Lack of common sense about household finance bodes ill for nation’s fiscal future
By Chris Ingram
If Americans have ever wondered why our country is in such a fiscal and financial mess, all they need do is look in the mirror.
Earlier this year, Bankrate.com released a survey showing that 37 percent of American homeowners had absolutely no idea what type of mortgage they had on their home. That is, they didn’t know if it was a 30-year fixed, a 5-year ARM, or what interest rate the loan carried.
Many of these are the same people who will do their civic duty and go cast a vote for president in November, as well as elect congressmen, governors, state legislators and countless town councilmen, commissioners, school board members and the like, all across the country.
Now I don’t know about the rest of you, but my house is the single largest investment and debt in my household. I know that it’s a 30-year note with a fixed rate of 6.25 percent and that after making monthly payments of $2,000 for several years the principal has dropped a whopping $387.29. What a scam! But hey, it works. I own my own home. Well, sort of.
Don’t get me wrong. It doesn’t really bother me that nearly four out of 10 homeowners in this country are certifiably stupid. That’s their business. What bothers me is this same bunch of morons vote.
Seriously folks, do you think these four out of 10 who don’t know squat about their own finances, have any clue what the national debt is? Or what it means? Or have any idea how we are going to pay for it? Absolutely not. And what about Social Security? Do you think these voters know how it works, that it is close to going broke, or that there isn’t a politician in Washington, D.C., who has a viable plan to fix it? Of course not.
For the record, these are probably the same people who are now defaulting on their home loans and looking for the government (that’s you and me) to bail them out. They shouldn’t have ever been homeowners in the first place. But greedy banks and loose government regulation allowed the sub-prime mortgage crisis to happen. The sad part is that taxpayers will probably end up bailing them out. And, God forbid, if Hillary Clinton gets elected, she wants to put a five-year freeze on interest rates. We need some government regulation. But geez, Hillary, talk about overregulation!
Do you think these people understand that the ridiculous “economic stimulus” package passed by the Democratic majority in Congress and signed by President Bush is just more debt that our kids and grandkids are going to be saddled with? Of course they don’t. All they know is they’ll get their check for $500 from Uncle Sam, drive the ol’ minivan down to the local Wal-Mart, where they’ll buy a bunch of cheap crap they don’t need – all of it made in China.
What they don’t realize is the only winners in this game are the Chinese who run the factories that make the products we buy and the Chinese who buy many of the government notes we use to finance our debt.
Oh yeah, and don’t forget the scoundrels in Washington win, too. Because those four out of 10 voters (and then some) will be so thankful to the politicians who “gave them $500” so they could buy all that extra crap made in China, they’ll re-elect the very people who got us in this mess in the first place. Democrats and Republicans. They’re all bankrupting our nation’s future. And no one appears to give a damn.
Chris Ingram is the president and founder of 411 Communications a corportate and political communications firm, and publisher of Irreverent View. Ingram is a frequent pundit on Fox News and CNN, and has written opinion columns for the Washington Times, UPI, Frontpage Florida, and National Review online. E-mail him at: Chris@411Communications.net