Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Understanding the size of the U.S. National Debt

The national debt is at its current legal limit (the "debt ceiling") of $14.3 trillion dollars. Big number. Incomprehensible number. Lots of zeros...  $14,300,000,000,000.

Let me put it in perspective that we you can relate to.

There are approximately 80 million single family homes in the U.S. The average value is $170,000. Multiplying, that comes to $13.6 Trillion dollars.

Think about this for just a minute. The Uniited States government, with our alleged consent, has deemed it appropriate to borrow money "on our behalf" equal to the entire value of the single family housing stock in the United States!

So, to get an idea of the magniture of this borrowing, if you were to fly a plane from San Diego (California) to Boston (Massachusetts), looking out your window at house after house after house, know that the value of each and every home, large and small, new and old, added together and all sold (to whom?) would not pay for the national debt that has been accumulated by our government.

This is staggering, and it would be criminal for anyone else to do this except the elected government.

And for those of you who spend 40 years paying off your home mortgage, it will take the same amount of time, 40 years, for most Americans to pay off the National Debt.

Or you could have purchased a second home, but that may not be possible, and for the people who can barely afford one home, that will be out of reach, due to either increased taxes or sufficient inflation to wash away the debt.

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