Government vs. Business

By: June 10, 2011

I’m not an economist. But I did score well in 5th grade math, which is all that’s required to understand the horror show of our national debt situation.

On, a guy named Charles Hugh Smith performed a simple calculation that cuts through all the government and media spin, putting the last four years of Federal spending in chilling perspective. He found that despite borrowing $6.1 trillion (keep in mind that it took America two hundred years to accumulate our first trillion dollars of debt), the cumulative growth of our GDP is a paltry $700 billion. This means that for every $1 of growth, we have borrowed $8.70.

Imagine trying to run a business on those numbers. It would quickly collapse. And the same will eventually be true of the United States, if we don’t reverse course. Fast.

Yet, President Obama—our nation’s CEO—is seeking a $2.4 trillion increase to the debt ceiling. (We have already raised the debt ceiling 74 times since 1962, by the way.) He wants to borrow (and spend) more. And more. And more — despite the fact that all we have to show for our reckless borrowing are a gargantuan deficit and debt, high unemployment, and skyrocketing food and gas prices.

You will not find a better example of the fruits of Keynesian economics than this. It’s time we abandon the openly silly notion that we can spend our way to prosperity, that the United States of America is somehow immune to the basic laws of economics, and start slashing our budget as if we are a business.

I’d like to see an e-book from Voices of the Tea Party comparing how the Federal Government operates to how a successful business operates. The contrast will be staggering. No matter which way you slice the numbers, it paints a dismal picture of the federal government’s handling of the economy and would make a bulletproof case that it’s time to fire our CEO. 


Jon Wakefield is a leader of the Richmond, Virginia Tea Party.

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