Has the pursuit of the American Dream gone too far? For the current generation it seems the American Dream has become the pursuit of material prosperity. People are working more hours to purchase larger homes, expensive cars, and many other material possessions to please themselves and their families.
Americans feel like nothing can stop them from buying everything they believe they deserve, even if they don’t have the money to pay for it. When the cash runs out, credit cards are there to save the day! Credit and loans may save the day, but at the end of the week they are destroying the country. You can only live on credit for so long. In time, it has to come crashing down.
Our economy has been driven by greed and selfishness for so long and, contrary to what we think, it can’t last forever. People have bought houses, cars, computers, clothes, and too many more items to list on credit many times knowing they are not going to be able to pay for it. It’s amusing that people call the effects they have purchased on credit their own when clearly they don’t own them if they haven’t paid for them. Banks continue lending out money and seemed surprised when they don’t get it back. People should learn to balance their checkbooks and spend with limits.
The outcome of this credit driven society is the current financial problem the country is facing. AIG recently declared bankruptcy. The stock market faced its largest drop in a one day period this week losing 777 points and Wall Street remains unstable. Instead of accepting the consequences of our actions, our answer is to ask the government for help. Which, by the way, is an awesome idea since the government is sitting on approximately 10 trillion dollars worth of debt itself.
The government’s answer to our problems: let's use money we don’t have to bail out people who are in trouble because they used money they didn’t have, and we will call it a bailout, a $700 billion bailout. According to a current News 9 poll, 62 percent of Oklahomans are against the bailout plan. I have to agree with them.
What is sad is how the government can automatically magically come up with $700 billion dollars to bail out these multimillion dollar companies which have gotten themselves into their own problems. Yet the government can’t come up with $700 billion dollars to feed starving children in our own country and help pay health care for sick families.
One out of every four children in Cleveland County will go to sleep hungry tonight. My dad, who is a police officer in the city of Duncan, shared a story with me this summer of a little boy that broke my heart. This boy was taken to the hospital that was required to turn his mother and her very sick son away because they did not have health care. The boy died a few days later.
That America is something that is deserving of a $700 billion dollar bailout bill. What about the small business owner that is trying to make it but loses everything. Is he allowed to call up the government and cry for a bailout? Not all are as privileged as those the government is working to rescue.
What is also frustrating is this bailout bill will only add to that debt America currently owes. What people need to realize is that someone is going to have to pay for it sometime. Most likely it will be us. If not us, it will be our children and our grandchildren. Because of previous generations we may never have the opportunity to own nice homes or drive nice cars. We may never get the chance to take out a loan to send our children to school because others before us have abused that right.
It’s unfortunate for the people who have chosen to live on less to avoid living in debt. The people who spend wisely and buy only what they need. The families who are reasonable and don’t dress their kids in designer clothes or shower them with the newest technology because they know they can’t afford it. Those families should be commended. It is families that sacrifice the nicer things in life that are going to be paying for the mistakes the selfish Americans have made.
A government bailout is a stupid idea. How can the government plan to correct a problem by using resources it does not have? Let’s get our priorities straight. If we need things to spend money on lets start by paying for stuff that benefit those who are in real need.