The topic of discussion for this Constitution Monday comes from Article I.8.2: "Congress shall have Power to … borrow Money on the credit of the United States." This principle simply tells us that Congress has the power and authority to borrow money and create a debt against the credit of the United States.
Thomas Jefferson obviously did not like this clause in the Constitution because he stated, "I wish it were possible to obtain a single amendment to our Constitution. I would be willing to depend on that alone for the reduction of the administration of our government to the genuine principles of its Constitution; I mean an additional article taking from the federal government the power of borrowing."
According to W. Cleon Skousen, Jefferson also believed the following about debt: 1) freedom from debt is a key to human happiness, 2) public debt should not be passed from one generation to another, 3) a government should cherish its credit, 4) to saddle posterity with our debts is immoral, 5) public debt is not a public blessing, 6) public debt is a danger, 7) discharge of public debt is vital to a government's survival, and 8) public debt results in oppressive taxation. (See The Making of America: The Substance and Meaning of the Constitution, pp 392-395.)
I agree with Jefferson and Skousen: debt is not a blessing to us or our posterity and any debtor is in a dangerous position. It is good to be able to borrow money to handle an emergency; it is also good to keep the amount of debt at the lowest possible amount and to repay debt as quickly as possible. I believe that our nation is insane to borrow money from our enemies; I do not see any reason to give our enemies any power over us. Yet, our nation is deeply in debt to China. Why?
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