"So low and hopeless are the finances of the United States, that, the year before last Congress was obliged to borrow money even, to pay the interest of the principal which we had borrowed before. This wretched resource of turning interest into principal, is the most humiliating and disgraceful measure that a nation could take, and approximates with rapidity to absolute ruin: Yet it is the inevitable and certain consequence of such a system as the existing Confederation."
by:
William Richardson Davie
(1756-1820) Governor of North Carolina (1798-1799), North Carolina delegate to the 1787-88 Constitutional Convention
Source:
speech in the Proceedings and Debates of the Convention of North-Carolina, Convened at Hillsborough, on Monday the 21st Day of July, 1788, for the Purpose of Deliberating and Determining on the Constitution Recommended by the General Convention at Philadelphia, the 17th Day of September, 1787: To Which is Prefixed the Said Constitution (Edenton, N.C.: Hodge and Wills, 1789).
http://www.learnnc.org/lp/editions/nchist-revolution/4285
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Reader comments about this quote:
Here we have a man of years ago, speaking a truth of today's relevance. A knowledgeable man with a clear head and good conscience aware of the dire circumstances and the inevitable consequences thereof being faced by a new nation. Where are people of this ilk today when we most need them? I give him five stars for bringing to light such an obvious problem. I believe the biggest problem our nation faces today is the fact that those in power actually do realize the delima we're in and are acting in concert to do all within their abilities to continue us down this path of distruction.
 -- zeitgeist, la crescenta     
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    ;-)
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Some things never change. The fact that we survived this doom and gloom under the Articles and have survived it for decades under the Constitution means we will survive it now. Have faith people, have faith. On the other hand it gets tiring knowing of the failure of the government and yes of We The People to run a better financail house. Let us rise up and demand that our debts be paid, taxes increased until the debts our paid and then demand a massive tax reduction. We owe to the future.
     -- Waffler, Smith     
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    Increase taxes to pay for this deception and bungling? Waff, you have got to be kidding! Better to send in your tax forms with "Account Overdrawn" scrawled across it. The more you capitulate to these criminals...the more they'll take (steal) from you.
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
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    What is your proposal Carlton to pay off 10 trillion dollars of US Debt.
     -- Waffler, Smith     
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    Waffler. Cutting taxes always increases productivity and increases the "money" that goes to the treasury. Raising taxes does just the opposite. As to paying off the national debt, don't hold your breath with the yahoos now running (ruining) the country. Do you actually think that Obama, Nancy, Harry, Barney, and the rest of the usual suspects have any notion of paying off the debt? Under this group of Marxists the debt will only get bigger. I'm sure our grandchildren will appreciate this. Bush spent like a drunken sailor but you ain't seen nuthin' yet.
     -- jim k, austin     
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    Waffler, Pay off the debt to "whom". Who is owed this debt? When you understand the Fed and its mandate you may see that the debt itself is artificial. It is as "created out of thin air" as the currency itself.
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
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    Carlton get real, the treasury owes China, Russia, Japan and others trillions. The tax system owes the Social Security System 1.5 trillion. If Jim K is correct it would seem that cutting taxes to zero would bring in more money. In fact their is a balancing act, a law of diminishing results whether taxes are to high or to low. Clinton had it just right and the budget was refreshingly in surplus for a number of years under his watch. With all of the years in the red we need to have surplus years for the next twenty. We can do it but first of all y'all got to get educated on reality. Carlton anyone who has government bonds is part of the debt owed by the US. I know I have a bundle of it myself.
     -- Waffler, Smith     
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    Waffler, education on reality has never been your strong suit. I've said this before but we know how you don't like facts. If you take the income tax out of all taxes collected in 2007; that is more than all taxes collected in 1997 (including income tax) So yes, if you cut out governmental larceny, more taxes will come in. Secondly, if codes, regulations, rules, statutes, etc. were passed that were in harmony with The Laws of Nature and Nature's God, (fiscal and otherwise) and enforced uniformly (and all others taken off the books) prosperity would once again return. Thirdly, return to a tangible monetary system of intrinsic value (among other things, dumping keynesin economics and the Fed) AND, Fourthly, but not necessarily lastly, the government reduce its spending to Constitutional levels, the debt would be paid off faster than any other way. But, since the Obamunist is hell bent on destroying this country, nun of that will come to pass. I hope all have sufficient canned food and regulation to see them through what's coming.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Waff, why don't we just send them a bunch of digits? Its not as though we owe them "real money". And good thing too, because that could lead to "real problems". I say we just print a bunch of cash and send it to China. If there's anything left over, we can use it for toiet paper. The Money isn't "money" Waff....its "currency", there's a world of difference. PS, I'm curious...what does the US owe China ll this curency for...cheap plastic crap? Poisoned food? The jobs we used to have?
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
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    "Humiliating and disgraceful" is such an apropos description of debt that can never be repaid. How fortunate that we've become used to being humiliated and disgraced over the many years of overspending. As for repaying the Chinese, perhaps it would be just if they weren't repaid considering the goods they sold us were made with child slave labor.
     -- Ken, Allyn, WA     
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    Your village, your city, your county, your state cannot run deficits year after year. If they do their will be a cut in services (street lights, paving, police, etcetera). In what type of logic do you all believe that you think it is okay for the Federal Government to do what no other government can do. We have debt and deficts because spending is too high and taxes are too low. We let 4000+ of our men and women be killed in a war we have not paid for (thanks to the policies of George Bush). Get real folks, get serious folks, become true and honest adult men and women and demand that we all become responsible about this stuff. Enough tongue and cheek childish dribble about far out politcal agendas and weird philosophies. STAND UP FOLKS FOR RIGHT AND HONOR!
     -- Waffler, Smith     
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    Waffler, you ignore HOW the nation prospered since this was penned. There have been several instances in US history where a national central bank was established like the one Davie is condemning. Hamilton brought about the first one and after nearly bankrupting the country, Jefferson killed it. Then promptly thereafter, the British (financed by the Bank of London which were stakeholders in the First Bank) invaded the US in the War of 1812. Since war and debt go hand in hand, the Second Bank of the US was formed to help pay off war debts. Jackson killed it during his term -- he was the only president in history to pay off the national debt. But the banksters NEVER stop trying to regain their stranglehold and they have LOTS of money to disrupt the tranquility of a nation. Of course, the War Between the States also brought in more debt based currency -- but Lincoln told the bankers in London to take a hike and issued US currency interest-free to pay for the war. While Jackson avoided several assassination attempts during his tenure, Lincoln was not so lucky. From there on, the bankers have been making war on our Constitutional republic. The Federal Reserve Banks came about in 1913 and were formed by the very same cartels tracing their roots to the Rothschilds who owned or controlled every bank in Europe. Again, less than 20 years after establishing a PRIVATE central bank, the economy went bust and came another depression -- this time really big. Little by little the Fed acquired the wealth of the nation culminating in the seizing of all gold in circulation (the entire gold money supply!!) and gave us pieces of paper that it issued at its leisure. Again war and central banking closely follow each other. And here we are again in 2009 without a Jefferson or Jackson in sight to take on the banks. In fact, the banks have got THEIR men in office -- just look at Obama's staff, all Wall Streeters!! This quote is as true today as it was at the founding of our nation.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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