Category: Z B: Debt

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The real story behind America’s new $20 trillion debt

Late yesterday afternoon the federal government of the United States announced that the national debt had finally breached the inevitable $20 trillion mark. This was a long time coming. It should have happened back in March, except that a new debt ceiling was put in place, freezing the national debt. For the last

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You stand a higher chance of being crushed by a vending machine.

There’s something I’ve always found mesmerizing about watching animals in the wild. They have the most incredible instincts, honed from countless generations of survival against constant threats. Animals have a keen sense of danger. They know immediately when something doesn’t feel right, and they act on it without hesitation. I saw an incredible

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… and now for the bad news

In the late 1760s and early 1770s, the government of France was in a deep panic. They had recently suffered a disastrous and costly defeat in the Seven Years War, and the national budget was a complete mess. France had spent most of the previous century as the world’s dominant superpower, and the

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The Final Show of the Greatest Country on Earth

On May 31, 1866, John C. Ringling was born in Iowa to German immigrants in what felt like an extremely bleak year. The chaos and devastation from the Civil War that had ended in 1865 were still keenly felt, and the US economy was in the midst of a deep recession The country

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A polite history of government “predictions”

Recently the Congressional Budget Office published a scathing report that the US government debt-to-GDP ratio will double over the next 30-years. Few government agencies are as blunt as the Congressional Budget Office. In fact the agency’s report plainly states that “the prospect of such large and growing debt poses substantial risks for the

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You can’t rely on Social Security. Do this instead

In the late in the 5th century BC, the government of ancient Rome came up with a new idea that has lasted for thousands of years. I’m not talking about their roads, republican form of government, or water sanitation. Their bold idea was to start paying retirement benefits to Roman soldiers. This was

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Nine years later, Greece is still in a debt crisis…

Sometimes you have to marvel at the absurdity of the financial universe in which we live. On one side of the Atlantic, we have the United States of America, which triggered yet another debt ceiling disaster last Thursday when the US government’s maximum allowable debt reset to just over $20 trillion. Of course,

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