12.31.2010 0

Boomer or Bust

  • On: 01/28/2011 09:17:55
  • In: Fiscal Responsibility
  • By Rick Manning

    The feel good State of the Union address with the good little boys and girls of the Congress sitting red, blue, red, blue was given a stark reality check by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) on January 26th which projected the budget deficit for this year at a staggering $1.5 trillion.

    To put this number into perspective, if Congress completely eliminated the entire Department of Labor, it would only result in a 1 percent reduction in the budget deficit.

    The CBO estimate makes the happy talk about spending more money on education, infrastructure and green technology development while punishing the bad oil companies not worth the paper it was written on, or the kilowatts it cost to disseminate it over the airwaves.

    The fact is that our nation faces an emergency unlike any since WWII. Our hegemony in the world is challenged daily by China, and the CBO just confirmed our worse fears: The nation is accelerating toward the cliff of financial insolvency. The only real hope is that the President and Congress will honestly work together to make the real and substantial cuts necessary to put us back on the path to solvency.

    However, the real challenge won’t be cuts to the discretionary budget, which makes up a relatively small amount of federal spending. We will know if the President and Congress are serious when they sit down and jointly agree to tackle entitlement cuts.
    Quite simply, failure to bring the costs of Medicare and Social Security under control is no longer an option if our nation is going to survive as an economic world power.

    And the only hope for meaningful change which guarantees America’s future solvency is if both political parties join together to make the painful cuts necessary throughout the entire budget, providing no room for the kind of attack ads guaranteed to sink any meaningful effort.

    For inspiration, we can look to our remaining World War II and Korean War generations, who understand what it means to have mutual sacrifice to ensure our nation’s survival.
    They lived through rationing of food, energy and virtually every item that was manufactured, so those resources could be used to provide our troops what they needed to beat totalitarianism around the world.

    However, baby boomers have never had to sacrifice for the good of the nation. The beneficiaries of the labor and sacrifice of our parents and grandparents, we are the comfortable one’s whose wealth has been built on a blizzard of debt with a bill we hoped to never have to pay.

    Now, the baby boomer generation has a choice: either to become the next “great generation” or the “last generation.”

    A “great generation” puts our nation before our personal comfort and needs, the “last generation” puts itself first.

    A “great generation” pulls the nation together by making sacrifices first so others will follow, the “last generation” demands that they be supported by our children and grandchildren, no matter the cost.

    A “great generation” leads, while the “last generation” demands more, and uses its voting clout to enslave its children to pay for it.

    The difference between a “great generation” and the “last one” is simply the courage and determination to do whatever is necessary to protect and rebuild America for our grandchildren and great grandchildren’s future.

    The Chinese and many in the world believe the days of America’s greatness are past us.
    They believe that we are too fat and happy to meet the challenges of the 21st Century.
    They believe that the world should be dominated by a nation that imprisons Nobel Prize winners, and enslaves its own people.

    Our leaders have a choice to make that will determine the course of freedom around the world.

    They can choose to play politics while our nation’s economic standing is decimated, or they can be bold and put the foundation in place for the 21st Century to be an American century that unleashes not only economic but also political freedom across the world.

    The pathway to fiscal solvency will not be easy, requiring baby boomers to, for the first time as a generation, put America ahead of our own interests and needs.

    The choice is stark, and if our leaders don’t lead, and the baby boomer generation doesn’t embrace the sacrifice necessary for our survival, future generations will be economically subservient to a Chinese master.

    I pray that our leaders come together and are given the courage to fight for America, and that every American decides that this great nation is worth our making the mutual sacrifice that our grandparents took for granted.

    Failure is not an option, as those of us in the baby boomer generation face a simple choice: do we want history to record us as the next “great generation” or as the “last generation”?

    Rick Manning is the Director of Communications for Americans for Limited Government.

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