A good friend turned me onto this six minute video. Please take the time to watch it. It contains an important message, displayed in a manner that everyone can easily understand.
As an engineer, someone once asked me why I love math and numbers so much. I was surprised. I didn’t think that I did. But, I came to realize that compared to most people, I do like math and graphs and such things better than normal people.
Not to worry. This is displayed quite well for even the “graph – a – phobic.” In case you just can’t bring yourself to click the play button, the punchline is that, the top 1% of the wealthy in America own a staggering amount of America’s wealth, and 50% of the stocks and investments. To the author of the video, and to me, that seems like a very unstable situation.
A democracy is a long way from perfect, but has the idea is that everyone’s vote is counted. When we have virtual kings and a massive majority of the people are very poor, bad things happen. We know that from dozens of historical examples.
The video says it so much better than I do, please watch the video.
There are good solutions to this problem, without using the swear word, “socialism”. Warren Buffett thinks that the very rich, and he’s often the very richest person on the planet, should pay more taxes.
President Reagan talked us into drastically reducing the tax on those unbelievably, unimaginably rich people. When we closed that source of income of money to operate the government, the debt was 32.5% of the gross domestic product. And I remember in his campaign ads, that he thought that the debt at that time was outrageous. Now it is 102%. Does this sound like a good idea? Not to me.
Actually, I thought he meant that it was outrageously large. Apparently he meant that it was outrageously small.
Here is where I got that information. There are other sources.
There are many ways to be fooled with numbers, either intentionally or accidentally. If you look at the number of dollars in the debt at that time, versus the number of dollars in the debt today, you will be quite justifiably terrified. But, the per capita debt or the debt as a percentage of gross domestic product, is probably more representative. You decide.
Inflation, is one big variable that is hard for most of us to wrap our minds around, and especially hard to find useful data. Inflation is a way the government’s fund themselves by taking money out of your pocket. Even if you bury $100 bill in a mason jar in the backyard, inflation can remove the value of that bill, magically, without digging up the jar. I think most people have no idea how that works are they would get mad.
I have probably lost everybody by this stage, so I will close with, what I hope is a very simple idea.
The government needs money to pay the bills that we all agree need to be paid. There are other bills that most of us disagree on in one direction or the other. But, to run up big, unpaid bills that will require that our children’s children pay them off, or will require that the government collapse in order to remove those debts, seems really stupid.
Rational people only borrow money for a short-term need. Our government has not been rational since 1967. And it was no great shakes before that.
Clearly our system is seriously broken. I’m sure that the answers extremely complicated, but if we don’t start working on it, there is no hope at all.
And I predict that most of you think that the other political party, which everyone that is is the cause of it. Guess again folks. Every single one of us is the cause of it.
In this chart, the green countries are low debt: