U.S. National Debt at 15 Trillion $$, time to stop passing it on.
March 18th 2012 The Florida Patriot
According to information straight from various federal government websites on the as of the time I started writing this article our national debt is $15,576,975,635,236.37 or $49,858.47 for every man, woman and child in the United States. Having children of my own it greatly distresses me that my generation and the generations before mine are passing on this huge debt for them to pay. The United States has approximately 312,423,836 people right now so even spreading that debt among all of these people it still adds up to more than most people’s mortgages. The Problem is bi-partisan in that the National Debt has increased by an average of 4.02 billion per day since Sept 28th 2007. Could this be part of the reason that President Obama, the U.S. Senate and especially the U.S. Congress have such low approval ratings lately?
Where does the money go? From searching the Federal Governments budget website I found out that U.S. citizens donated 581,080.40 to help reduce our debt, I wonder if Warren Buffet was one of the people who made a contribution as he talks about raising his taxes a lot. As of 3/15/2012 10.8 trillion of this debt is “The Debt Held by the Public” which includes individuals, corporations, state or local governments among others and the scariest part you hear so much about “Foreign Governments” own a great deal of our debt. How did the greatest country in the world get to the point where we are being loan sharked by foreign countries?
Some folks blame President Bush so I fact checked this with the federal treasury website and on January 22nd 2001 the national debt was 01/22/2001 5,728,195,796,181.57 and on January 20th 2009 at the end of his term it was 10,626,877,048,913.08. Some folks blame President Obama so I looked at the figures and on January 20th 2009 as referenced the debt was 10,626,877,048,913.08 and as of March 15th 2012 it was 15,564,809,891,767.99. The more startling fact is that on January 20th 1993 the national debt was 4,188,092,107,183.60. Where did we start to go so wrong and what were the catalysts to this growing tsunami? Way back in 1945 at the end of World War II the debt stood at 258,682,187,409.93 so it seems we have carried some debt for a very long time.
Let’s take a look at what we are spending our hard earned tax dollars on. Taking a look at the year 2011 we have Social Security at 780 billion, Medicare at 497 Billion, Defense at 928 billion, Education at 140 billion, Welfare at 471 billion (including unemployment, housing, Social exclusion n.e.c.) and to be fair 44.1 billion of defense spending is foreign aid. Now for the really bad news, we spent 250 billion on just the interest on this debt and are projected to spend 571 billion on interest in 2015 if we do not make some serious changes in our use of the government credit card.
So how do we fix this debt that we have gotten ourselves into? Do we raise taxes, do we cut spending, do we cut Social Security and Medicare or all of the above. There is no easy fix to this problem and it will take many, many years to get out of this mess. The other questions raised are now that unemployment is finally going down and the stock market going up if we raise taxes and cut spending will we kill our gradual economic improvement? One of the main questions that seems simple is why are we giving out so much foreign aid when our country itself is in so much debt? Doesn’t charity start at home and why in the world would we be giving foreign aid to Pakistan still when they were hiding Osama Bin Laden? These staggering figures cannot be ignored as we have passed the buck for far too many years. As parents and grandparents the time to fix our deficit is finally upon us. It will take bi-partisan support and great leadership to do so, we as Americans must do our research on candidates, ignore the 30 second TV ads and Vote for great leaders in 2012.