What does the future hold for the next generation of Americans?
Economic stagnation? Unemployment? Higher taxes? Yes, yes, and yes, unless serious action is taken soon.
On our current path, the economic future of the United States is darker, less prosperous, and less secure. Why? For decades, Washington has been on a spending spree fueled by reckless levels of debt and trillions in deficits. This problem has only been exacerbated during the first 19 months of the Obama administration. Federal debt, held by the public, has increased by more than $2.5 trillion. This vast increase is greater than the cumulative total of national debt that was amassed from George Washington through Ronald Reagan.
In a recent report the International Monetary Fund predicted U.S. national debt would soon equal 100 percent of GDP — a number far beyond the 80 percent threshold that many economists warn against surpassing.
Very simply, America’s credit cards are maxed out. Standard and Poor’s — one of the agencies which rate the ability of a sovereign nation to repay its debts — has already lowered its outlook for America’s long-term credit rating from “stable” to “negative,” increasing the chances that the U.S. could lose its AAA bond rating in the next two years if actions aren’t taken to lower the deficit.
Now, with further economic stagnation and gloom staring President Obama in the eye, he and his allies in Congress want to raise the debt ceiling by trillions more. Rather than cut the reckless overspending of his administration, President Obama has chosen to spend us further into debt and kick the can down the road by taking another job-killing line of credit.
While the president is asking for a higher debt ceiling, he has not yet released a definitive budget that would serve as a spending framework and a blueprint to reduce the deficit. In fact, during a June 23 congressional hearing, CBO Director Douglas Elmendorf explained the president’s latest budget framework is too vague to be scored, saying “We don’t estimate speeches. We need much more specificity than was provided in [President Obama’s April 13] speech for us to do our analysis.”
The Washington Post, of all places, put it plainly: “Obama has no plan to balance the budget. Ever.”
With more Americans now unemployed for more than six months than during the Great Depression, the time for the dithering and delaying in Washington must come to an end.