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Jerry Shenk


Government Sticking Young Americans with Bill

by Jerry Shenk
 

Young Americans, most of whom voted for President Barack Obama, face a daunting, uncertain future.

But they're learning.

Polls reveal that, after six years of measurable negative results, many young voters, Millennials, have rejected "Hope and Change."

Millennials are catching on that America's Founders thought that your stuff is yours -- and the government's stuff is yours, too.

Progressives think your stuff isn't really yours until the government says it is -- and your stuff exists only to promote "social justice" and to fuel an ever-growing leviathan state.

Millennials are beginning to understand that, if they want government to stop taking their stuff, government must be forced to spend less money.
But, kids, your money has already been spent. Never mind that many of you haven't yet earned any of it.

America's debt has reached $18 trillion— up 75 percent in six years — and counting. The payments will come due before your kids are born and continue long after they begin to work and pay taxes.

Government policies on taxes and spending aren't just financial issues.
Because there is a moral (as well as legal) obligation to repay it, the debt with which the political class has pre-burdened you and future generations is immoral on its face.

Conventional wisdom has it that President Barack Obama's liberal agenda is based on broad support from young, hip, pop-culture-savvy Americans.

However, in their economic manifestations, the president's policies are distinctly anti-youth and, in some cases, reactionary — like preserving the unsustainable status quo on Social Security.

Too many young people, aged 25 to 35, are chronically unemployed.
Recently, unemployment among early-twenty-somethings exceeded 15 percent, and remains much higher among young blacks and Hispanics. Many people having jobs are underemployed, part-timers or outside their specialties. National debt per person exceeds $53,000, far higher than six years ago.

The massive debt run up by America's political class will inevitably result in decades of budget cuts, inflation and higher taxes.

As they mature, marry, try to buy homes and raise children while still servicing student loans, today's youngsters will realize they've been had and resent the burden of repaying debts incurred by their antecedents.
It's astonishing to seniors who grasp simple math that any member of a generation facing a lousy job market while carrying cumulative student loan debt exceeding $1.3 trillion remains receptive to Obama's incessant appeals for higher taxes, greater spending and opposition to sensible reforms.

If entitlements aren't reformed, the escalating costs of guaranteeing their solvency will fall on a so-far-compliant younger generation already servicing large personal debts on smaller incomes.

Experiencing the weakest economic recovery since the Great Depression, enough Americans, including Millennials, now disapprove of Obama's economic "management" to send his approval ratings into Bush 43 territory.

Obamacare remains unpopular; premiums are rising; its taxes are kicking in; the law is discouraging new hiring and making more Americans part-timers.
In the hope that his "legacy" will not be limited to the damage he's done to America and, especially, America's young people, Obama uses the same tired shtick -- meaningless oratory -- that originally appealed to young voters.
With Obama's insistence on more of the same, the economy will remain mediocre. Obamacare's promises won't be fulfilled. So the White House has cynically launched an all-out culture war.

Cultural warfare is the only thing Obama has left with which to distract Americans from his dismal record -- a record on which he couldn't and didn't run for re-election -- and from the fact that that he has primed America for a massive fiscal crisis.

But, race, "reproductive" rights, gay rights, and an imaginary "war on women" are relatively frivolous distractions in the face of catastrophic national default.

Don't buy it. Don't be distracted. Keep your eyes on your futures. Hold Washington politicians accountable for the disastrous financial mess they've engineered and handed you.

Knowledge is power. Acquire some.

America needs honest, principled politicians with the courage to speak truth, act responsibly and govern wisely, and citizens informed and concerned enough to face and accept facts.

Find the former, and be the latter.

Because, ultimately, America's burden is yours — and your kids' — to bear.


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