Ben Franklin's "Way to Wealth" Essay

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“The borrower is a slave to the lender, and the debtor to the creditor, disdain the chain, preserve your freedom; and maintain your independency: be industrious and free; be frugal and free” (Benjamin Franklin Pg. 462). This statement from Poor Richard derives from the text of “The Way to Wealth,” and it gives us an insight on Benjamin Franklin’s thought that debt is the chains that bind us to poverty. Although debt today seems to be a social norm, and it is the American way to pay for something with money we don’t have, Franklin tells us in “The Way to Wealth” that this way of thinking is harmful to our existence as Americans, as well to our country. To start off financial studies have shown, “Overall, consumer debt in America has increased by a whopping 1700% since 1971” (Michael, This large increase, in spending money we don’t have has to do with the creation of credit cards and inability to be content with what we have. The frivolous spending has become the American way, because if we don’t have the money that’s ok, just charge it to the credit card. The Federal Reserve calculated that, “Americans are carrying a grand total of $798 billion credit card debt” (Michael, The use of credit cards has become a sickness in America, which has spiraled a majority of the population into mound of debt. Franklin tells us “The borrower is a slave to the lender, and the debtor to the creditor…” (Benjamin Franklin 462). He describes to us the problems that come with being in debt to our banks, by comparing debt to the chains of slavery and the master is the bank. When one is in debt to a creditor today, we are obligated to pay the debt off, plus its interest in a certain time period; otherwise they have the ability to get their money back by repossession. Furthermore, today it is also very common for kids just getting out of high school to

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