Common Sense: Give Em an Inch...

We're still getting an earful over our push for a tax cut.

I say it's long overdue.

Some of you think I'm long overdue for a kick in the rear and that the surplus could be put to better uses.

This from Walter Cole, Los Angeles:

"I don't think you know jack about the economy or business. If you did, you would be out making money and creating jobs, instead of embarrassing yourself on a lousy network like Fox."

Jeff Crane, Fort Myers Beach, Florida:

"You say the surplus is our money, so give it to us... first of all, national debt is our debt, you don't seem to talk about government sending you a bill to pay off our debts."

Here's why, Jeff. I don't trust the government to pay off the debt even if it promises to do so, even if it puts the surplus in a lock box and vows never to open that box for any other purpose.

The way I figure it, Jeff, the government's a lot like me in a bakeshop. The will is there, but the power is not.

It's hard for me to keep my hands off those napoleons. It's hard for Uncle Sam to keep his hands off that cash.

You and many others rightly argue that if the government targeted that extra dough to pay off the debt, all would be right with the world. But how do you know it will?

The track record, much like me in that bakeshop, paints a very different picture. Because time and again, Congress has proven that left with some extra cash, it will more than extra spend.

Keep this in mind, Jeff, that's your cash. That's my cash. That's all our cash. And I trust you a lot more with that money than I do Uncle Sam with that money.

I'm not saying that Congress' intentions aren't good. It's just that the results are almost always bad.

I just don't trust Washington to do what it says. It would be like me saying, "Jeff, all my lunch money now is going toward health snacks: fruit and salads. And not a penny — not a penny, mind you — to napoleons, or cannoli's or junk. Not a penny."

How long do you think I can stick to that?

I'll save you the trouble — not long.

But here's the difference, Jeff. When I cheat, I have only myself to blame. When the government cheats, we're all to blame.

Would you give me a free pass in a bakeshop? It's one thing for me to get fat on my money, quite another for Uncle Sam to get fat on yours.