Debt-Free – The Term Americans Forgot

It’s amazing to think that only 50 years ago most Americans lived a debt-free lifestyle. The country has only been around a little over 200 years and how quick people forget the lessons they learned in the past only to repeat them over and over again. Debt is what collapsed the great Roman empire and every empire that followed. At the end of Rome, the government was taxing the citizens at over 80% while at the same time having their own form of quantitative easing by adding tin and other metals to the denarius making it virtually worthless. In repetitive fashion and not learning from the past, the United States is now printing $85 billion a month under QE3. I guess QE1 didn’t work so they needed QE2, then “the Twist” and finally QE3 which should really be called QE infinity because there is no ending date on it. In reality, the US has turned $800 billion into $4.3 trillion. When you look to history to see what happens when a country does this, hyperinflation sets in. Many experts are predicting that the US will never be debt-free again outside of bankruptcy. That is of course if the country could file bankruptcy. The problem with the US filing bankruptcy is there is no one to pick up the pieces and wipe out their debts.

It is no different between the government and its citizens as the majority of Americans are now buried under a mountain of debt. It’s hard for many of us to remember the days of being debt-free and having a savings account. It was recently reported that young adults are leaving college with $27,000 in school loans and $25,000 in consumer debt. They haven’t even taken a job yet and they already owe $52,000. The sad thing is most of these double down and try to further their education because they can’t get a job. They then end up with over $100,000 in debt and no way to pay for it. The scary thing is, student loan debt will never go away, it will follow them for the rest of their lives unless a catastrophic illness or accident happens and they are unable to work. Other than that, the debt is like an embarrassing tattoo that someone got when they were drunk and it’s next to impossible to get rid of it. What happened to the days of being debt-free and living within your means? For the average American, it’s not much better. Few months back it was reported that the average American has $16,000 in credit card debt. With the decline in wages over the last five years the same individual only makes about $35,000 a year, down from $42,000 a year prior. Our forefathers of this great nation are probably rolling over in their graves as they put into place curbs in the Bill of Rights and the Constitution to protect the country from ending up like it is. The problem is, just like the Bible says, we live in a fallen world that is led by sin. The Bible doesn’t say that money is the root of all evil, it says, the love of money is the root of all evil and that my friend is where our problems lie.

The banks are no help at all as they are putting Americans further and further in bondage to debt. The only way to break the cycle is to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy when things get tough. People buried under a mountain of bills and are paying minimum payments are just kicking the can down the road. Living paycheck to paycheck is no way to live and they should consider speaking with a bankruptcy attorney to see if filing to become debt-free is even a viable option for them. Filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy will wipe out a large amount of unsecured debt quickly and easily. The bankruptcy code is continuing to change and that’s why it’s best to discuss the matter with a bankruptcy attorney. As the government keeps changing the rules on the average folk, it’s best to be proactive when it comes to financial matters and file bankruptcy before it is too late. As the laws continue to change in favor of the big banks, it would no longer surprise me if the government brought back debtor’s prisons.