Feature

13 trillion reasons to cut the deficit

To make $13 trillion in federal debt less of an abstraction, consider that if you earned a dollar every second, it would take you 416,000 years to pay off, said Michael Tanner in the New York Post.

Michael Tanner
New York Post

It’s a number that’s so big, it’s “almost impossible to process,” said Michael Tanner. This week, the federal debt officially passed the $13 trillion mark. To make this “outlandish debt” less of an abstraction, consider that if you earned a dollar every second, it would take you 416,000 years to pay it off. And that’s not the half of it: The $13 trillion figure vastly understates the hole we’re digging for our children and grandchildren, since it doesn’t include $15.8 trillion in unfunded liabilities for Social Security and at least a $50 trillion shortfall for Medicare.

“There’s no way to tax our way out of this mess”: Just keeping up with current spending would require raising the tax rate on the rich to 88 percent and on the middle class to 63 percent. No sane person believes “the economy can survive that kind of taxation.” That means Washington has to do what Democrats and Republicans alike have been unable to do for years: Stop the runaway spending. Unless we want to follow Greece down the road to insolvency, “someone is going to have to have the courage to say ‘No.’”

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