AUTHOR: Sean Savage | POSTED: 10/15/12 12:45 PM
CATEGORIES: Daddy on The Fly
“Our country’s greatest threat is not Iran or China, it is the disease of spending beyond our means.”
There is good reason I make you save fifty percent of every dollar you bring in. I want you to learn an important life lesson and since we’re all creatures of habit, I figure this is the best way to get you to develop this habit now. I know it works. I grew up under a similar mandate which helped foster a self discipline and appreciation for the value of saving money and the reward of this lesson has been great!
Save before you spend; Spend only what you can afford; Live behind your means.
Unfortunately, I think it’s a difficult lesson for children to grasp. Instilling counter cultural values in kids is always a challenge, and nothing seems more “against the flow” than teaching children to control spending. After all, save before you spend; Spend only what you can afford; Live behind your means are virtues currently absent in our own government.
For adults, like me, who were taught by their parents that hard work always pays off, and to keep spending in check so as never to have to borrow money, it is inconceivable how our government is digging a financial hole all of the way to China—literally. You see overspending is a disease. Whether it’s a person with a credit card and no self-control, or a government willing to indebt itself to a communist country, spending more than what’s coming in is a horrendous pattern in need of immediate reversal.
The good news is reversing the course of a spending disease is not very difficult.
Millions of families around our country, set their spending level below their income level. Your mom and I’ve done this from the very beginning. That’s why Drew’s earliest years were spent in a $350 a month apartment with second hand clothes, and limited activities. It wasn’t the most glamorous beginning, but by living with self-discipline early, we eventually were able to slowly improve our life style. There were sacrifices involved but our priorities were well placed.
We were planning for the future by working hard, saving, and controlling our spending.
There are so very few public examples of financial self discipline. After all, one would think it would be reasonable to expect our government to balance its budget but we have been living in a spend-happy country for many years and administrations now.
And that makes me worry even more. If the spending disease is allowed to advance the consequences will be dire. Valuable government services (i.e. defense, Medicare, social security, Medicaid, etc.) are in the path of the disease, and will ultimately suffer greatly if this disease is not treated. The private sector will be damaged, as well.
Everyone hurts when a budget is not balanced. How would we be able to support those less fortunate if we didn’t spend less than we earn? The same holds true for the government. The government is but years away from having to begin to pull the support for those in society who truly need help.
So I’m imploring you and everyone else who is fiscally responsible to send an emphatic message to the powers that be. We have a lot hanging in the balance and it’s my hope we look back at this moment in history as one in which we collectively fix this problem for future generations.
Balance thy budget. It’s the most ethical way to live!