Our esteemed President and his Congressional minions have reached yet another milestone (via ABC's Jake Tapper):
The government racked up a record-high monthly budget deficit of $220.9 billion in February, the Treasury Department announced today.
The latest flood of red ink brings the total deficit for the first five months of the current fiscal year to $651 billion, far exceeding the $589 billion shortfall for the same timeframe in the last fiscal year.
The government ended the 2009 fiscal year with a record $1.4 trillion shortfall. The Obama administration has forecast a $1.56 trillion deficit for this year.
Is it any wonder the young adults of America are losing hope?
Fewer than half said they believe they will be better off than their parents when they reach their parents' age.
Is it possible that this administration is going to end up being more Nixonian than Kennedy-esque or FDR-ish? Not to say that President Obama will have to resign or face impeachment - it's more about the effect he and his administration's actions have had on the psyche of the country. The generation that came of age in the 1960's and '70's had their faith in government dashed in the face of the corrupt reality, and the gradual decline in trustworthyness really hit the skids. After Nixon, there was a sense of disillusionment and distrust of government that permeated rank and file American's views of politics. This caused a backlash of suspicion that took a few decades to dull. There was a small uptick in the Reagan years, but that short period of faith was put back into its downward rut in the scandal-plagued Clinton years and beyond.
Then, suddenly, there was an abrupt, out of the blue 180 that occured the day Obama won the primary. Suddenly, government was the answer to a whole new generation, and all that good will was poured into the empty suit at the top of the ticket. He was a blank canvas on to which they painted their hopes and dreams, a beautiful, lush utopia in jewel colors, and they transferred their dependency from their parents to their government, which was embodied in one man.
Obama was elected on a wave of goodwill. He was lifted up as a shining example of what government could be. Unfortunately, as often happens, the reality just hasn't lived up to the hype. All of those college students and 20-somethings who supported him and looked up to him and his vision of a new utopia are now waking up to a harsh reality. He is just another politician out to spend their future just like all the rest.
With the country in the midst of a slow economic recovery with nearly 10 percent unemployment, the data finds a deep sense of gloom among 18-29 year olds. The grim mood could have immediate political consequences, and it could also shape that generation's long-term faith in government and in its ability to improve their daily lives.
This particular generation has much farther to fall, too, because at no other time in our history has there been such a pampered, coddled youth; nor has there been so many who saw the government, parent-like, as the answer to all the problems.
There seems to be a delicious irony in all of this.
After all, it was the hippy culture of the 1960's and '70's that gave birth to the whole 'never trust the government or anyone over 30' mentality. Now those same people are well beyond their 30's and in positions of power in our government. They are demanding, incredibly enough, absolute trust in government. Even more incredibly, they apparently have received it from the younger generations who have been gradually indoctrinated into acceptance of government as the answer to everything. Our youth have been taught that the nanny state is only out to serve them and take care of them, and they believed it, these priviledged children of overindulgent parents who took care of everything - they bought it hook, line and sinker. Until their beloved government went hog wild, pillaged their futures, and taught them the hard way that nothing in life is free. This seems to have created a suspicion backlash against those in power. Again. That whole "what goes around, comes around" thing is a real pain, isn't it?
Hopefully those kids who have had a sad wake-up call will realize that there is cause to hope, and that it resides in them. They are the hope for the future, not some politician or government entity.
This is a country built on dreams, and they are the dreamers. The people of this country got through the Great Depression and came out stronger for it. We can get through this - hopefully stronger and wiser. Our pampered youth are learning the hard way that nothing comes for free, and that a politician's promise of utopia comes with a hefty pricetag. But hopefully they will also learn that hard work, dedication and determination can deliver many wonderful things to those who dare.
Yes, our government has been frittering away their inheritance for decades, but that doesn't mean it can't be replaced. In order to do that, though, the first thing that needs to be replaced is those currently in power.
There are literally trillions of reasons why.