Since Halloween is approaching, I thought I’d give myself a good scare. I decided to take a look at the U.S. National Debt Clock. As of the time of this writing (Thursday evening), the national debt of the United States is…hold on to your hats, folks…
Yikes. According to the Debt Clock website, that works out to about $38,730.25 per person. In addition, the national debt continues to increase by an average of $3.79 billion (yes, that’s billion) per day. Scary stuff for sure.
We can try to point fingers as to who is responsible, but the fact is that politicians on both sides of the aisle like to spend more than this country earns, which I think is highly unfortunate.
I’ll admit that I get a little depressed when thinking about the mess my children will have to mop up. And I start to question whether a country with so much debt can sustain itself for long. Yes, we are a super-power. But for how long?
Yesterday the big news was that the GDP (gross domestic product) grew 3.5% in the third quarter. That’s good news today, but what about the bigger picture? That national debt is growing much faster than the GDP.
If I, as an individual, were to continue to spend more than I earned, eventually I would reach a point where bankruptcy is inevitable. If I racked up the credit card debt and refused to change my spendthrift habits, there would be no recovery for me.
Is it the same with the national debt? My concern is that politicians on both sides of the aisle are so wrapped up in the four year election cycle, that they don’t think beyond the next four years.
We’ve reached a point where everything is so political, so heated, that politicians will do anything, anything to gain the votes of the people. There’s no hope for long term change, because politicians aren’t interested in long term change. They’re interested in saving their jobs.
This is, of course, my opinion, and I’m sure that there are some great representatives in Washington who are truly concerned about the welfare of the people. But for the most part, it doesn’t feel that way to me.
What are the answers? I don’t know. I’m not hopeful for our country’s future. At the same time, I know that God is in control, and I don’t need to worry about tomorrow. I’m concerned, but not panicked. But the sociology major in me likes to ponder these things, so I’m pondering away.
I’m interested in what you think, too. Is the debt troublesome? Can we get out from under it? Is there any hope for change, given the animosity between the parties in Washington? What’s the solution?
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I'm just an average mom, trying to live a frugal life and get out of debt. I write about things that have (and haven't) worked to improve my family's financial situation. What works for me may or may not work for you, and you should always consult a financial advisor before making important financial decisions.
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