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Letter: Our soaring national debt

History is very clear about this. America was founded as a republic. However, over the years, it has morphed into the two- (or three- or four-) party system that we have today, except that now we now call it a democracy. With it came the welfare state -- not that everyone is on welfare, but we've created so many entitlement programs that it almost seems like it.

President Cleveland pretty well summed it up when he said, "Once the coffers of the Federal Government are opened to the public, there will be no shutting them down again." He went on to conclude, "It is the responsibility of the citizens to support their government. It is not the responsibility of the government to support its citizens."

Everyone should be familiar with the name Karl Marx. For the benefit of those who aren't, he was a Communist sympathizer who is credited with writing the "Communist Manifesto." Much of the liberal (progressive) movement in this country is centered around that infamous document. Marx is also credited with making the following statement: "A Democracy is not a form of government to survive. For it will only succeed until its citizens discover they can vote themselves money from the treasury. Then they will bankrupt it."

Sound familiar? Our national debt has risen to a point that is almost unmanageable. Had we dealt with it swiftly and aggressively in the 1970s, we might have been able to control it, or quite possibly have even eliminated it. However, neither the American people nor our politicians had such a mentality. Consequently, our debt has risen to astronomical proportions.

To better understand the real meaning of money, it's important to put it in terms that we can all understand. For example, a million dollars, in tightly bound $1,000 bills, would make a stack four inches high. A billion-dollar stack of $1,000 bills, identical to the first, would make a stack 300 feet high, while an identical trillion-dollar stack of $1000 dollar bills would measure almost 63 miles high!

It's not uncommon to hear the trillion-dollar figure used today. That's what's scary!

Norm Baker