Follow Mike Lee’s example: Walk away from debt

Mike Lee has shown us the light.

For years now, Sen. Lee and his fellow Republicans, and not just those who prefer tea, have been arguing that the United States needs to act like an American family — allegedly balancing its budget each year by ensuring that revenue equals or exceeds expenses.

These folks even go so far as to promote passage of a Balanced Budget Amendment, which, for a nation, is unsound economic policy.

The argument sounds great, but, of course, fails any intellectual examination, as most U.S. households use credit card debt, mortgage debt and other debt (including horrific payday lending) to bridge their cash flow week-to-week, month-to-month and year-to-year.

While everyone can perhaps agree that the national debt is too high, or at least higher than desirable, we need to be honest about how it got there: tax cuts accompanied by two unfunded wars, and the ensuing deepest recession since the Great Depression.

We must work as a country, in a bipartisan manner, to truly address this issue rather than use it solely for political gain and partisan gamesmanship.

The national debt, albeit too high, is essentially the country’s mortgage used to pay for things we need today — like roads, utilities and aircraft carriers — to create the productivity, and protection, that will allow us to repay that mortgage in later years.

The solution to our national debt eluded me until I read a recent article about Lee and the short sale of his house in Alpine.

Apparently the Lees had to agree with their bank to sell their dream house at a loss to both the Lees and the bank because they spent $1.1 million on the house in 2008, before the financial world collapsed around us.

Compounding the problem was Lee’s loss of his job in private practice and his move to the payroll of…

Read the full Op Ed HERE

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