- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 2, 2011

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

I don’t necessarily identify myself with the Tea Party, but I certainly believe the onslaught of criticism it is receiving in regard to the debt ceiling is misplaced, disingenuous and hypocritical.

Politicians on both sides of the aisle, as well as those who comment on the news, would do well to remember that Tea Party politicians have been in office less than eight months. It wasn’t they who drove this country to the economic ruin that we’re threatened with today - it was the establishment of Republicans and Democrats who’ve held office for decades and are guilty of greed, nepotism and negligence.

This ruling class, enabled by the media, lobbyist groups and an apathetic general public, have racked up nearly $15 trillion in debt and now seem shocked that this country could lose its undeserved AAA credit rating.

According to the U.S. government website, total tax revenue in 2010 was roughly $2.5 trillion. This is equivalent to someone earning $50,000 having $300,000 in credit card debt. It’s unsustainable and undeserving of a perfect credit score. Few individuals or banks would loan this person more money and expect to get it back.

But the people who call for mandating fiscal discipline by tearing up the government’s blank check are derided as hobbits, extremists and tyrants. If those who say “enough” are the hobbits, then those who are saying “more” - including Sen. John McCain, President Obama and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid - bear an uncanny resemblance to Gollum obsessing over his “precious” ring.

Raising the debt ceiling is the equivalent of medicinal marijuana - it’s not going to cure the patient’s cancer, only suppress the symptoms as he dies.

SHAWN KELLER

Fort Bragg, N.C.

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