Think about it: We’re past $16 trillion in debt so far, and we’re just fine. We have a pretty good scheme going to keep up the level of government we want: We take big loans from our children and then die before paying them back. And we have no reason to stop. What’s the worst that has happened so far? America’s credit was downgraded. And that hurt us how? It’s not like people are going to stop giving the federal government loans — it has nukes. Plus, the president has asserted that he can take out anyone he wants with drone strikes whenever he feels like it (“Want to know who’s on my secret kill list? I’ll give you a hint: No one who loans us money.”). So that brings us to the obvious question: Why not just put the entire federal budget on credit?
Are we just being suckers paying taxes? The point of taxes is that someone needs to pay our government’s bills, but considering the amount of debt we’ve run up with no problem, maybe that’s not true. It seems unfair that the politicians see no reason to cut spending, but we have to keep paying taxes like the federal deficit actually means something. So why not give our economy a big stimulus and just put all government operations on credit? The debt ceiling will now just be whatever numbers we actually have words for.
I like this idea!
The technique Frank J. is using here is called “reductio ad absurbem,” which is defined as:
Reductio ad absurdum (Latin: “reduction to absurdity”), also known as argumentum ad absurdum (Latin: argument from absurdity), is a common form of argument which seeks to demonstrate that a statement is true by showing that a false, untenable, or absurd result follows from its denial, or in turn to demonstrate that a statement is false by showing that a false, untenable, or absurd result follows from its acceptance.
Untenable absurdity seems as good a description as any of current American budgeting and economic policy. So why not embrace the absurdity?