Saturday, January 15, 2011

U.S. National Debt

Most Americans simply do not know what the facts are about our economy. For anyone who is interested in facts and is willing to look at actual numbers, here are the National Debt figures provided by the U.S. Treasury Department.

1/14/11 - $14.01 trillion (current as of this post)
1/20/09 - $10.63 trillion (President Obama Inaugurated)
1/20/08 - $9.19 trillion (1 year before President Obama took office)
9/30/10 - $13.56 trillion
9/30/09 - $11.91 trillion
9/30/08 - $10.02 trillion
9/30/07 - $9.00 trillion
9/30/06 - $8.51 trillion
9/30/05 - $7.93 trillion
9/30/04 - $7.38 trillion
9/30/03 - $6.78 trillion
9/30/02 - $6.23 trillion
9/28/01 - $5.81 trillion
9/28/00 - $5.67 trillion
9/30/92 - $4.06 trillion

Look it up for yourself at the U.S. Treasury Dept.


Under Clinton, the National Debt rose from $4.19 trillion to $5.74 trillion. Thus, it rose by a total of $1.55 trillion. This represents a 37% increase over Clinton's eight years in office [($5.74 - $4.19)/$4.19]. Keep in mind that by the end of Clinton's term we were making payments on the Debt and working to reduce the figure, and we had an annual budget SURPLUS of almost $240 billion.

Under Bush, the National Debt rose from $5.74 trillion to $10.63 trillion, for a total of $4.89 trillion. This represents a 85% increase over his term in office [($10.63 - $5.74)/$5.74]. Making matters worse, he spent hundreds of billions at the end of his term bailing out AIG, GM, Chrysler, Freddie Mac, the big banks, etc., and he left behind his tax cuts, an unfunded Medicare Part D, and the ongoing wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. He left behind an annual budget DEFICIT of $1.2 trillion.

During Bush's final year, the national debt increased 16%. The end of President Bush's term ended with enormous structural deficits and the Great Recession that had to be dealt with.

Under Obama, the Debt has increased from $10.63 trillion to $14.01 trillion ($3.38 trillion) over his first two years. This represents an 32% increase. A true test of his presidency will be whether he can slow the rate of increase and get the explosion in Debt that he inherited back under control.

There is a need to cut spending and increase taxes - the structural deficits that are in place are far too great to deal with on the revenue or spending side alone.

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