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US government debt passes $19,000,000,000,000


Pier 14, San Francisco Photo: Thomas Hawk/Flickr/Creative Commons

Pier 14, San Francisco — every person in this image owes $59,400 in federal government debt. Photo: Thomas Hawk/Flickr/Creative Commons

On June 2, 2016, the debt of the American federal government was $19.2 trillion ($19,229,279,536,522).

According to justfacts.com, that works out to over $59,400 for every person living in the US or $154,300 for every American household.

At some point, this debt must be paid and this means future taxpayers will be called to account either through significant reductions in services, higher taxes or probably both.

You can control your own destiny or do it Greek style when your debtors call the shots.

I love the video below because it explains how government debt simply passes on the responsibility for excessive spending to the next generation.

In order to pay down its $19 trillion debt, the US federal government must first get rid of its yearly deficit.

Deficits represent any shortfall between revenues and spending on a yearly basis. Debt is simply the total accumulated deficits.

Unfortunately, the US government is in no hurry to deal with its yearly shortfall, as its deficit in 2015 was $439 billion. Though it has been going down over the past eight years, it is expected to rise to $500 billion this year and steadily increase over the next several years.

Few governments are willing to take on their deficits because they don’t want to endure the flak they will face from special interest groups when they make the necessary spending cuts and/or increase taxes. So irresponsible politicians just keep spending and running yearly deficits because they know when the debt finally comes due, they will be long gone.

Despite political unwillingness to deal with the debt, Americans are becoming increasingly concerned. A 2011 NBC poll published in the Wall Street Journal found that 80% of Americans worry about the national debt and yearly deficits ranking their concern as either “quite a bit” or “a great deal.”

In a 2010 poll conducted by CNBC and the Associated Press, 85% of Americans believed government debt would hurt future generations and 56% believed it would cause an economic crisis. In that poll 59% of Americans said cutting government spending was the preferred method of solving the debt crisis while 30% chose higher taxes as the way to deal with it.

Charisma News recently reported on the advice Billy Graham gave a person who had written him because her family had racked up massive amounts of credit card debt. Though Graham was responding on a personal level, his advice holds true nationally.

Thank you for your warning, and I hope many will heed it—because you’re right: debt can be like a millstone around your neck. No wonder the Bible warns us against excessive debt, and tells us to “Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another” (Romans 13:8).

But debt is often a sign of a deeper problem—and that is our desire for the things that money can buy. The Bible has a word for this: greed. That’s not a very pretty word, and we even may react against labeling ourselves as greedy. But in reality isn’t that what we really are, when we desire things we can’t afford or spend money on pleasures that won’t last? The Bible warns, “The greedy bring ruin to their households” (Proverbs 15:27).

What should you do? First, turn to Jesus Christ and make Him—not things or money—your priority in life. When Christ is first, our desire for things or pleasures or impressing others begins to fade. Open your heart and life to Him today.

Then ask God to help you deal with your debts in a practical way. Get a realistic budget, and stick to it. Devise a plan to pay back your debts, and if necessary cut up your credit cards or lock them away. Then set a date for paying off your debts, and every payday set aside what you’ll need to reach it.

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