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Earlier last week, news broke of the President’s deal with Democrats in order to tie appropriations for victims of Hurricane Harvey to the congressional debt ceiling, which conservatives have traditionally used as a tool to attempt to lower federal spending. . While the move received praise from liberals, the consensus feeling among most conservatives is a sense of betrayal.
Introduced in 2011, the debt limit was created to leverage then President Obama into adopting a spending policy of fiscal restraint. The result was a system insuring that the House would only increase the statutory debt ceiling if it was accompanied by equal spending cuts, effectively ensuring that the government must stay within the budget deficit allowed. While this still produced national debt, it was a deterrent to excessive spending before being raised by congressional democrats and President Trump. Now that democrats have voted to raise the ceiling, the fiscally conservative leverage is gone, and has been replaced by a precedent for the government to continue spending even more of the money it does not have.
While there are key differences between an individual lender and the Federal Government, the principle in borrowing remains the same: as a borrower you seek low interest rates and borrowing limits as high as possible, and as a lender you seek safe investments from borrowers who will likely pay back the principal sum with interest. The problem arises when the government serves as both the lender and the borrower, as the net result is an increase to the national deficit.
Although debt is a negative quality for the fiscally conservative, the increasing national debt is even more problematic when you factor in the failed attempts to audit the federal reserve, meaning that it is highly likely that if the United States were to ever default on its debt, our entire currency system could face unprecedented inflation, or collapse.
Spending yourself or your family into debt is a bad idea on even a small basic micro economic level. The fact that the government is willing to deficit spend on a large scale is not only irresponsible, but entirely unsustainable. Our country needs to be more fiscally conservative and lower the debt ceiling, while working towards fundamental changes to the federal budget.
The last time the national budget was balanced was almost 20 years ago. While aid has begun to reach victims of Hurricane Harvey, we cannot allow congress to reserve the right for future deficit spending on behalf of the American People. It is time to call on congress to work towards a balanced budget, and step one means that it must lower the debt ceiling back to its previous level before this week- and then some.