Too Much Debt
The United States federal government has accumulated debt of more than $17 trillion, and that debt is expected to grow significantly in coming years. This burden is an extremely serious drag on our economy. Borrowing more and more money would threaten the livelihoods of Americans, as well as our standing with the rest of the world. It is important we act now, so we can set our nation on a new course.
It’s actually very simple to see how we’ve gotten to this point. The federal government has to borrow money when the revenue it collects is not enough to cover the amount it spends. This is our budget deficit. The government’s current largest expenditures are defense, health care and Social Security.
Gross Domestic Product, or GDP, is the market value of all of the goods and services produced in our country. At one point, our revenues from taxes were set at 20 percent of the GDP, and our expenditures were at 21 percent. Then Republicans pushed taxes from 20 down to 16 percent of the GDP, while Democrats raised government spending to 25 percent.
A system nearly in balance has been wrecked by both parties. Reforming our taxation system and reducing the costs of those programs are critical to creating a deficit-free budget.
Like with a credit card, carrying a balance on loans is not free. Our government now spends about $200 billion every year just on interest payments, and we get nothing for it. Half of this money goes overseas to foreign countries that own our debt. These are the same countries who are our economic competitors. In order to keep this money flowing, we must answer to our creditors, as they control our finances.
This is no way to run a country. Compromise must be found, revenue must go up, and spending must go down. Most importantly, the United States must find a way to sustain itself again, because living on foreign debt may very well be the greatest threat to American sovereignty today.