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Longboat Key Thursday, Oct. 27, 2016 4 years ago

What’s the best path?

Put aside the candidates’ sins and flaws. Think instead about the best path forward to lighten the next generations’ debt burden and improve their standard of living.
by: Matt Walsh Editor & CEO

The comments are universal: Everyone is exhausted, exasperated, sick … sick of the depths this election cycle has fallen.

Neither major political party’s presidential candidate has the character nor the temperament that Americans want in the Oval Office. George Washington must be weeping in his grave.

So try putting the leading candidates’ character traits and past sins aside. Put a hood over their heads, or one over your own head and think of that vote atop your ballot as a vote for the future direction of the United States of America.

Forget the personalities. Think about what you want for your children. For your grandchildren. Your great-grandchildren.

That is the decision to be made. Who — not just in the presidential race, but among all of the candidates — will best represent, promote and defend the best path for our nation and future generations?

If you haven’t voted yet, set aside your emotions, and start your analysis pragmatically. Put your emphasis on economics, on our nation’s financial well-being.

To be sure, all of us know about money. And all of us know about debt. And we know that when the interest on our debts — credit cards, auto loans, home loans — consumes larger and larger shares of our income, we know we are poorer, weaker and less secure. Less secure to be able to handle that unexpected health crisis. Less secure for the flood. Less secure when the economy collapses and we have no job. Less secure for retirement.

This is the path we are on in the United States — $20 trillion in debt, $76 trillion if you include all of Medicare and Social Security’s unfunded liabilities. And it’s growing. Our nation is growing weaker and less secure by the minute. And we are passing this burden on to the next generations, sentencing them to lower standards of living. Admit it: You know this in your heart.

What’s more, here is one of the ugliest, most destructive parts of traveling this path: Few Americans realize that this debt is a pernicious daily tax, a spreading cancer that is destroying their standard of living even today. Every day, the federal government prints more money to fund the federal government’s spending, that additional money supply devalues every dollar in your and your children’s pockets. It makes all of us poorer than we realize. It also makes us less free. When you owe, you are in bondage.

Is that the path you want for your grandchildren, to leave for your heirs?

When the Founding Fathers signed the Declaration of Independence, they established what they believed, with all their hearts, with their blood, to be the moral foundation for a free society. Thomas Jefferson expressed it in those words that Americans still value and defend with their lives today: “that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness …” 

Leave us alone, they said; tyranny from a ruling power will never be tolerated. The passion for liberty was so great in parts of the country after the American Revolution that many wanted no government at all.

Fifteen years later, the Founders followed the Declaration of Independence from British tyranny with the Constitution — enumerating limited powers of a new federal government.

Today, few of us — liberal or conservative — could argue that over the past 240 years, our representatives in Washington, unfortunately too often with voters’ consent, have emasculated and strayed from the limits the Founders placed on the federal government in the original Constitution. 

Just look at the size and extent of that government — more than 5 million employees, $3.8 trillion in annual spending (20% of the entire U.S. economy) and $76 trillion in debt. Or look at the vicious and spreading assaults on the First and Second Amendments — codified among our unalienable rights. 

If you believe in the Declaration of Independence and what the Founders succinctly spelled out in Amendment X in the Constitution — e.g. “The powers not delegated to the United States … are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people” — then examine closely the paths that the two presidential candidates have laid out for our future.

Which one prescribes a fiscal path that will lighten the destructive  burden on future generations? Which one prescribes a path that will give the next generations greater freedom to pursue happiness? Which one prescribes a path that more closely aligns with the Founders’ visions of a free society in the Declaration of Independence and a restrained, limited government in the Constitution?

Go to the websites of the presidential candidates. Read their plans. Put your emotions aside. Keep the bags over the candidates’ heads and character flaws. Conduct your own dispassionate litmus tests for whose policies will lead to more freedom or more serfdom. Draw your own conclusions.

House Speaker Paul Ryan is right about this: There is “A Better Way.” 

Think of what we’re leaving the next generations.


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