A Scary Spectacle

On this Halloween weekend, when Americans enjoy a little scary fun, I thought it would be fitting for us to take a look at some truly frightening realities of the behemoth that our federal government has now become. 

Consider the following:

  • At the time of our nation’s founding, the govt.

    cost each person $20 in today’s dollars. (1)

  • For nearly 150 years, our elected leaders did a pretty good job of keeping our government in line with the enumerated powers of Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution. And as a result, we stayed pretty level in our spending all the way through the 1930s, with government never costing more than a few hundred dollars per person.(1)
  • That all changed in the 1930’s with FDR’s Raw, Ahem…I mean, New Deal. He socialized (gave the govt. control of) a large portion of our society – and here’s the key – EVERY administration since has added programs and grown government.
  • As a result, government now costs each citizen an average of $10,000 a year.

So, why is this so frightening? 
(How about 1.42 trillion reasons?)

  • $1,420,000,000,000 OR one trillion, four hundred twenty billion dollars. This is a gigantic number and it happens to be our country’s federal budget deficit for 2009. So from Oct. 1, 2008 through Sept. 30, 2009 the federal govt. spent $1.42

    trillion more than it took in. (2)

Let’s try to add some context and perspective so we can get our minds around this number:

  • Last year’s deficit was $459 billion – still a colossal number, but less than half the deficit for 2009. (2)
  • 1.42 trillion is more than the entire economy of India and enough to give every living person in the United States $4,700. (2)
  • A trillion = a million million,

    or a thousand billion.

  • A trillion dollar bills laid end to end would reach the sun (4)
  • With a trillion dollars you could spend a dollar per second for 32,000 years (4)
  • For an excellent visual of what a trillion dollars looks like, watch this: Trillion.

And yet, what might be the most frightening of these actualizations is this one:

  • A trillion dollars is enough to run the U.S. federal government for 103 days.

SAY WHAT? How could this be?

Just as frightening are these two mind numbing facts:

  • Our current national debt total is $9.1 trillion, and climbing every day.
  • The Congressional Budget Office has projected that, under President Obama’s spending plans, our national debt will rise to $17.1 trillion by the year 2019.

WHAT? Have we lost our collective minds? Think about these numbers for a moment. Do you think enough Americans realize just how frighteningly ginormous and out of control our federal government has become? Do any of us truly comprehend the sheer monstFRANKENSTEINrosity and complexity of the bureaucracy now before us?

 Most importantly, I wonder if we realize how grotesque and disfigured the current state of our government is compared to the original constitutional republic of delimited powers  that was established under God. And how easily we forget that it was the states who created the federal govt., not the other way around.

To me, this is the most frightening aspect of this analysis: the distance traveled – in a little more than 200 years – from the original system so painstakingly created for us by our founders. It is hardly recognizable, in fact, and has truly become our own Frankenstein monster!

Arrgghhhh!!!! I’m from the government and I’m here to help…(RUN, RUN, RUN for your life!!!)

(1) John Stossel, Give Me a Break
(2) Congressman Frank Lucas
(3) Jeff Walker, editorial columnist
(4) Mint.com

Published in: Weekly posts | on October 29th, 2009 | No Comments »

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