Debt Ceiling Cliffnotes

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If you’re confused about all of the talk in the news about debt ceilings, taxes, government shutdowns, and what not, no need to worry about what it all means.  Here at The Cool Table, we’ll explain it simple and plain:

1) In 2001 we decided to cut taxes on the wealthiest Americans.

2) September 11 happened.  Then we decided to go to war.  Wars costs lots of money.

3) Two wars and a financial bailout later, it’s time to pay the piper.  The thing is, we’ve reached the limit on what we can borrow.  No more can be borrowed unless we raise the “debt ceiling,” or limit on what we can borrow.  It’s similar to you calling your credit card company and asking them to raise the limit on your Visa card.

4) Our government runs on a budget.  In order to pay for things, we need money.  If the “credit limit” isn’t increased, then we can’t pay for things, much less make payments on what we already owe.  So we have to borrow more money, bring more money in, and stop spending on certain things.

5) Traditionally, Democrats believe in using revenue from taxes to pay for things.  Traditionally, Republicans believe in lower taxes, in hopes that those who hold most of the wealth will use the tax savings to do things like create jobs, invest, etc.  With more jobs, then you have more people paying taxes.  With more investing, you can tax money made from investments rather than incomes.  Hopefully, that would offset money not coming in from income taxes.

6) We can’t really agree on which approach is best, so we argue, give long speeches, debate, and accuse each other on TV.  Oh, and some of the people in charge who hold elected positions are afraid of not being re-elected.  Therefore, they hold on to traditional beliefs regardless of how it will affect the country.

There you have it!  Now that you know, what do you think the best approach is?