The Bush Debt

The Fiscal Year 2007 Financial Report of the United States Government was released on 17 December 2007 and accompanying the report was a letter in summery prepared by the Comptroller General of the United States, Mr. David Walker, in which he highlights the following:

the federal government’s fiscal exposures totaled approximately $53 trillion as of September 30, 2007, up more than $2 trillion from September 30, 2006, and an increase of more than $32 trillion from about $20 trillion as of September 30, 2000. This translates into a current burden of about $175,000 per American or approximately $455,000 per American household.

Later that day Mr. Walker told the National Press Club (“Some Progress on U.S. Government’s Financial Statements But Significant Problems Remain,”, 17 December 2007),

If the federal government was a private corporation and the same report came out this morning, our stock would be dropping and there would be talk about whether the company’s management and directors needed a major shake-up.

So, just in case you missed that, the total debt of the United States, all that had been racked up through the years of Great Society, guns and butter, stagflation, the Reagan arms buildup and the corrections of the Bush, Sr. and Clinton years was $20 trillion. Since that time President Bush has managed to pile a whopping $32 trillion on top of that. In a scant seven years he has managed to increase the debt of the United States by 160 percent. That’s nearly a half-a-million dollars per household.

The right lauds the Bush tax cut, but it’s all smoke and mirrors. There has been no Bush tax cut. Deficits are future taxes. There has merely been the Bush tax deferral. George W. Bush looks good at the expense of one of his successors having to play the adult. “[T]alk about whether the company’s management and directors needed a major shake-up,” indeed. And yet, still one more year of the Bush administration with nothing to be done.