The Deficit? Chump Change, A Brief History of the National Debt

Funny thing, if one runs a deficit each year, for decades, those deficits turn into a debt mountain. This country has been building such a volcano for a very long time. We better hope it doesn’t erupt.

(From the Washington Times)

So began the long, steep ascent to today’s $16.5 trillion national debt (on which the Treasury pays $19,608.81 in interest every two seconds). The national debt now exceeds 100 percent of GDP and is growing by roughly $3 billion a day. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projects a $20 trillion debt 10 years from now.

George Washington warned about the dangers of debt in his Farewell Address (1796), admonishing “the people of the United States to avoid the accumulation of debt.” Forty years later (1835) was the only debt-free year in America’s history. By the time President Clinton gave his final State of the Union address on Jan. 27, 2000, America’s national debt was $5.5 trillion.

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