Can I Please Have a "Debt Ceiling" Too?

I have always thought that if anyone had a brain the financial world should have collapsed when the US "debt ceiling" was first enacted, since it amounts to a declaration of total financial irresponsibility by the largest participant in that world[1].

I wish that I could have got away with the same thing myself - but who would have given me a mortgage or credit card if I had loudly announced that once my debts exceeded a certain amount I would stop paying them off?[2].

 
1 - Apparently James Fallows at The Atlantic thinks so too
 
2 - Of course if I had been living in the US and had responded to any of the many TV offers of "Bankrupt? No job? bad credit? No worries! We have a loan for you" I might have found willing takers, but I suspect that would only have worked if there was some family asset that they were hoping to get their hands on. And I suppose it's hardly their fault that when all those assets went on the market the values collapsed for them and everyone else. No, wait a minute! It IS their fault, so why the fuck aren't they all in jail?

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