U.S. National Debt
Will it ever stop rising?
What is the National Debt?
The national debt is the amount of money the United States owes to numerous countries due to borrowing money, with China being one of the biggest creditors. The national debt is the total amount of debt the United States has accumulated since it became a country. Due to the United States borrowing more than it has paid off its debt, interest has ballooned the national debt to over $19,000,000,000,000. Many presidents of the United States have taken the responsibility to attempt to get the national debt decreased as much as possible. Some presidents tried new methods to decrease spending while others added new programs and benefits that just made the hole deeper. Because some presidents are more incompetent than others, it is wise for U.S. citizens to participate in elections to vote for candidates who are serious about helping the national politically and economically.
Starve the beast!
The starve the beast theory was a method used to attempt to stop government spending in hopes that the national debt will stop increasing dramatically. The theory was that if the government cut taxes, there will not be enough money to spend on programs since taxes help with government spending. However, this did not stop the government from spending because they could simply borrow money and spend more while increasing the national debt faster. Throughout the bush administration, president bush spent a lot of money on the national defense. An estimated 900 billion dollars was also spent in the war on terror in Iraq and Afghanistan between 2001 and 2009. www.governmentisgood.com is a great source because it explains the intentions behind the starve the beast theory and explains in great detail how it is supposed to limit government spending. Since it was not successful, the website even explains why this concept was a failure and only helped increase the national debt even more. An article at www.economist.com is also a good source that informs the readers that the war on terror put a huge dent in the national debt, as well as what the government is spending money on, and even talks about budget trends since 1947.
Tax bill of 2001
The tax bill of 2001 was passed in 2001, which reduced income tax rates. Many supporters of the tax cut claim that the tax cut is necessary and will help the economy grow and avoid a possible recession. However, the tax cut would do little to help the economy in the short run because its tax cuts are backloaded. Between 2001 and 2011, only 0.5 percent of the cost of the legislation would occur in 2001, and less than 5 percent in 2003. Backloading in inconsistent with spurring the economy in the short run. The tax cuts were not very successful in boosting families' spending power immediately, so there was hardly any effect in the first few months. Although there was hardly any effect in the beginning of the tax cuts, it eventually benefitted citizens. For example, child tax credit was doubled from $500 to $1000, the tax penalty on married couples was reduced, and fully repealed the tax on estates. An article on http://www.cbpp.org/ is a source that greatly explains some disadvantages to the tax bill of 2001, and does a great job explaining why the tax cut isn't very beneficial in the short run. The source even represents the other side of the argument, providing information on why the tax cut can be useful in the long run. Another source at http://edition.cnn.com/ is very invaluable for going into depth of the benefits for people in the long run. The source provides a tax rebate schedule and also provides immediate impact benefits.
Medicare part D
Health benefits are adored by U.S. citizens, so when Medicare part D was passed, adding prescriptions to medicare, citizens received many benefits. Anyone with medicare is entitled to upgrade to part D, regardless of their income. However, single people with an annual income of $85,000 or married couples with an income of $170,000, will have to pay surcharges on part D. It is beneficial for people who do not take prescriptions to upgrade early in the case of an emergency. Since most of the voters were 55 years and older, part D is generally beneficial for the elderly. A policy known as pay-go was even offered, which meant that if you could afford it, you would get it, and if you couldn't, you wouldn't get it. Unfortunately, this policy expired, however, medicare part D is still available for people who take the advantage of signing up early. Information on Medicare part D on aarp.org is a great source that greatly explains what Medicare part D is, lists those who are eligible, and even explains who will have to pay surcharges on it. An article on ehow.com is a great source that lists the disadvantages to Medicare part D, lists the drugs that are excluded, and talks about the coverage gap as well.