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Steve Winter
State Representative
District 3

July 22, 2011
"Raising the debt ceiling"

Steven Winter represents the towns of Newbury and Sutton, Merrimack District 3, in the NH House of Representatives.

Representative Winter is a member of the House Executive Department & Administration  Committee, The Special Committee on Public Employee Pension Reform and the Joint Legislative Committee on Administrative Rules (JLCAR).

"There can be no freedom or beauty about a home life that depends on borrowing and debt."  – Henrik Ibsen

As this is written, we are approaching our national debt limit. We are told that on August 2, the first United States default in our history would mean a loss of our economic leadership in the world and economic chaos. The sky will fall, markets will tumble, and hell will freeze over if we don’t raise the debt ceiling.

First of all, I think of my Master Card credit limit. If I hit that limit, do I default? No. Hitting that limit merely means that the credit card company will not allow me to continue borrowing money from them. If I still have income, my best choice is to cut my spending and begin paying off that debt. Or, perhaps, I could increase my income. But for many, that is not an option.

Where do I cut? The first thing I must do is look at my credit card statements for the past year. I can probably find that there are things on that card that were not necessities but were instead "wants". We come back to setting the priority of "needs" versus "wants".

Why would our country need to default? It will take-in about $205 BILLION in August. That’s enough to pay interest on the debt and make sure all of the Social Security and Medicare checks go out. Why does this administration continue to scare our citizens with unwarranted threats? It should make the cuts necessary to keep within our income – just as each family must do.

The problem is that the feds are scheduled to spend something in the range of $360 billion in August. How can it be that we’ve elected people who are spending $155 billion more than they are collecting in just one month?

We should tell Iraq and Afghanistan that after years of spilling the blood of our troops and spending our treasure, they need to take over their own nation building. We should tell Europe, South Korea, and Japan that after 65 years their cosmopolitan economies make them capable of defending themselves, then bring our troops home. We should cease sending foreign aid to the numerous countries that consistently vote against us at the United Nations. And we should stop our adventure in the Libyan civil war. We can no longer afford to be the world’s policeman.

I have heard it said (but I cannot confirm who said it) that this nation will never be able to pay off today’s $14 trillion debt much less the $20+ trillion debt projected for the future.

Where does this all end? It won’t end until the American people rise up and say, "NO MORE! STOP THE SPENDING!" Politicians at both the federal and state level have been buying votes by giving away other people’s money for years. It is unconscionable to put our children, and now our grandchildren, in debt so that we can enjoy all of the "wants" promised by our profligate government.


Steve Winter, Representative, Merrimack District 3
Newbury and Sutton, New Hampshire 

Telephone:  603-271- 3125 and 271-3319

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