The Debt Ceiling: Christian Grey Tortures Anastasia With Talk of the Crisis

charlie hunnamJust when we were getting used to the government shutdown (not really) another government crisis looms: The debt ceiling. The way people talk about it, hitting this deadline (October 17) sounds like economic Armageddon. Debt ceiling crisis = zombie apocalypse. Is it really that bad? And what is the debt limit crisis, anyway? You're not the only one mulling over these scintillating questions. Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele are also getting worked up over the debt ceiling. Let's see what they have to say.

  • I'm Worried About The Debt Ceiling


    Edward Le Poulin/Corbis

    Babe, can we talk? Can you please pull that out of me for a moment? I just... I don't know. It's probably nothing. But, um, [bites lip] I'm really worried. About the debt ceiling? Like, it's this crisis that's looming? By October 17 we will only have enough money to pay 68 percent of our bills for the following month? And we're still in the government shutdown so how are we ever going to deal with that, too? Know what I mean? Aw... I probably don't know what I'm talking about.

  • The Debt Ceiling Is How Much the US Government Can Borrow


    RD / Larsen ./Retna Ltd./Corbis

    Yeah, Babe. You should be worried. The debt ceiling is the total amount of money the U.S. government can borrow to pay for things like Social Security and Medicare benefits. We exceeded our limit of $16.7 trillion back in May, and the Treasurey Department has been very naughty, finding sneaky ways to keep borrowing anyway. The federal government should be punished -- we should cut federal spending. That would hurt... good.

  • We Can't Avoid Lifting the Limit by Cutting Federal Spending


    Chris Pizzello/ /AP/Corbis

    Um, well. I know you know way more about this than silly ol' me. But, like, I thought if we stopped the government from borrowing to pay its obligation we'd also have to stop all discretionary spending on things like the military and education? We'd even have to stop spending on mandatory programs like Social Security. Then we'd have to raise taxes just to keep going, and that plus deep cuts could send us into a recession. But what do I know? I'm just a silly girl who doesn't know what she wants until someone ties me up.

  • What's the Worst that Could Happen If the Cap Isn't Lifted?



    Oh right, yeah. That stuff could happen. I knew that. I was just testing your knowledge. Well done, my student! Heh. Anyway, what's the worst that could happen if we don't lift the cap? It'll be practically painless.

  • Grandma Stops Eating


    Dave Bedrosian/Geisler-Fotopress/dpa/Corbis

    What's the worst that could happen? Um, Grandma could stop eating! And unlike when I forget to eat, when Grandma doesn't eat she could actually die. If we run low on cash we may have to withhold Social Security checks, and Medicare and Medicaid benefits. We might screw over holders of Treasury Bonds, which would could cut off global credit flows! Stock prices could fall. It could get way more expensive to get a home loan. The dollar could take a nosedive. This would totally blow our already slow economic recovery, and not in a hot way, either. I mean, that's what I heard, anyway. I'm probably wrong. Sorry. Am I talking too much?

  • Runaway Spending


    MARIO ANZUONI/Reuters/Corbis

    Yeah, sorry about your grandma and everything. But you know what? We shouldn't have a deficit anyway. All debt is bad! What are we doing, spending more money than we take in?

  • Government Bonds, Duh


    FRED PROUSER/Reuters/Corbi

    Um, I thought that's why we sell government bonds? To make up for that deficit? And anyway, some economists disagree that all debt is bad. There are shades of grey, you know.

  • Go Platinum, Baby


    Chris Pizzello/ /AP/Corbis

    Yeah, okay, thanks for that, Paul Krugman. Anyway, we should just issue platinum coins, or Obama could declare the debt ceiling unconsitutional under the 14th amendment, or something like that.

  • We've Done It Before & We Can Do It Again


    JONATHAN ALCORN/Reuters/Corbis

    Oh wow. I'm, like, suddenly a lot less turned on by you. This has never happened before, ever. But you know what has happened before? The U.S. has raised the debt ceiling at least 90 times. This time around we only need to raise it by $1.1 trillion, from $16.7 trillion to $17.8 trillion. What's the big deal?

  • Laters, Baby


    Kurt Krieger/Corbis

    What's the big deal? Welcome to our government. Now get into the bedroom. I'll give you something to panic over.

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