January 18, 2013 1:07:44 PM
U.S. debt in understandable terms
I was never a whiz kid at math and numbers so I can understand why folks may be confused with some of the numbers being bandied about in conjunction with the fiscal cliff debate (or lack thereof). A friend recently sent me an e-mail that simplified the issue for me. He compared the U. S. Government budget to a U.S. household budget by removing eight (8) zeros from the U. S. Government numbers. See what you think.
* Annual family income: $21,700
* Money the family spent: $38,200
* New debt on the credit card: $16,500
*Outstanding balance on the credit card: $142,710
*Total budget cuts so far: $38.50
Got it? OK now lets move on to lesson #2: Understanding the Debt Ceiling. Pretend you come home one day and discover there has been a sewer back up in your neighborhood. Your house has sewage all the way up to the ceilings. What would you do next, raise the ceilings or remove the sewage?
Now, I think you and I can understand our country's fiscal problems a little better. And if we can understand, then why can't our elected officials understand and fix the problem?
Martin Pomphrey, Jr. M.D.
1. Possumhaw: Corncobs, critters and Catalpa Creek LOCAL COLUMNS
2. Our View: Council should interview school board candidates in public DISPATCH EDITORIALS
3. Tim Kalich: Open government is good government NATIONAL COLUMNS
4. Voice of the people: Anne Freeze LETTERS TO THE EDITOR (VOICE@CDISPATCH.COM)
5. Voice of the people: Dianne Rueff LETTERS TO THE EDITOR (VOICE@CDISPATCH.COM)