It pains me to hear people open up and discuss the debt they have incurred. The pain is not the result of angst or anger towards the person, but more a deep felt sorrow for the situation they are in. It’s comparable to seeing an animal stuck in a bog that continuously fights to free itself from the muck. As the animal fights to free itself from the trap it has found itself in, it either retards its own progress, remains stuck in its current state, or can only make very slow strides to stable ground.
Frivolous debt; that debt which cannot be leveraged for tax purposes or is not incurred for the generation of future wealth (e.g. A farmer taking out a loan at the beginning of a season.), represents a form of voluntary enslavement. Selling your ability to make future decisions freely may sound a little preposterous, yet many people every day willingly limit their freedom of choice because of an unquenchable desire to consume.
A troubling message has been echoing for years. It has been told over and over again that the individual consumer in society (U.S.) accounts for approximately 70% of measured GDP activity. This has led to individuals foolishly thinking that their unchecked consumption has a transcending virtue. Not only is their thirst for more stuff and entertainment being temporarily pacified, but they are also spurring the economy. Glory be to the consumer!
Your own fiscal health is primary. Going on a consumption binge in an effort to breathe life into a weak economy is secondary.
Without going into a discussion about limited resources and their economic allocation, consider where our man of consumption stands. Spending beyond one’s means is quite similar to eating beyond ones means. When a person regularly eats beyond their body’s needs, they will gain weight. For a period of time the increased amount of weight will be negligible. Some minor inconveniences may occur, but likely nothing to cause a serious shift in eating habits. Yet, the impact cannot be ignored. Whether it’s mobility, energy, health, or other measures of well-being, the extra weight is a form of baggage that is a hindrance.
Consumption via the use of debt is akin to adding extra body weight as the result of over eating. Debt is analogous to fat that weights a person down when considering future choices. It becomes a force that controls the person. The power of enslavement places the debt as the master and the debtor as the slave.
People incurring frivolous debts are living in a dream that they are soon to realize is a nightmare. The ability to consume today on the debt of tomorrow cannot be expected to exist in perpetuity. Once the line of credit is exhausted, the debt still lives. Do you want to live in a future where you serve yourself or a future where you have enslaved yourself to the debts of your past?