First off, the US cannot print money, only US bonds. The Fed, the pubic or foreigners have to buy those bonds. When the Fed holds them, it issues credit in the form of new money (Federal reserve notes/IOUs). If the Fed doesn't buy them any more, and the world doesn't want them due to stupid US spending policy, the US will have to raise interest rates to make them more attractive.
Currently we are paying $415 bill on our current debt at 2.5%. If we raise our debt to $20 (currently $16.7) in the next 5 years and interest rates go to 10% (which they could very easily do and historically have done, historical average is 6%) we'd be paying $2 trillion/ year just in interest. And if no-ones buying our debt, even at 10%, we're doomed.
So, even if other countries are still willing to buy our debt at 10%, we're going another $1.3 trillion into debt the first year, $1.5 the next, 1.7 the next, 1.9 the next. 5 more years and we're now at $28 .5 trillion in debt at 10% we're paying 2.85 trillion in interest. GDP is no longer rising faster than interest payments so we are officially in a death spiral.
Constitutionally, we have no way of claiming bankruptcy, and when the government can no longer pay the benefits it promised their will be an uprising. An all out class war. You will see most of the buildings in New York and Chicago burn to the ground. Not because of terrorists, or nuclear weapons, but because the people who have grown to depend on entitlement programs will blame the "elite" for not paying enough in taxes to support them. The symbols of american wealth will be destroyed first, then the angry masses will turn their attention on Washington, DC. The DHS will kill millions of American citizens who have become mindless mob mentality brutes.
Once the riots and fire fights have ceased, and the atrocities of the US government have been well publicized throughout the world, the States will no longer recognize the power of the United States Government. Word will spread that by dissolving the US, the debt of the US will go away. Two or three new confederacies will form and the old debt will not be honored. The military may also split among the new confederacies, since without the old US they are no longer being paid and cannot afford to support themselves.
I hope we remember;
1) Everyone is responsible for themselves
2) Charity is best served locally
3) The government should not have the power to borrow more than 20% of GDP
4) The government should not have the power to tax more than 1/7th of your income.
Yes were going to go broke. We currently have a large majority of people receiving assistance and many others just squeaking by. The government has it out for the poor and elderly. Government just made budget cuts to the food stamps and social security programs making it harder for many Americans, and then put money into the irs to make we are good little servants and pay our insurance. I think we should have more say over what is going on in Congress. America isn't free anymore we are having all our choices made for us. They are working on a plan to tell low income who get food stamps what they should eat , you think that's ok what if your next ? What if people on disability are only allowed to buy certain items? What's next we cant take care of our own country and we support others and let ours fail and then we let more people in our country when we cant provide for the ones already here. We are heading towards disaster. What can we do reform the insurances for one, make it only mandatory to only have insurance for children under age 17, Stay out of peoples kitchens and let them eat what they want. Give the money back where its needed. Stop letting people in till we can knowingly provide for everyone. I believe the low income are strong and like a pyramid they carry this Country do many jobs most would never want to do and are taking for granted everyday. I wish the government could be put on a budget and made to live on assistance for a month. Let them see the reality.
We no longer have a bird in the bush. And we lost the one we had in our hand a long time ago. Put your money in silver and oil. These will be two of the best safe havens for the coming crunch. No I don't work for Kitco. Please god give us the grace to survive this using love and compassion, and good common sense in the future.
The day will come when the debts and entitlements cannot be paid, except with 'dollars' that are worth a mere fraction of their present value. In fact, we have already been on this course for more than a decade. So it will be a slow moving train wreck. At some point the dollar will have to be revalued, and we might have to go through a revolution as those stripped of their entitlements are likely to be 'fighting mad.' It's going to be a tumultuous time, made even worse if the citizenry have no faith in their leaders. Have you seen Congress' poll numbers lately?
We now have groups supporting illegals, they have more rights than we do. Everything for them is FREE. Not free to me or you mind you. With Obamacare my insurance will go up 30% minimum. My employees I cannot afford health insurance for so they will be dropped to 25 hours a week. My gas has doubled along with my commute. My daughters classroom is beyond capacity. We have no bus service we cannot afford to buy more buses so no service period. I heard Boston decided to give everyone FREE lunch because it was cost effective, there weren't enough that PAID. We aren't far behind, a teacher asked the class how many were free lunch/breakfast 85% raised their hands. He then asked who owned cellphones 100% raised their hands. See where this is going? Our police are overwhelmed, my son lost a friend last year he wasn't part of a gang. Put he was in a gang members way in PUBLIC RESTAURANT. If you don't think it can happen to you think again. I can't get a job because I can't speak Spanish. Our underage birth rate is threw the roof, least i mention each birth cost over $10 THOUSAND Dollars, that's without feeding them. Which brings me to this statement. HOW DARE WE SUGGEST YOU FEED YOUR OWN CHILDREN. HOW DARE YOU COME INTO OUR COUNTRY AND STEAL, LIE AND DRAIN EVERYTHING I'VE WORKED FOR MY WHOLE LIFE. Pull the mask off, Obama is a traitor, a horrific leader.
All debt in the US totals about 91 TRILLION dollars, the US govt (public debt) owes about 17 Trillion dollars. It must finance about 3.7 Trillion dollars next year alone. Its gross domestic product (gross income) is less than what it owes now. Technically I think the US is NOW bankrupt, however and unless there is a MAJOR economic overhaul at all levels, the bickering, non-cooperation, non action, and rule bending will drive it over the edge. The US MUST start paying MORE in taxes and stop wasting money supporting foreign governments, and start paying down its debt . The US is doing nothing but living on borrowed time, it is not bringing its largest debt drivers under control, and is counting on nothing but foreign investment to save the day. Maybe it can work, but a foreign investor wants to be paid back. Explain how this can happen when you are insolvent?
The US dollar once was the world's international exchange currency, now every year more countries are rejecting the dollar as their exchange standard, we do not export anything anymore except food... All Americans do is consume from the rest of the world, once the rest of the world no longer relies on our dollar or 1 export, no countries will feel the need to bail us out when we fail...
The ratio of GDP to debt is such that our only options are to either go bankrupt or go to war against China and win (not gonna happen.) America is the greatest country on Earth, but we have fallen into the same trap that so many others have fallen into- mindless binge spending.
Marxist "Progressives" are in control of the White House, Senate, Media, and Universities. Bankruptcy is inevitable and communism will be implemented over the long term. It will fail miserably (as it always does) as well as the American society as we knew it pre-bankruptcy. The best case scenario is it will take hundreds of years to return to a free market and heal the nation. Worst cast scenario is there will be murders, lawlessness, and a dictatorship overseeing a third-world nation for the foreseeable future.
The arrogance of our "leadership" and of the American people as a whole certainly will not help. Most do not want to admit the problem is as big as it is and those that do are, for the most part, unwilling to cut where cuts are needed. Entitlements are where most cutting needs to start but every politician learns early on in their career that cutting entitlements would be political suicide. There is no way to get out of the hole without sacrifices.
The US government won't allow themselves to go "bankrupt" per se. However, they will print more money which essentially makes the money owed on the debt worthless. We'll see massive inflation when the baby boomers retire because that is when the entitlements will go through the roof and that is when we will have to print more money. Unfortunately for the baby boomer retirees, their social security checks won't buy much.
There are a few options before America goes bankrupt. The most simple option is to print more money, of course that has very bad consequences but going bankrupt is a lot worse. The keyword here is "delaying" the inevitable and hope that a miracle happens before there is no money anymore to buy the paper for the money printer. So it will get worse before it gets a lot worse! No worries :)
Everyone points at the 5.59 external debt of the US without mentioning that foreign countries owe the US about 7.9 trillion USD. Should I mention the world owes to the US the automobile, the airplane, the computer, the Internet and on and on... Some countries even owe their very existence but that's another topic. It's all political game, US can not default.
They will inflate their way out of it. Whether they do it quickly and destroy the value of their dollar in the process or slowly and leave things more intact, there is no pressure or reason to pay off their debts tomorrow. They can take their time figuring things out, and continue to borrow more if need be. No one, not China, Japan or Brazil (it's 3 largest foreign lenders) have the military or geo political sway to force the states to pay up any time soon. They actually "only" owe China 1.1 Trillion. A third of their debt is owed to domestic sources, states, banks, citizens and companies. None of them have any reason to call in their debts if it would mean the collapse of the states.
So in conclusion, maybe in the distant future the US could default, but for the time being, and the foreseeable future, they don't HAVE to pay anyone back, so I doubt that they would do something as drastic as defaulting.
In this age of "too big to fail," nobody lives up to that label more than the US government. There will always be more fiscal maneuvering, another loan, or simply printing more money. On some level, it probably doesn't really matter how many irresponsible George W. Bush presidencies come along, or, for that matter, how many Barack Obama presidencies come afterwards and don't really do anything to fix the damage. Politicians will always find some way to wiggle out. So, no the US won't "go bankrupt" any time soon, but the standard of living of the citizens isn't likely to get any better.
It is true that America is many problems, which make people worry about the future of its economy. Most importantly two parties do not seem to be cooperating to make their country to become world-leading one. Other countries which were once less developed and not wealthier compared to America are rapidly changing based on the guidance to be wealthy made by America speedily under somewhat centralist control of the nation. However, America's education encouraging creativity and imagination will make the country not fail economically.
If the right elections are made (Ron paul). He stated that he won't run again, but if his son followes in his path of common sense then the US has some chance of salvation. If Ron Paul was elected for two terms than he would definitely bring this crumbling to the ground
We have a sovereign currency and the ability to print as much currency as we want. Contrary to popular belief, that currency is NOT the dollar. It is the US Bond. The US Bond is backed by the future taxes of the United States citizenry.
Dollars are IOUs that the banks produce when they hold assets. If you give $1000 in gold to the bank, the have the right to hold that gold and issue $1000 worth of IOUs, (Federal Reserve Notes, or US Dollars). When the US sells US Bonds to the Fed, the Fed then issues the face value of the bonds as credit to the US government. This is how the money printing press works. So as long as the Federal Reserve continues to purchase US Bonds, the US can pay any debt.
But what happens if the Federal Reserve refuses, and everyone else refuses to purchase US bonds? The constitution says only gold and silver shall be coined and issued as currency by the US Government so we cant just print money.
In fiscal 2013 we paid $415 billion in interest at 2.5%. If the interest rate went to the historical average of 6% we would be paying over $1 trillion per year in interest, and that's without increasing the debt. The debt has gone up 47% in the last 5 years. But at the same time, politicians say that they have cut $2.5 trillion out of the budget. Of course this is over the next 10 tens of spending, so about $250 billion per year. With the sequester reducing the rate of increased government spending, and the latest shutdown which simply laid off "non-essential" employees with pay, and no mandatory spending program touched, I can see very clearly that we will not really cut spending any time soon. We will continue to go at least $1 trillion further into debt each year for the next few decades. That being said, 3 years from now our debt will be $20 trillion, our interest payments will be $1.2 trillion, our revenue will be $3.0 trillion leaving $1.8 trillion to support $2 trillion in mandatory (entitlement) spending and $1.1 trillion in discretionary spending. We will still be able to pay our interest payments and nothing else when the debt reaches $50 trillion.
I believe that the Fed and other countries know that we are living on borrowed time. When interest rates go up to 6% and our debt is $20 trillion, our creditors will no longer buy our debt. The interest rates on bonds will skyrocket to 15% quickly then slowly to 20-25%. The US will have to raise taxes on everyone dramatically just to pay for the runaway interest, this will destroy the economy and perhaps put us in a death spiral toward riots, civil unrest, revolting, revolution?
Will the new founding fathers learn from our mistakes? Lets hope they write their constitution to limit the scope of government intrusion and borrowing authority.