Thirty-two years ago today, US national debt passed $1 trillion for the first time. Today it stands at $17 trillion and the increase shows no sign of abating.
In 1981, US president Ronald Reagan swore his oath of office having spent the preceding campaign attacking deficit spending. As he sat down in the Oval Office, the US national debt had reached the lowest point since 1931: 32.5%. Today is stands at 71.4%.
For reference, the deficit is the annual difference between government income and spending. If income exceeds spending, the government is in surplus. If spending exceeds income, the government is in deficit. The national debt is the accumulation of all those annual deficits and surpluses.
The main cause of the national debt increase was Reagan’s massive increase in cold war defence spending and tax cuts. The sums simply didn’t add up as government income fell and spending rose, leading to successive annual deficits.
George Bush Sr continued with the high spending, low tax regime and while the deficit fell briefly under Bill Clinton, it soared again under George W Bush, exploding in the mess of the credit crash. The debt continues to grow under Barack Obama.
To put this into context, the UK national debt stood at 44.4% of GDP in 1981 and now stands at 75.2%, with 23 of those percentage points added since 2010 (it stood at 52% in 2010).
The debtor nations of the developed world are deeply in hock to the creditor developing world. As the OECD puts it, “Gross general government debt as a share of GDP for the OECD area has been gradually on the rise since the 1970s, reaching a record level of nearly 100% in 2010. The rapid increase in debt in past three years reflects mainly crisis related high budget deficits. Debt-to-GDP ratios in 2010 varied considerably among OECD countries, ranging from 12% in Estonia to 200% in Japan.”
Like our Facebook Page
Emerging Research In Seagrass Restoration: What Does The Future Hold?
Sustainable Bites: How To Make Your Diet Eco-Friendly
Coffee Farms & Cloud Forests: Colombia’s New Eco Initiatives
Electric Cars: Are They Worth The Switch?
Maximizing the Efficiency of Deliveries: Strategies for Sustainable Businesses
The Rise of Sustainable Cloud Computing
Navigating Towards A Greener Future: Sustainable Practices In Maritime
5 Reasons That Diamonds Can Be Excellent Green Investments
Why Should We Invest in Eco-Friendly Homes?
Eco- Friendly Homes Integrating Environmental Consciousness into Modern Real Estate
Can Eco-Friendly Businesses Embrace VPNs to Bolster Cybersecurity?
The Future of Sustainability In The Logistics Industry
Fun Activities That Will Help Kids Appreciate Nature More
Doubt No More: Electric Vehicle Charging Dynamic Load Balancing Is The Answer
Eight Different Eco-Friendly Developments in the Food Industry
UK Lags EU in Installing Heat Pumps to Slow Climate Change
5 Key Areas to Look at When It Comes to Business Sustainability
Addressing Leadership Challenges in Green Entrepreneurship
Holding Eco-Friendly Coins is Greener and More Profitable
Eco-Friendly Airlines Use Weather Models to Make Safer Flights
- Features2 months ago
What is the Eco-Friendliest Option to Wash Your Dishes?
- Environment7 months ago
6 Home Improvements You Can Make to Help the Environment
- Environment11 months ago
How to Ensure Your Home’s Eco-Friendly During Construction?
- Business10 months ago
The Pulp & Paper Industry is Reaching its Sustainability Goals