Pay the debt thou hast contracted… Release thyself from bondage. (Doctrine and Covenants 19:35)
Those are some strong words. The fact that the Lord equates debt with bondage is something that we should all keep in mind.
Currently the US is facing some of that hardest of economic times we have ever faced. The main cause of this “recession” is the copious amounts of debt that the citizens and the government itself has allowed ourselves to get into. People borrowed money in order to buy houses they could not afford otherwise. The government passed regulation to allow people to borrow money even though there was a high risk of default. The government has been borrowing money in order to meet the obligations it has set upon itself for the last few decades. Frankly, we are in bondage to our debtors.
As Latter-day Saints we are counseled on a frequent basis to avoid getting ourselves into debt. It is nothing new. In 2005, President Thomas S. Monson, then the First Counselor of the First Presidency, quoted J. Ruben Clark Jr.
It is a rule of our financial and economic life in all the world that interest is to be paid on borrowed money. …
Interest never sleeps nor sickens nor dies; it never goes to the hospital; it works on Sundays and holidays; it never takes a vacation; it never visits nor travels; it takes no pleasure; it is never laid off work nor discharged from employment; it never works on reduced hours. … Once in debt, interest is your companion every minute of the day and night; you cannot shun it or slip away from it; you cannot dismiss it; it yields neither to entreaties, demands, or orders; and whenever you get in its way or cross its course or fail to meet its demands, it crushes you. (In Conference Report, Apr. 1938, 102–3., Quoted in 2005 Conference Address)
That was in the 30s. President Monson is speaking of today. We need to avoid debt.
This is not just counsel for individuals. We should also practice this as a government. Today, almost all the states in the Union have passed Constitutional amendments that prevent their state governments from going into debt. Unfortunately, the Federal Government has not been living up to that expectation. We are currently in debt to the order of $14 Trillion (with a ‘T’). With current spending projections in mind, that is set to double over the next 10 years.
We need leaders who are willing to end this debt and get us out of bondage. We will not find those leaders within the Republican or Democratic parties. Only the Libertarian party has made ending federal debt a priority.
Government should not incur debt, which burdens future generations without their consent. We support the passage of a “Balanced Budget Amendment” to the U.S. Constitution, provided that the budget is balanced exclusively by cutting expenditures, and not by raising taxes. (2.4 of the Libertarian Platform)
Once again, only the Libertarian Party’s platform matches with the counsel of the Lord and his anointed servants. Will we continue on this path of increased spending and debt, or will we vote for those who have made it a goal to end our Federal Debt and save our children from paying for the excesses we think we need now?