Most people (about 97%) will spend everything they earn and not save a penny.
While all of my friends were buying boats, motorhomes, big screens and thousands
of other extras, many of us were putting small portions away. We knew that the
only way to survive is to have savings, 401-k's, and mutual funds. Little
by little saving was and is the only thing saving some of us as we are getting
older. The rest still have their extravagances but no savings. The reason
they are in debt is lack of self control.
RBB,No we won't sell our military, we give it away free (not
really free because it costs us a great deal of money) every time a republican
president takes office.
LA Mormon,If you are going to use the entire GDP, you have to either
put tax rates at 100% or you have to add all US debt. Last year the Feds took
in $ 2.78 in revenue. With $17 Trillion in debt, the government owes 6 times as
much as it brings in. Thus, your analogy should be a guy having an income of
$100,000 and owing $600,000 on his house. Of course this analogy does not work
as the homeowner can sell the house. What is the federal government going to
sell? Our military?.
One old man - facts are inconvenient, like the fact that Obama has had the five
largest deficits in US history. And your argument about the slowest rate of
debt increase - that is because Obama took the $800 Billion stimulus package of
Bush (which was supposed to be a 1 time thing) and made it a permanent part of
the budget. By the end of his term Obama will have amassed more debt than All
presidents before him COMBINED!
The comments about President Obama and the debt are way off base and just
ignorant. The United States of America has a AAA Bond rating. The nations annual
income is almost $17 Trillion in GDP. That means the US only has one dollar in
debt for every dollar of income it produces annually. To put it another way the
US is in very good financial shape. To put in terms of personal income the US
makes $100,000 a year and has only a $100,000 mortgage on the house. Most
Americans have far worse debt ratios. By the way the US has never missed a bond
payment in our history. Never not once. How many average Americans can say that?
The US should be spending more money to rebuild schools and our internet
infrastructure which are falling behind the rest of the world, but it seems
people are not smart enough to understand basic economics nowadays. Great
article. Most Americans are financial fools.
Chris B, the same was said about Ronald Reagan. The National Debt increased
7-fold under his tenure and was the cause of the much consternation in the
1980's. I remember those days well and the precedent he set of
unrestrained borrowing is a lasting legacy of that administration. The problem
in America today is that people are political party partisans. In reality, both
political parties are essentially the same. They both tax, they both spend,
they both have their welfare favorites, and they both are in the tank with
special interests and are beholden to large corporate donors. The only way
things will change in America is if Americans dump the political party line
mumbo jumbo and start becoming smart voters.
"Among all households where at least one person is employed full time, less
than a third have savings that equal one year’s income. More than half of
all working households — 57 percent — have less than $25,000 in
total savings, not including home equity."Hard to tell how much
of a problem that is without putting some context to the numbers. At first
glance this appears alarming, but if you broke it out into different age groups
it would be more telling. Is this supposed to be representative of people 10
years out from retirement (which would be extremely troubling)? Or just the
general population? Need more info.
It's hard to comprehend how anyone could possibly blame Obama for
increasing debt -- except that it's the easy thing to do. Much easier than
placing the blame where it really belongs with Congress and a string of
Republican presidents as far back as Reagan. The truth is that debt under Obama
has increased at a much lower rate than at any time in recent history except
under Clinton.But hey, facts are such inconvenient things.
Unless we want to look like India in the next 25 years we better shore up Social
Security and Medicare. Otherwise tomorrow's seniors will be competing with
other panhandlers out on our roads. Americans are bombarded to spend like
drunken consumers through advertising, by fammily and friends, and even past
Presidents (remember GW's famous plea after 9/11). Assuming debt is
encouraged in almost every facet of our society. I never bought into it but the
majority have. It's a reality and as a society we have to deal with it.
This is no surprise. With all the payday loan outfits, bankruptcy outfits, zero
down easy terms deals around, there is no shortage of ways the irresponsible can
get into trouble and then be preyed upon. And none of it is the
presidents' fault. People just make poor decisions, and more and more
expect them to be free of consequences. I just bought a trailer from a kid who
got sucked in by the lure of low payments for years longer than he'd want
the trailer. It cost him, but I didn't get the impression he learned
anything from it.
Government gets to print money to pay off debt, I don't.
There is nothing more comforting than having liquid savings, a paid for home and
money in the retirement fund. I think a lot of the savings dearth is a
reflection of the lack of preparedness in other areas of life, such as
spirituality, making amends, inventory, cleaning the proverbial spiritual house
etc. It's a package deal.
When we have a "leader" in Barack who has added almost as much to the
national debt as all past presidents combined its not a surprise many follow his
"example". Spending more isn't the answer Barack