My Take on “Is Fiscal Responsibility Gone Forever?”
Is fiscal responsibility gone forever? It depends on who you ask. I think it is. Formerly, we could count on Republicans to introduce at least some measure of fiscal responsibility and spending control. Now, however, that’s gone. Trump has spent prodigious sums, as did Obama, as did Bush the younger.
That should be concerning to more people. Despite the skyrocketing national debt, almost no one seems concerned. Sure, there are a few people like me who continually write online about government deficits and why the national debt is still a problem.
Unfortunately, few politicians seem to take the problem seriously. Nor do many of their constituents take it seriously. Instead, everyone just clamors for more government money. They’re full of lies about socialism and government spending that come from everyone from teachers lying about Robin Hood to socialist economists making up values of Keynesian economics and modern monetary theory, so no one takes the “is fiscal responsibility gone forever?” question seriously enough.
That refusal to acknowledge the government’s spending problem is perplexing. It’s quite obvious to most people that the government spends far too much money on public projects that fail to measure up to their private competitors. Constantly, journalists on the right and left show how everything the government touches is plagued with cost overruns, delays, and randomly changing specifications.
Just look at the F-35 fighter, for example. It’s a wonderful fighting machine, but also highly expensive, as are the rest of the technologically advanced weapons described in Army of None. Why has the cost not fallen as technology has advanced? Because the government is involved and it doesn’t take the “is fiscal responsibility gone forever?” question seriously, so it just keeps on spending more and more. Weapons of war are necessary, yes, but so is fiscal responsibility.
The big problem is that high taxes and high government spending are problematic for the economy. They suck up money that could be invested much, much more profitably by the private sector and lead to a decay of society as more citizens accept the welfare benefits or government contracts provided by tax dollars rather than take a leap and try to make their fortune in the free market, as all other previous generations of Americans did.
That fact is shown well by the horrific aftermath of Lyndon Johnson’s failed War on Poverty. Those are societal ills that young conservatives need to recognize and start trying to fix. The first step to fix them is to honestly and openly answer the “is fiscal responsibility gone forever?” question.
But, no one makes the connection that fiscal responsibility is the cure to those ills. Instead, they just call for “better oversight” and keep supporting their pet projects. Conservatives support ever-increasing military spending and liberals support skyrocketing welfare and unsustainably high Social Security spending.
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Better oversight won’t solve anything. We need a cultural shift back to the values of the Founding Fathers. The values behind the American creed. Perhaps, having politicians read an expense management book such as Rich Habits would be useful. Likely, they’d just disregard the lessons in it about not spending money you don’t have.
Oversight just means that one government bureaucrat that is paid to much will bicker with another government bureaucrat that is paid too much about how much a program costs. Neither cares about the answer to “is fiscal responsibility gone forever?” They just want to look busy and keep their cushy government jobs and suck up tax dollars.
In reality, I think the only solution is for citizen outcry about government spending to reach Washington. Read Righteous Indignation and learn how to grab the attention of the elites. Use that attention to demand spending cuts or at the very least no new entitlements. Spending needs to be cut somehow and I think that’s the only way. The politicians don’t really care what we say as long as we’re not an immediate threat to their reelection chances. I interned in a Senate office and that was painfully obvious.
But, if a huge group rises up to push for a specific policy change and remains dedicated to affecting that policy change, then government officials and our representatives feel much more pressure to act. That’s an idea that’s been recognized since the discussion of interest groups in The Federalist Papers. I think we should start doing that and force an answer to the “is fiscal responsibility gone forever?” question that is now one of, if not the, defining questions of modern American politics.
So, is fiscal responsibility gone forever? Comment below if you agree or disagree with my argument. I think it is as long as citizens stand on the sidelines. But, if we step up and demand they reign in the country’s finances, then perhaps fiscal responsibility will make a comeback.
That comeback would be transformative. The already booming Trump economy would be kicked into high-gear as dollars that would have been sucked up and shredded by a bloated government would instead be invested in productive enterprises. Americans would go back to work rather than relying on the welfare net that costs us so much money. All of that would make America economically booming again, which is just what Trump promised to do.
Unfortunately, Trump is no longer in office. Biden (and Kamala) is occupying 1600 Penn and, as a result, we’re likely to see even more fiscal irresponsibility. Biden’s going to kick massively irresponsible spending into high gear.
By: Gen Z Conservative