When I began this weblog in May of 2006, my intent was to focus on the fact that America’s leadership has betrayed its duty to our Founders and its allegiance to our people. In the nearly two years that AADB has been in existence, that betrayal has ramped up dramatically, to the point at which its connotations are nothing short of deadly to the sovereignty of our republic and the safety of our people.
Nearly all of our ‘leadership’ in all three branches of government, on the federal level, consists of men and women who bear little or no allegiance to our Constitution or the men who sacrificed so dearly to ensure us a sovereign republic, individual freedom, and limited government.
In Congress, I suspect that far more than ninety percent of those ‘leaders’ seated in the house and senate can anymore be accurately described as ‘public servants’. The large majority of our ‘leadership’ is nothing more than a well-heeled group of self-serving, agenda-driven elitists, convinced that they know better than we do how we should live, and that government should have the power to dictate those parameters.
In the White House, the vision of a united North America, and the needs and desires of the business class, dramatically outweigh this administration’s perceived duty to the average American citizen.
Our courts are filled with activist, left-wing agenda-driven societal architects, whose familiarity with, and reverence for, their Constitutional powers is minimal, at best.
God bless the James Inhofes, Antonin Scalias, Clarence Thomases, and the other perhaps dozen or so federal legislators and judges who still hold fast to their Constitutional callings. They are an honorable, but dying, breed. And I wish them well in what will prove to be their futile battle to reclaim America from the scoundrels.
Over the past five decades, the leftists among us have led us down a path that they insisted on painting in garden-like hues, but the ominous black destination that lies at the end of that path is becoming increasingly clear to right-thinking Americans.
The majority of Americans, when asked what they believe to be the most pressing issue facing America this election year, invariably respond ‘the economy’. And yet I sincerely believe those same Americans have absolutely no idea what kind of condition the American economy is in. The average American, simply put, defines the economy in terms of the cost of a loaf of bread, or whether or not he has a job.
Yet the American economy is a many-tentacled organism, whose health is directly tied to the sovereignty and security of our republic. And the American economy is in shambles.
The reason for the economy’s ill health is that the American ‘leadership’ of the past fifty years (the Reagan years excluded) has thrown fiscal responsibility out the window, and has used economic power to buy votes, and to surreptitiously and premeditatedly destroy every foundation upon which this republic began.
Ayn Rand was uncannily prescient in her description of this sickening evolution:
The goal of the 'liberals' as it emerges from the record of the past decades was to smuggle this country into welfare statism by means of single, concrete, specific measures, enlarging the power of the government a step at a time, never permitting these steps to be summed up into principles, never permitting their direction to be identified or the basic issue to be named. Thus, statism was to come, not by vote or by violence, but by slow rot -- by a long process of evasion and epistemological corruption, leading to a fait accompli.
That fait accompli is close to being accomplished, but at what price?
Below is a transcript of an interview with David Walker, Comptroller of the United States. Mr. Walker is not an elected government official. He is, put simply, America’s chief financial accountability officer.
America’s Comptroller is head of the Government Accountability Office, and, as such, his duty (according the the GAO’ mission statement) is to help improve the performance and assure the accountability of the federal government for the benefit of the American people. Over the years, GAO has earned a reputation for professional, objective, fact-based, and nonpartisan reviews of government issues and operations.
Yet Mr. Walker is aghast at what our government is doing to our economy, our security, and our children’s inheritance – and no one in Washington is listening to him.
Why? Because no one in Washington anymore considers himself accountable to anyone (least of all the American people), or anything … except the realization of an elitist agenda.
I urge you to read his words. They are candid, and not motivated by political concerns. They simply scratch the surface of the ocean of fiscal, moral and political corruption in Washington. The tentacles from the governmental irresponsibility he describes reach into every aspect of American life – the most frightening of which will be our deteriorating ability to continue to exist as a free and sovereign republic.
When the stock market plunges like it did this week, everyone pays attention.
But short-term losses aren’t that important to the man you are about to meet. David Walker thinks the biggest economic peril facing the nation is being ignored, and for the past year he’s been traveling the country, like an Old Testament prophet, urging people to wake up before its too late.
Who is David Walker, and why should we care? He’s the nation’s top accountant – the Comptroller General of the United States. He’s totaled up the government’s income, liabilities and future obligations, and concluded that our current standard of living is unsustainable, unless some drastic action is taken.
And he’s not alone. It’s been called ‘the dirty little secret everyone in Washington knows’ -- a set of financial truths so inconvenient that most elected officials don’t even want to talk about them.
Which is exactly why David Walker does.
I will argue that the most serious threat to the United States is not someone hiding in a cave in Afghanistan or Pakistan, but our own fiscal irresponsibility.
As Comptroller General of the United States, he runs the Government Accountability Office, The GAO, which audits the government’s books and serves as the investigative arm of the U.S. Congress.
I’m gonna show you some numbers. They’re all big and they’re all bad.
So bad that Walker has given up on elected officials, and taken his message directly to taxpayers and opinion-makers, hoping to shape the debate in the next presidential election.
We’ve been to thirteen cities outside of Washington. The American people are absolutely starved for two things: the truth … and leadership.
He calls it ‘The Fiscal Wake-Up Tour’ and he is telling civic groups, university forums, and newspaper editorial boards that the U.S. has spent, promised and borrowed itself into such a deep hole that it will be unable to climb out if it doesn’t act now.
As Walker sees it, the survival of the Republic is at stake.
What’s going on right now is that we’re spending more money than we make, charging it to a credit card, and expecting our grandchildren to pay for it. And that’s absolutely outrageous …
We’ve gone from surpluses to huge deficits, and our long-range situation is much worse.
The fact is that we don’t face an immediate crisis, and so people say ‘What’s the problem?’ The problem is that we suffer from a fiscal cancer. It is growing within us. And if we do not treat it, it could have catastrophic consequences for our country.
The cancer, Walker says, are massive entitlement programs we can no longer afford, exacerbated by a demographic ‘glitch’ that began more than sixty years ago – a dramatic spike in the fertility rate called the ‘baby boom’.
Beginning next year, and for twenty years thereafter, seventy-eight million Americans will become pensioners, and medical dependents, of the U.S. taxpayer.
The first baby boomer will become sixty-two, and be eligible for early retirement or Social Security, January 1, 2008. They’ll be eligible for Medicare just three years later. And when those boomers start retiring en masse, that will be a tsunami of spending that could swamp our ship of state, if we don’t get serious.
To illustrate that fact, Walker uses a PowerPoint presentation to show what would happen in thirty years if the U.S. maintains its current course, and fulfills all the promises politicians have made to the public on things like Social Security and Medicare.
By 2040, if nothing changes, the federal government is going to be able to do nothing more than pay interest on the mounting debt, and some entitlement benefits. It won’t have money left for anything else: national defense, homeland security, education … you name it.
Walker says you could eliminate all waste and fraud, and the entire Pentagon budget, and those long-range financial projections will barely change.
What’s shaping up is an actuarial nightmare.
[Not having enough wage earners to pay Social Security benefits] is part of the problem. But the real problem is healthcare costs. Our healthcare problem is much more significant than Social Security. The Medicare problem is five times greater than the Social Security problem.
But instead of dealing with the problem, the president and the congress made things much worse just three years ago when they expanded the Medicare program to include prescription drug coverage.
The Prescription Drug Bill was probably the most fiscally irresponsible piece of legislation since the 1960s. We’ve promised way more than we can afford to do: eight trillion dollars added to what was already a fifteen to twenty trillion dollar underfunding.
We’re not being realistic. We can’t afford to keep the promises we’ve already made, much less to be piling on top of them.
With one stroke of the pen, Walker says the federal government increased existing Medicare obligations by nearly forty percent over the next seventy-five years.
We’d have to have eight trillion dollars now, invested at treasury rates, to deliver on that promise. And we have zip.
Walker says we have promised almost unlimited healthcare to senior citizens who never see the bills, and the government is already borrowing money to pay them.
The system is unsustainable. It’s the number one fiscal challenge for the federal government. It’s the number of fiscal challenge for state governments. And it’s the number one competitive challenge for American business. We’re going to have to dramatically, and fundamentally, reform our healthcare system, in installments, over the next twenty years.
If we don’t, it could bankrupt America.
You’re probably expecting to hear from someone who disagrees with the Comptroller’s numbers, projections, and analyses. But hardly anyone does.
He is accompanied on the ‘Wake up Tour’ by representatives from the conservative Heritage Foundation, left-leaning Brookings Institution, and the nonpartisan Concord Coalition.
The only dissenters seem to be a small minority of economists who believe either that the U.S. can grow its way out of the problem, or that Walker is over-stating it.
Unfortunately, they don’t get it. I don’t know anybody who has done their homework, has researched history, and who’s good at math, who would tell you that we can grow our way out of this problem.
Federal Reserve Chairman, Ben Bernanke, validated much of Walker’s take on the situation at congressional hearings this year (’Economic growth alone is unlikely to solve this nation’s fiscal problems’) -- and so did ranking republicans and democrats on the senate Budget Committee.
This is not just about numbers. We are mortgaging the future of our children and grandchildren at record rates. And that is not only an issue of fiscal irresponsibility. It’s an issue of immorality.
As comprehensive as this interview is, Mr. Walker did not even touch on the issue of America's mirage-based monetary policy (fodder for another essay, at another time).
Below are just four, of countless, telling charts that exhibit small snapshots of the true nature of America's economy, without spin or fudge factor. I hope to elaborate on these and other economic indicators in future essays, and hope that some of you will contribute your knowledge as well. Thanks for the steer to the charts, First_Salute.
The American people have always been, and still are, a good and decent people. But our leaders are dishonest, immoral and self-serving. The honest and decent among us had better soon awaken from our apathetic stupor or the seeds that our criminal leaders have sown will grow into choking weeds more powerful and ugly than we can imagine ... and they will have stripped from us the power to cut them down.