National Debt Clock Is Ticking

Friday, 23 Apr 2010 11:43 AM

By Ralph Hostetter

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The National Debt Clock keeps ticking, even as we sleep. Waking up Wednesday morning, April 21, America found the clock had registered an increase in debt during the night of 2.27 billion dollars in 12 hours.

It takes only 59 seconds to tick away a million dollars.

The national debt as of midday April 22 was $41,628 per citizen or $117,071 per taxpayer.

The federal budget deficit was $1,424,719,860,000 ($1.4 trillion) on a national budget of $3,551,309,116,000 ($3.5 trillion) representing a shortfall of some 40 percent.

Spending is out of control.

This should come as no surprise to the American electorate. It must take full responsibility for creating today's disastrous budget problems.

Electing a "community organizer" to be CEO of the world's largest corporation certainly raised enough questions prior to the presidential election of 2008. Had these questions been answered honestly, the United States may have been saved from this fiscal dilemma.

What's worse is the fact that trillion-dollar deficits are predicted for the foreseeable future.

The United States at present is financing its more than trillion-dollar-a-year debt by issuing IOUs. More to the point, it is paying off its credit card obligations, so to speak, with another credit card.

The government estimates, with the national debt now topping 12 trillion dollars, that servicing the debt will exceed $700 billion a year by 2019, up from $202 billion this year. The figure is expected to go much higher.

It is estimated that an additional $500 billion a year in interest expense would exceed the combined budgets this year of education, energy, homeland security, and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Some economists doubt the accuracy of this forecast, and one is predicting debt servicing will be much higher.

The only bright spot in the forecast is the remarkably low interest rate charged by those who are buying America's debt.

At present the United States has a AAA bond rating and is able to borrow from other nations in the world, China in particular, at an interest rate of 0.016 percent (sixteen hundredths of one percent).

The United States at the present time is borrowing (through foreign nations' purchasing of U.S. Treasury bills, T-bonds and notes) from more than 50 other nations in the world.

Those lending more than $100 billion each are China ($889 billion), Japan ($765 billion), oil exporters ($218 billion), United Kingdom ($206 billion), Hong Kong ($147 billion), Caribbean banking centers ($144 billion), Russia ($124 billion), and Taiwan ($119 billion).

Twenty-six other countries are lending more than one billion dollars each.

The financial failure of other nations in the world, namely Spain and Greece, are raising international concerns with respect to America's large deficits and increasing debt and what effect it may have on the future value of the U.S. dollar.

The U.S. dollar is and has been the leading currency of the world by which all other currencies are measured.

Leading economists in the nation are warning that America cannot sustain such deficits and burdensome national debt and continue to survive.

Pressure has been building around the world to bring about a change that would replace the dollar as the world's global currency.

George Soros, notorious manipulator of world currencies, has been working for some time to replace the U.S. dollar with the Chinese yuan. Soros' reputation is well known as the man who broke the Bank of England.

However, the dollar continues to dominate global currency reserves, with 63.9 percent of those reserves held in dollars.

Removing the dollar as the world’s leading currency would have disastrous economic consequences for the United States.


E. Ralph Hostetter, a prominent businessman and agricultural publisher, also is a national and local award-winning columnist. He welcomes comments by email sent to eralphhostetter@yahoo.com.

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