Assume for a moment that you could increase the borrowing limit on your credit card any time you wanted, without even notifying the financial institution from which you got it. Now that would be one sweet deal.
Until you couldn't make the monthly payments. And until your spouse asked what you were trying to pull by increasing the family's debt without talking it over first.
Well, that's precisely what President Barack Obama wants to do. It is part of the plan he is demanding conservative lawmakers approve to keep the nation from going over the "fiscal cliff" when automatic tax increases and government spending cuts kick in on Jan. 1.
Current law requires that the executive branch can borrow money to run government only up to a limit set by Congress, the so-called "debt ceiling." Periodically, often after bitter debate over our ever-increasing national debt (nearly $16.4 trillion and growing), Congress has to increase the ceiling.
Obama is demanding he and future presidents be given authority to increase the ceiling on their own. That's crazy. Conservative lawmakers of both parties should reject the plan flatly. No president should be handed a blank check.
And no president should be able to trumpet tax increases that could only run the government for eight days as a solution to "fiscal cliff" talks. Congress and the president can't reduce the debt that threatens our economy and the future of our children without making hard spending decisions and generally being more frugal in the way taxpayer money is spent. And increasing taxes on the people who do the hiring in this country will only increase unemployment.
It's time for the president to lead rather than seek a political victory that accomplishes nothing.