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The Debt Ceiling...The Scary Truth?

For the past few weeks Congress has been very publicly going back and forth with President Barack Obama regarding the debt ceiling. I decided it’s time for us to explore this issue a little further. First, according to CNN Money, “it’s a cap set by Congress on the amount of debt the federal government can legally borrow. The cap applies to debt owed to the public (i.e., anyone who buys U.S. bonds) plus debt owed to federal government trust funds such as those for Social Security and Medicare.

From the way Congress is carrying on, quite naturally I became alarmed that President Obama must be proposing some monstrosity, the likes of which had never been seen in the history of organized government. Well fasten your seat belts because you are not going to believe what I learned.

Further exploration of the CNN Money article showed that “since March 1962, the debt ceiling has been raised 74 times, according to the Congressional Research Service. Ten of those times have occurred since 2001″. Alright, so the President is not proposing some unheard of horror that will lead the United States down a destructive path from which there is no return. History has proved that


Well maybe, I thought, trying to give Congress the benefit of the doubt, they are fighting raising the debt ceiling so vigorously because it’s a vice used by Democrats in some shady way. Then, lo and behold, my research turned up an article by Mark Knoller on stating that President George W. Bush Jr. raised the debt ceiling at least 7 (yes seven) times without nearly as much rebellious and negative hoopla from congress. According to “Where is The Outrage“, President Bust accomplished raising the debt ceiling numerous times “with plenty of help from the four Republicans currently holding Congressional leadership positions: Speaker John Boehner, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, and Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl.” Wow, things are getting interesting here.

So let’s use a process of elimination to see what can have congress so up in arms. President Obama is not the first (nor probably the last) President to bring before Congress the prospect of raising the debt ceiling. President Obama is not using some sort of democratic sleight of hand to put one over on the country as raising the debt ceiling has been much used by Republican administrations to offer hope of economic relief. Well then what could it possibly be that is making President Obama such a target for Republican Congressmen/women? Well, let’s see. What is the only thing that makes President Obama unique from any other President that has served as the leader of the United States of America? I can only think of one thing, and I pray it isn’t so.

The last straw was when I received a text (from my CNN news alerts) saying that it is possible that if the debt ceiling isn’t raised, there may be a delay in the checks scheduled to go out at the beginning of August 2011. Included in these checks might be social security checks, checks for retired veterans, and disability checks. Hold up, wait a minute. It’s one thing if the two parties of Congress want to play these wild west, my gun’s bigger than yours games on their own dime. But when they would dare endanger the welfare of the very citizens they are elected to represent in order to prove a point, it’s a sad state of affairs in the annals of American History. Again I ask, why now, why this President? Hmmm….again, I pray it isn’t so.

Whatever your views, please contact your representative in Congress and remind them that they are elected by the people and are supposed to be for the people.

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