You Break It, You Buy It
How about the mortgage crisis? It is not our responsibility to repay your upside-down home loan. If you can’t afford the debt or the possibility of a (severe) market downturn, don’t buy a house, and for God’s sake don’t take out the equity as a line of credit. Take responsibility and make good on your obligations. Now some may subvert this by suggesting the government or the banking system did the breaking and should do the buying -- in most cases that is just an attempt to place blame. While there is plenty of evidence that government policy encourages irresponsible behavior with regard to home buying (with debt), encouragement is far from a mandate.
Of course, this is all linked to freedom, especially as the knee-jerk reaction of the nanny state is to regulate and legislate away liberty to protect us from ourselves -- a ridiculous notion in a free country. Society must demand individuals own up to their own mistakes, and stop allowing the government to come beyond like some giant pooper scooper and let people carry on without any accountability.
So when you are out shopping and you say or hear “you break it you buy it,” take a second and think about it -- if you walk it like you talk it, maybe your kids will believe you.