The U.S. debt remains our darkest cloud

Thoughts from Behind the Pressline

In the next month as the election nears we’ll continue to hear a great deal about the U.S. debt now over $16 trillion and climbing. While the nation faces many issues nothing is more serious to our long term stability as a sovereign nation than the massive debt we’ve accumulated over the past decade.

You may have heard some of these analogies before but getting a true understanding of the sheer size and scope of this debt will, I hope, cause us each to recognize why this issue must be addressed and why we absolutely must begin reversing the spending habits of this nation. If you spent one million dollars a day since the day Jesus was born, 2,012 years ago you would not have spent one trillion dollars but, instead, only about $750 billion dollars. If that’s not personal enough for you, consider this, based on the current U.S. population, every U.S. citizen —man, woman and child — now owes just under $50,000 each to pay for the debt we’ve racked up over the past few years.

In 2011 the World Bank estimated that the Gross World Product, that is the value of the products world-wide would be valued at approximately $80.7 trillion dollars. In the United States the Gross National Product is valued at approximately $15.2 trillion dollars. Our debt now exceeds the total one year production of the entire country. The U.S. government is the world’s biggest client, spending more money — our money — than any other entity in the world. The U.S. government spends one million dollars every eight second and currently borrows approximately 40 perceny of the money it spends.

In the last year alone our debt rose by $1.2 trillion. In comparison the world’s tenth largest economy is our neighbor to the north, Canada. Their economy is $1.7 trillion. Our neighbor to the south, Mexico, the fourteenth largest economy, is just slightly smaller then our 2011 debt. In fact our debt has now grown so large that there isn’t enough cash in the world to cover the debt so the federal government has become the major purchaser of the debt financing it by printing more than $1.6 trillion.

Dan Alexander is publisher and CEO of Denton Publications. He may be reached at dan@denpubs.com.

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