Realizing how fragile our country has become
To the editor:
July 4th brings out the best in American patriots. But as I reflected on how marvelous our country is, it also reminded me of how fragile we have become.
While watching the evening news a few nights ago, I said to my wife Beverly, “I like that guy but I don’t trust him.” I was referring to a politician being interviewed on live TV. My wife responded, “How can you like him if you don’t trust him?”
Good question and it needs an answer. Unfortunately, in a Republic such as ours, the vast majority of politicians prioritize getting re-elected. And, to get elected they often feel compelled to say what the people want to hear.
For example, one of our most frightening problems today is our staggering debt. $28.5 trillion and growing at about $4 billion per day. Yet they, the vast majority of politicians, claim a desire to get the budget under control. But, after being confronted about our debt, they do nothing and say less! $28.5 trillion. Can you believe that?
My state, Ohio, has a balanced budget requirement. As do over 20 other states. But not the United States of America — the federal government. Why? We, in Ohio, also have term limits. But not the Congress of the USA. Why?
When our representatives take their constituents for granted, as many do thanks to gerrymandering, why would they wish to take on a huge problem such as our federal government’s dependence on borrowing? It’s certainly not a popular problem. It’s more insidious, like inflation. We don’t throw a lobster into a cold pot of water and then turn the heat up. If we do, the lobster gets used to it and you know what eventually happens to the lobster. That’s inflation and the federal debt. We, the public, have sort of gotten used to it.
Taking on our country’s financial situation is not popular. That’s why I say, “I like that guy but don’t trust him.” Maybe, just maybe, when our borrowing starts to affect us with a lower standard of living, or worse, when we find a politician that I can honestly say, “I like that guy and, yes, I do trust him.” — wouldn’t that be nice? Perhaps a miracle will occur too, but don’t hold your breath.”
RONALD J. PRICE,