A Zero Hedge Petition: Break Debt Habit, Freeze The Debt Ceiling

Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership.

                - Sen. Barack Obama, 2006


While Zero Hedge has been accused of disagreeing with President Obama's statements, ideas, and policies before, we would like to state on the record that we wholeheartedly agree with the President on this one occasion, with the caveat that it was uttered at a time when i) he was not a president, and ii) he presumably actually did in fact care about "our children and grandchildren" instead of simply indulging in an onanistic splurge of spending, bailing out beta chasing bankers and hedge fund managers, and, through his appointee Ben Bernanke, reducing the national currency of the United States to a smoking hulk of burnt toast. Superimposing Obama from 2006 with his current incarnation, threatens a schizoid break no less than would dropping Bono's two alter egos (Macphisto and The Fly) in the same room without a limitless supply of Thorazine.

Ironically, the President now has to completely backtrack on his rhetoric and must tell his adoring public that he was only kidding in 2006, being a young and foolish Senator, while the grizzled and cynical Obama of today is forced to convince another pack of young and foolish Senators to raise the US federal debt ceiling from $12.1 trillion to $13 trillion. Absent this approval, the US will likely default by mid-October.

So even as the President may no longer really care for the "children and grandchildren", 300 million other Americans do. Raising the debt ceiling (first to $13 trillion, eventually to $1 quadrillion+), and printing an infinite amount of infinitely devaluing pieces of printed cotton is easy. It is also wrong. This is especially true because the President is doing it in order to inflate his way out of the massive credit crunch that would force the entire US banking system to go bankrupt and subsequently restructure- like it is supposed to- if only it were left alone to its own devices. This is why, we at Zero Hedge, appeal to you, our readers, to join us in this petition to prevent the debt ceiling from being raised... and again... and again... until such time as it is merely a joke of a formality (if we are not too late), and the US descends ever faster on its way to sovereign insolvency and its new status as a Chinese vassal state. On the bright side, there will be renewed United States interest in Nepal.

Once we have collected your signatures, we will forward the petition over to members of Senate who will certainly not change their behavior, and who will absolutely pass Obama's debt ceiling increase request, but who will be made aware that an increasing number of Americans are watching their every step and grow increasingly disapproving of the actions taken by both the Senate and the Congress, as they pile on a skyrocketing and untenable debt burden for future generations, all with the simple goal of buying some more election goodies and making sure that the current banking system can indefinitely postpone its inevitable day of reckoning.

(Only your City and Zip Code will be displayed on Zero Hedge- (we collect Zip Codes for Congressional district identification) but your name will be forwarded to the United States Senate)

Anonymous's picture

I am sorry not to join in on the poor me syndrome and how terrible it is some have had to lose their six figure incomes. My immediate ancestry lost a hell of a great deal more than that from this GOVERNMENT! I am of the Burnt Thigh Nation in Rosebud South Dakota and I see We the People better quit worrying about what we will lose and take action...fight for what you believe in! We Lakota were the last fighting band of NDN's not fighting for money or prosperity but for God given liberties and freedoms being ripped out of our hands because the Government wanted the gold in the Black Hills... and we also put Custer(arrogant, overconfident wasicu)in his place! Nothing but savages with bows and arrows....

oh, and by the way, I am a woman and I see too many men in this country not acting like MEN, stand UP and fight!

5THTURNING's picture

I guess I shouldn't be suprised but I thought this

blog had more people than this..Yikes we maybe

doomed after all....and I was just trying to get

positive:  How many of us are not computers in

this market then?


A_MacLaren's picture

Is it too much to ask for to read the actual petition?


I have read your preamble, statement of background, request for signatures, and disclaimer/security assurance about personal data, but no where in this post, or in a link to it that I can identify, is an actual petition.


A proforma/example might read:


and concludes:

By signing this petition, you ask Congress to refuse to increase the debt ceiling and to operate the federal budget expenditures within the tax structure and receipts.


Bthewee's picture

8 out of the TOP Ten richest congress members are Democrat.




Yeah - We Dem’s understand the poor people in this country - NOT!!

Anonymous's picture

Have any of you considered that the US may not actually be in debt but that it's simply dipping into the 90-trillion or sooff-ledger account that no one sees? Perhaps all those call options the US govmnt bought and put options the sold at the bottom in March have recouped a few trillion or so. Have any of you considered that? It would have been idiocy for the government not to have tended to the family coffers the past 200 or so years. That is why deficits don't matter. What's a few trillion dollars to bail out the banks?

Anonymous's picture

I considered it and then my head exploded!

mt paul's picture






erich's picture

It is hard to believe people take online petitions so seriously.

I would hope the people in power would love online petitions, sure beats dealing with real life physical people.

Anonymous's picture

So seriously indeed.

As though anyone is actually "coming to knock on your door" over an online petition. Congress no doubt gets names from thousands of such wastes-of-virtual-signature daily.

Although I suppose it's great to know what my fellow Hedgers are proudly packing - I'll keep my gun in the safe and not bother you people by name-dropping it.

Anonymous's picture

I signed it, fyi I hid all my money in the freezer in case they nab me in the middle of the night.


Anonymous's picture

Good to know about the freezer thing.

Now what's your address and when will you be out of town for an extended period of time?

In fact, once I get your address, expect a knock on your door in the middle of the night, OK?

BM's picture
BM (not verified) Sep 11, 2009 10:35 PM


the bad news is that this petition is virtually futile.

the good news is that this bubble will burst too.

Anonymous's picture

An exercise in futility.

Anonymous's picture

So I guess the Tea Party march on Washington D.C. this weekend was another excercise in futility?

When Congress and the White House under Bush tried to pass the Amnesty bill a while back and the American people sprang into action flooding the Senate with emails, calls and petitions which resulted in stopping the bill from being passed. That was an excercise in futility?

When it comes to defending one's Liberty, there is no exercise in futility!

Evil Prevails When Good Men Fail To Act!

OrganicGeorge's picture

And how they cheered when Lehman was allowed to fail!


Just say'n be careful of what you wish for.

Anonymous's picture

And??? Gimme a break, if you think these "vampire squids" are benefitting society at all you are mistaken. Even if the markets would have crashed they would have done so temporarily and the things that were still worth something would have risen back up. I've had enough of this "too big to fail" crap. The bad banks need to go by the wayside, period. Just like numerous others have. This is the biggest heist in the history of the world.

Wake up.

OrganicGeorge's picture


It happens to be true, when Lehman went down most people cheered, I know I did.  At last they allowed failure!

Then all hell broke lose.

Personally I think a lifetime of hard labor in prison is too good for these bank scum and their enablers.

But capping the debt at this point in time will accoplish what?  It will kill social programs at a time when millions of Americains desperately need Government help to survive.  This proposal fits nicely with the Rt wings attempt to grow the deficits to kill all Federal social programs.

Yes the deficits are horrid but shutting down the government, which is what a cap will do, to make a point has already been done by the Republicians and it backfired. 

Righteous Indignation is fun but it accomplishes little.

erich's picture

My understanding is not all of the budget is spent on social programs.

I also think there is incoming tax revenue.

There are ways to raise money without borrowing it, and there are ways to cut spending without cutting viable social programs.

Anonymous's picture

I'd like to help out, but I'm long gold and silver.

I want a public option health plan, the F-22, cash for clunkers etc.

Anonymous's picture

Add me to the round up.
I've been depressed lately.

Anonymous's picture

Debt is wealth.

Anonymous's picture

While we're all organizing, Why not help this nice lady out?


Intriguing as her isolated call to arms may be, debtor revolt would be more effective if it drew on collective bargaining principles. You don't have a labor force anymore, but you do have Mongolian hordes of debt peons, and collectively they have life-and-death power over the financial sector. Here's a fantasy five-step plan to motivate some actual reform - or at least make lots of shit hit great big fans worldwide.

1. Publicize the program: collective consumer debt renegotiation with targeted banks. If renegotiation fails, enrolled borrowers will repudiate their entire debt on a specified deadline.

2. Enroll borrowers, who list the amount of their debts and their lenders.

3. Identify the first target bank, using criteria that can include:
• The bank's financial vulnerability
• Enrolled borrowers' aggregate debt
• The bank profile or notoriety.
Screen lenders from among FDIC problem banks, bailout beneficiaries, or abusive non-bank lenders.

4. Choose a percentage chargeoff to demand. Ideally, the reduction demanded in enrolled borrowers' debts would not bankrupt the institution, but public repudiation of the enrollees' entire debt would effectively make the institution insolvent.

5. Announce the first target bank and date: on the specified date, the bank shall forgive X percent of enrollees' debt or the enrollees will repudiate their entire debt and allow it to proceed to collection, at which point interest will no longer accrue.

6. ...

7. Profit! (No, actually, loss.) The immediate likely result would be disproportionate escalation by banks including government repression and attempts to criminalize the bargaining process. But the target bank is likely to be destabilized anyway, and the threat to other vulnerable banks could trigger another nice little credit event. Consumers will have asserted their power to dictate writeoffs even as government policy tries to defer recognition of losses. Real restructuring could begin with consumers at the table.

Sorry to run on.

Anonymous's picture

Im a fan but this is bold, do you have enough readship for this kind of effort yet?

Anonymous's picture

Who cares?

Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!

We're fighting for the Liberty of our nation and ourselves.

Slavery was not ended by the majority, but by the few willing to make a stand against the despotism of the tyrants.

Remember the Alamo!

andrew123's picture

Marla, I have tried to sign and have gotten an email confirm.  How can I email the information directly to you (I think you suggested someone else do this)?

Anonymous's picture

Almost at 1000 signatures and it only took you 24 hours. There are people's pets with Facebook pages who are more popular than this petition.

Anonymous's picture

Society in every state is a blessing, but government even in its best state is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one; for when we suffer, or are exposed to the same miseries by a government, which we might expect in a country without government, our calamity is heightened by reflecting that we furnish the means by which we suffer.

-Thomas Paine
Common Sense

The fear of signing it is what furnishes the means.

Anonymous's picture

Congratulations. You got 700 signatures. There are 304,059,724 in the USA. Obviously you're the voice of the people.

Anonymous's picture

He who strays from the paths traced by Providence crashes

Apocalypse Now's picture

Tyler & Marla-

I like the concept but believe this is naive because we all know the debt ceiling must increase.  That said, a true politician would use leverage to get a concession from the other side before agreeing to the increase.

So, my suggestion is to ensure that the already $12 trillion in national debt be fully audited, fully accounted for, and we understand where every dollar went.  This is of course tied to the audit the fed initiative - and Congress should not increase the debt ceiling until they receive all the details on funds flow.

How did we get here? We do not know because the fed will not share the information.  Now, we all know this is a big pyramid scheme, a black hole, a charade, and that it might even serve to benefit the broad interests of the USA (quite a few people enjoy getting SS & medicare checks even though we are technically bankrupt)- but we also know that friends of the printing press are benefiting more and when their banking friends lost by taking big bets they just put taxpayers on the hook for the losses.  In short, they just looted the treasury and won't state where they wired the funds.

And to all the ignorant out there that state the fed is already audited, I would like to inform you that you have a very low IQ.  The defense that the NY Fed has just made in response to the Bloomberg FOIA request is THAT IT IS A PRIVATE INSTITUTION AND IS NOT SUBJECT TO THE FOIA.  CHECKMATE.

We must tie the debt ceiling issue to the audit issue, without connecting the two this is haphazard.  We can increase the debt ceiling if the flow of funds can be reconciled and audited, otherwise we are doomed to repeat mistakes of the past.

Anonymous's picture


You are are nut, a fruitcake, and an total freak.

Also a weirdo.

Believe in that,

You're a lunatic.

Anonymous's picture

Recently I have been sending emails to the representatives in my state who all happen to be Democrats. That is why I found it amusing when as a republican I began receiving mass emails from the White House and David "I've sold my soul" Axelrod! Oh yeah there coming for me... someday... maybe... if the Commie Bastards last that long!

Anonymous's picture

HAHA as if CONgress gives a rat's ass about anything the people want. They will do what they always do which is the bidding of their keepers (banks, wall street, and big business).

LoneStarHog's picture

An Open Letter To The Messiah!

Dear Messiah,

Please note that the OTHER Messiah drove out the corrupt moneychangers and preached against them.

When will you get out of bed with the corrupt moneychangers and eradicate them from our society?

Thank you for your prompt attention in this matter, Oh Great Messiah!

With Hope & Change In Which I Can Believe,


SpartanTnT's picture

The magical number 666 signatures !!!

LoneStarHog's picture

Mine was the 666th.  Da Devil made me do it!

Anonymous's picture

666 signatures - flashin the devil horns!!!!!

Anonymous's picture

Wow. Less than 700 signatures. I'm less than impressed.

Add to that the insane right-wing gun toting survivalist freaks writing messages here and it takes down my respect for this site a few notches.

Marley's picture

I don't agree with the petition's diatribe, but did agree with the limit on the national debt.  ("You know, Paul, Reagan proved deficits don't matter," - can you guess the dick that said that?)  So I signed it.  And I also think a public option is necessary to correct the health care issue.

ShankyS's picture

Signed it. Will put links on my blog and many other places I frequent including facebook. Let's go VIRAL with this one!

Anonymous's picture

Shouldn't the Nation's liability side of their balance sheet simply be free to grow with it's asset side.

I would hope the debt 20-yrs from now will be much greater than it is now - which hopefully will be a byproduct of very productive years.

If you want to cap something - cap debt as a percetnage of income (GDP) or better yet interest expense as a percentage of income.

It would make sense to limit an individuals borrwoing capacity while their earning capacity grows.

Publishing headlines that we are bumpng up against the debt ceiling is fairly obvious and will be something that can be brought off the shelf every year in a simliar alarmist fashion.

Ben_the_Bald's picture

More than a petition this reads like a rant from Marla. Tell us where the real petition is. I'll read it and then decide if it's something worth forwarding to the right people. And that I would do by myself, I wouldn't trust you guys with my personal information, ever.

Whatta's picture

whut? you afeared of getting alittle more penile growth pill spam?


man up and sign the thing. take every opportunity you can to protest our government

Ben_the_Bald's picture

I don't need to man up. Look at my hairline!

Anonymous's picture

are you guys kidding me? Not raise the debt ceiling? That's like try to stop the tides from coming in. Complete and utter destruction of the USD is the only certainty at this point. Cut spending? Forget it. Raise taxes? Forget that too. This train wreck was set into motion in 1913. GTF out of the USD now and stop wasting your time trying to throw a sandbag in front of a massive tsunami.

grasshopper's picture

I have a fucking arsenal here, fuckers! Dirty bombs, daisy cutters, IEDs, canned cheeseburgers and even a tree out back for firewood!!


lol internet toughguys.

Gordon_Gekko's picture

Asking a government to limit its debt in a fiat money regime is like asking a heroin addict to stop using heroin while being surrounded by mountains of the stuff. To me, the answer is clear - the government will not stop until it has completely ruined the currency and our society. If you wish to know where America is headed, just take a look at some of the third world countries. Unfortunately, it's not Armageddon but a slow painful spiral downwards. And today, the entire world appears to be one big "third world" to me. Unless we change our ways for the better, mankind in it's present form is doomed to extinction.

Printfaster's picture

This is a joke, right?

No this is Zimbabwe.  The debt will keep increasing until the treasury disintermediates all private debt, assuring total destruction of any private economy.

Folks the reason we "need a healthplan" is that private society is broke.  Government has stolen your savings and your ability to pay for anything.  You are now in the hands of Robber MugAbeing running our government.

There is no credit left for private capital investment.  Socialism is the only way forward now until it bankrupts itself totally.  Not too far away by my reckoning.