When government spends on the scale Washington’s got used to, that’s not a spending crisis, it’s a moral one.  The Irish have a useful word for the times -flaithiulacht- which translates to ruinous generosity, invariably with someone else’s money.  There’s nothing virtuous about “caring”, “compassionate”, “progressives demonstrating how caring and compassionate and progressive they are by spending money yet to be earned by generations yet to be born.  That’s what “fiscal conservatives” often miss: this isn’t a green eyeshade issue.  Increasing dependency, disincentivizing self reliance, absolving the citizenry from responsibility for their actions: the multi-trillion dollar debt catastrophe is not the problem but merely the symptom.  It’s not just about balancing the books, but about balancing the most basic impulses of society.  These are structural and, ultimately, moral questions.  Credit depends on trust, and trust pre-supposes responsibility.  So, if you have a credit boom in an age that has all but abolished personal responsibility, it’s not hard to figure how it’s going to end.

from Mark Steyn’s After America

tips to Gary Meyers