U.S. Debt Dilemma - How Will It End?

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U.S. Debt Dilemma - How Will It End?

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Although economics in this complex world may seem very complicated and beyond the average citizen's ability to understand, the causes of the current financial problems faced by the United States are actually quite simple. In fact the same basic financial principles that apply in the lives of average citizens also apply to federal and state governments. In order to remain financially solvent, it is necessary to take in more money than is spent. As the catchy one-liner suggests, "Unless your income exceeds your outgo, your upkeep will be your downfall."

This fundamental economic principle is true for any and all institutions, large and small. Of course the federal government can get by longer than individuals by borrowing more money, printing more currency or issuing treasury bonds. But eventually the imbalance will take its toll.

Hard choices facing congress

The choices faced by Congress are limited and problematic. In order to pay its bills, the federal government needs congressional approval to increase the national debt limit. However, that is like blowing up a balloon that is already dangerously close to bursting.

The alternative would result in default—inability to pay some of its bills—that would lower the nation's credit rating. So the partisan battle rages over the debt limit increase and which benefits to cut, as well as whether or how much to increase taxes in order to move toward a balanced budget. The increased debt limit, while temporarily forestalling disaster, is only like putting a small bandage on a gaping wound.

Since elected officials are at the mercy of voters, their political survival depends on pleasing their constituents. So politicians typically dangle lofty promises of reduced taxes and increased benefits in their quest to win voter support during election campaigns. In simple terms that means reducing government income and increasing expenditures—the very opposite of what is needed to balance the budget and reduce the federal debt.

Human nature—the root of the problem

But raising taxes and cutting benefits collides head-on with the innate desire of citizens to get more and give less. Some may voice support for the concept of balancing the budget and reducing the federal debt, but only so long as the cuts are made in budget areas that don't affect their lifestyle.

I have never forgotten a folksy nugget of truth that I learned from a college economics professor many years ago: "God helps those who help themselves, so take plenty." The simple play on words lends a touch of humor to an otherwise serious and sobering reality that forms the basis of most of mankind's problems—what might be simply expressed as "the way of get" that characterizes human nature.

So the actions that President Obama and Congress have decided on are at best stop-gap measures, and the nation's economic woes will continue so long as human nature remains unabated.

God's plan for economic success and prosperity

Thankfully, God has a plan for international economic recovery that is outlined in the pages of your Bible. The gospel of the Kingdom of God speaks of the return of Jesus Christ as King of Kings and Lord of Lords to usher in 1,000 years of peace and prosperity. That plan includes a provision to change human nature from the way of get to the way of giving and sharing.

More information available to you

To learn more about that plan and what it can mean for you, be sure to request or download our free booklet, The Gospel of the Kingdom. I also encourage you to register now for our free Kingdom of God Bible Seminar on this vital topic, coming soon to a city near you.

We also offer practical information and help for your personal finances at no cost in our booklet, Managing Your Finances.