It’s A Numbers Game – And We All Lose! US Debt Per Person
Chad Parks / 23 Jan 2013 / Personal Finance
315,218,264 – US Population
(The population of the US according to the US Population Clock from the US Census Bureau.)
If you are like me, all of the talks about the national deficit, our taxes, spending and spending cuts, the debt ceiling, and our fiscal health as a nation, means so little out of context.
The numbers are enormous and they are incomprehensible to me.
To help make sense of it, and to personalize it, I will take a look at the numbers that our media and government throw around when discussing our fiscal situation and translate these into what it means for each of us.
Let’s start with our national deficit. In an earlier blog, I talked about what our national budget looked like when thought of as a household budget. The national deficit was one component of that.
Let’s think about that for a minute.
My little family of four has been burdened with $205,297 of debt that we did not ask for. If that were a mortgage, the payments would be about $1100 a month, or $13,200 a year for the next 30 years. I can think of a lot of things my family could do with that $205,297 if we were given the option.
Doesn’t matter if you are rich or poor, this is the math. Of course, in our progressive tax system, the more you have, the more you pay, but that is a whole other discussion.
When you walk down the street, I want you to see a number over everybody’s head: $51,349. That is how much of a debt burden has been put on each of us, and we let it happen.
How can we possibly expect every man, woman, and child in the US to come up with and pay off $51,349 when the average household income in this country, pre-tax, is $44,000 a year. Rich nation indeed.
So, when you hear talk about screwing our future generations, this is what it means.
Challenging times. Is it any wonder why we are facing a looming retirement crisis when so many workers do not even have access to workplace savings, and no leadership when it comes to personal and fiscal responsibility?
What do you think about this? Did you know this is much of the national debt is on you? Do you have other examples we need to talk about?