Debt Culture


One thing I’m always hearing is that credit cards are what got our society into the sorry state it’s in now. I guess that’s partially true. I mean, I’ve seen people go overboard with spending money they don’t have on things they don’t need. And there’s that whole Caveat Emptor thing. I suppose my thing is that I don’t necessarily see going into debt as a bad thing, but I’ll admit I’m biased. If you want to go into debt to buy a new video game system, I’d probably be down with that. On the other hand, if it’s because you feel you have to buy name-brand clothing, then I’m not so sympathetic. Still, even the most outrageous spending from private citizens is small potatoes compared to what super-rich corporations will do. And while a regular person spending too much can expect a visit from the repo man, a corporation that falls on financial trouble can expect a bailout from the government. I’m oversimplifying here, mind you, but it really strikes me that this is a case of the swindlers somehow managing to place the blame on those they swindled, like a double-whammy on the poor. Yet we still see people calling for MORE freedom for businesses, under the name “deregulation” after one of its major adherents, President Ronald D. Reagulation. In all seriousness, though, haven’t we figured out by now that, when big business is allowed to do what it wants, that doesn’t include hiring any more than the bare minimum of employees, and DOES include encouraging consumers to spend more than they make? I don’t know whether blaming the victims is a majority position in this country, but people who hold this position often appear to be the loudest and most noticeable. Just look at how many people still blame the unemployment rate on people not wanting to work, despite the fact that very few jobs are available. Besides, I’m sure very few people WANT to work, but that doesn’t mean they WON’T, or that they don’t want the security that comes with a steady job. Some people will indeed take advantage of the system and cheat the welfare office or whatever, but to me that sounds harder than working. Unless I’m sorely mistaken, the problem isn’t unwillingness on the part of potential workers, but rather on the part of those who are supposed to be providing jobs.

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