Friday, July 29, 2011

Debt and Famine - Boge

The spiraling US debt should cause us to re-examine how we define a disaster.

In the Western World, debt is the result of choice. We want and don't have so we print money. We want more and still don't have so we print more money.

The US dollar used to be linked to the gold standard which made it easily the best post war currency. But uncoupling the US dollar from the gold standard in the seventies and making it a defacto oil based currency through a deal with OPEC has proved to be a serious problem for the US.

The bad mortgage deals in the US is only part of the problem. I realize it is the one aspect that many people turn to as a scapegoat, but that would only be promoting a smaller cause to the status it does not deserve.

The real culprit is overspending. And before we blame the US, we should not that Europe is in a serious struggle as well. Canada is faring better.

So why does this matter?

When countries get into serious debt problems it prevents them from seeing the bigger picture.

When we borrow and borrow and borrow and borrow and nobody has the guts to say 'stop borrowing' at some point we will lose the ability to make our own choices and someone will make them for us. It is the same on a personal level when people sink in debt, it is the same on a national level.

We borrow and presume that inflation or better economic times will cover our inability to reign in our overspending.

The result is that when millions are starving to death in Africa, we simply don't see it clearly enough. We see it only as a sliver in the pie of all the troubles we have. Nationally, we are sinking in our own debt and so are not able to help those in need. We spend to much time ensuring our lifestyles stay protected that we lose sight of the lives that are unprotected.

Where to go from here?

I commend those governments that cut all non essential services because they could not balance their budgets. It is a step in the right direction.

You never know. Maybe once we get our eyes off of our own debt problem we might be in a better position to see the plight of others.

Ultimately, it is not a conservative or liberal problem. It is a lifestyle and priorities problem. We need to re-examine the scriptures to see what Christ taught about needs and wants.

1 comment:

Peter Black said...

Paul, I think your insights bring clarity, have the ring of common sense and truth, and are instructional.
Hmm, while we could bemoan an apparent lack of these qualities in international political figures, you rightly indicate, in the use of "we," that it comes down to us as individuals "to re-examine the Scriptures to see what Christ taught about needs and wants."
Thanks for the needful "Ouch!" :)

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