Kingman Letter: Debt limit debate sign of failed leadership

The fact that we are here today to debate raising America's debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can't pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our government's reckless fiscal policies. Increasing America's debt weakens us domestically and internationally. Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better.

Those are not my words. They are the words of Senator Barack Obama on the Senate floor on March 20, 2006.

In the first two years of the Obama administration has increased the debt $3.6 trillion, three times the rate of the previous administration. I would argue this is reckless fiscal policy. Putting this debt on the backs of our children and grandchildren is reprehensible. Obama is the epitome of hypocrisy.

Obama wields the sword of class envy. He wants to blame the rich for not paying enough taxes. Yet the top 10 percent of wage earners pay 70 percent of income taxes, the bottom 50 percent of wage earners pay 3 percent of income taxes, and 49 percent of households pay no income tax.

It is the rich that provide jobs and have to compete in a global economy. When their burdens increase, in order to compete, they have to raise prices, or cut jobs, or some of both. Professional politicians and bureaucrats don't have a clue about running a business. Their primary concern is keeping their jobs by growing government at the expense of the private sector.

The private sector is stagnant because of uncertainty and the threat of increased burdens. All that is needed is real incentive to expand. The Obama administration does the opposite. The United States has one of the highest corporate tax rates in the world at 35 percent. This rate is nearly double the average international rate.

History has confirmed what promotes growth - lower taxes. It worked for Kennedy, Reagan and Bush II. Lower taxes brought more businesses, more jobs, increased production along with increased sales and actually increased government revenue. And, what has Congress done with the increased revenue? Instead of returning it to the private sector to generate more growth they increase government waste.

It is time to turn this Titanic-like ship around and return government spending to the 2006 level as a first step back to prosperity. It is time to throw Obama's hypocrisy back at him. One in four households have been hit with unemployment and have had to take much larger proportions of their budget than 2006 spending levels would impose on federal spending.

Realistically, you don't raise the debt limit of anyone in financial trouble. You cut off their credit and force them to prioritize their expenditures. It is insane to allow them to add to their debt. The federal government should be no different. It is time the politicians and bureaucrats practice the same standards as a responsible household. We live within our means and prioritize our spending according to our needs, not wants. The stimulus spending was a ruse and so is raising the debt ceiling.

Joan Monteith