Mood: vegas lucky
Topic: "Debits on the Left?" (2)
Frodo, who never apologizes for speaking his mind, apologized for rounding off figures when he spoke about the "National Debt." "The numbers are astronomical, " he said, "and it is like offering a $25 Million Dollar reward for the capture of Osama bin Laden. The powers that be might be better off to simply offer a reward of $100,000 because that is a number that is on the mental register. So please pardon Frodo for simply rounding in order to make a point comprehensible."
"When Ronald Reagan became President of the United States, the cumulative budget deficit of the US of A was approximately one-quarter of a trillion dollars," said Frodo. "When he left office eight years later, that same figure had risen to one trillion dollars."
"Four years later," he added, "when George H. W. Bush was voted out-of-office, the cumulative figure had risen to four trillion dollars. Those numbers, along the way, convinced him that his pledge of 'No New Taxes' was an impossibility, and cost him his re-election."
"After eight years of a Clinton Presidency," our historical economist-in-residence proffered, "the growth of the deficit was reduced to the point that the cumulative figure left for George W. Bush when he took office was almost exactly 5 trillion dollars. Today, the total deficit sits somewhere beyond 6 trillion dollars."
"The issue, for all the world, is that this deficit is being funded from two primary sources, and that is the investment by foreign governments in the full faith and integrity of the US of A, and the 'anticipated' growth in revenue from future generations of American taxpayers," Frodo inhaled as he departed from this background data into his major point of discussion. "The continued growth in the deficit, because it is growing so fast, will intersect with the total wealth of all the citizens and institutions of the US of A when it reaches $46 trillion."
Frodo looked out over the audience, some of whom were still awake, and he said, "My dear friends, that confluence will occur before the year 2040. It means that we will have reached a point at which the US of A will have nothing more against which it could pledge its full faith and integrity." The audience, even those groggily wondering who had won the Jets game, breathed openly. Everyone had mentally calculated that within one generation, given the facts as they now exist, the US of A would be bankrupt. The prediction, made so long ago by Soviet Premier Nikita Krushchev, that the US of A would by 'buried' by its' enemies now exists within the reality of a single life-time.
As several hands raised, Frodo dismissed them with a single cautionary reference. "My friends," he said, "these words are not mine, they are the words of the Chairman of the GAO (nee Government Accounting Office, now Government Accountability Office), the highest ranking accountant in our Nation, and a non-partisan."
When Frodo walked out into the night air, he contemplated what life would be like in this land at that time, and if he were, indeed, the only one who will not be here, but who still gives a damn. Frodo decided that it was time to again cross over the borders and to talk with people outside his native land.