Explaining Our Debt Problem

September 8, 2011
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Recently, Standard & Poor’s downgraded the United States because of our budget problems. But the figures are awfully hard to comprehend:

  • U.S. Tax revenue: $2,170,000,000,000
  • Federal budget: $3,820,000,000,000
  • New debt: $1,650,000,000,000
  • National debt: $14,271,000,000,000
  • Recent budget cut: $38,500,000,000

To make it easier, let’s remove 8 zeros and pretend it’s a household budget:

Recently, Standard & Poor’s downgraded the United States because of our budget problems. But the figures are awfully hard to comprehend:

  • U.S. Tax revenue: $2,170,000,000,000
  • Federal budget: $3,820,000,000,000
  • New debt: $1,650,000,000,000
  • National debt: $14,271,000,000,000
  • Recent budget cut: $38,500,000,000

To make it easier, let’s remove 8 zeros and pretend it’s a household budget:

  • Annual family income: $21,700
  • Money the family spent: $38,200
  • New debt added onto the credit card: $16,500
  • Outstanding balance on the credit card: $142,710
  • Total budget cuts: $385

This is courtesy of the Heartland Institute.