The U.S. Economy is in the crapper, and their credit rating has been downgraded, in part, as a result of the inability of the Democrats and the Republicans to act in a responsible manner to address their debt woes.
And still, partisan pundits try to desperately lock on to any snippet of S&P's commentary that will suggest that it was MOSTLY the other guy's fault.
But the bottom line, the simple answer, is "too much debt".
Now - you can debate why that debt is there, whether it's entitlement spending, military efforts abroad, an insufficiently punitive tax regime for the wealthy - but you can't deny the problem is too much debt.
And, there but for the grace of God go us Canadians. Our debt picture is amongst the healthiest in the world, but we are continuing to run an unbalanced deficit budget and are projected to run that deficit budget until 2014. And this is under a "conservative" government.
Yet notwithstanding watching the harsh cuts being advanced in Greece, and the nightmare of a failing U.S. economy - in Canada, we still don't get it. We pretend that there are groves of money trees in Ottawa. We pretend that when it comes to, well, whatever we "need" (that is "want") money is no object.
But the problem, obviously, it is.
Perhaps it's time to dial down the rhetoric, and to start addressing our problems in a non-partisan, pragmatic fashion.
We need to balance our budget. Let's not equivocate about that - running up debt is a recipe for major problems in a world where the G6 is now the G20 and will, sooner than later be the G100 and more.
There are countries out there who don't yet have our taste for what we are "entitled" to from government and from our employers. Countries that don't have bloated pension obligations, where annual trips to Cancun aren't seen as a "necessity", where having a dirt floor and outdoor plumbing is common - and eventually, those developing economies will be seen as very attractive to corporations seeking lower costs both for land and labor.
My two cents? It's not going to happen in our current political climate - and we're miles ahead of our southern neighbors.
And yet, even hear, noise.
There's too much noise. Too many special interests screaming for their "piece of the pie". I sat down at a meeting a couple years ago with a local group asked to meet and talk to the Premier.
And I was disgusted. To a person, what they used their two or three minutes of face time for was to ask for money. Not to ask "what they can do for their country", not to suggest changes in government for the public benefit, but to ask for more money.
We have become a nation of panhandlers.
And it's pathetic.
From women's rights to the Fraser Institute, one way or the other, ever one wants either MORE money from government, or to pay LESS taxes - both just opposite sides of the same loonie.
How about we don't ask for "more for me" for a change?
How about we stop being a nation of panhandlers.
Posted by wage