The Magnitude of the Mess We're In
The next Treasury secretary will confront problems so daunting that even Alexander Hamilton would have trouble preserving the full faith and credit of the United States.
By George P. Shultz, Michael J. Boskin, John F. Cogan, Allan H. Meltzer and John B. TaylorSometimes a few facts tell important stories. The American economy now is full of facts that tell stories that you really don't want, but need, to hear.
Where are we now?
Did you know that annual spending by the federal government now exceeds the 2007 level by about $1 trillion? With a slow economy, revenues are little changed. The result is an unprecedented string of federal budget deficits, $1.4 trillion in 2009, $1.3 trillion in 2010, $1.3 trillion in 2011, and another $1.2 trillion on the way this year. The four-year increase in borrowing amounts to $55,000 per U.S. household.
Comment: It's too late and people know it.