Passing Debt on to the next generation

An argument you frequently hear against government deficit spending is that it’s not proper to pass our debt on to the next generation. As a general principle, this is certainly true. Unfortunately, those making this argument are often expressing disagreement with what the money is being spent on, rather than on the total amount of spending. As a contemporary example, witness the Democrats who argued so fervently against deficit spending when they were out of power, but are now quite eager to expand the deficit to cover their pet projects.

However, there are circumstances when deficit spending is not only proper, but necessary. For one example, think of a new government building. If that building will be used for the next 50 years, it’s completely appropriate to pay for that building over a 50 year span. Even though we’re passing that debt on to the next generation, the debt is attached to a building they will still be using. An even more extreme example is war debt. It was less than a year that the United Kingdom finished paying off its World War II debt. Had they not passed the burden of paying for World War II on to their children and grandchildren, those generations might not have their own nation to support. Those generations clearly enjoy the benefits of the debt their parents and grandparents ran up, so it’s not inappropriate for them to bear some of the responsibility for it.

As a final point, why are so many of those who are quick to argue that it’s wrong to pass a burden on to the next generation so eager to support the supposed right of a woman to make sure a member of that generation doesn’t exist? If it’s wrong to make the next generation bear our burdens through a financial debt, why is it acceptable to make them bear our financial or psychological burdens by paying with their lives through abortion? Speaking for myself, and most would no doubt agree, I’d rather be in debt than dead.

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