Every year, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) issues a long-term forecast on where federal budget deficits and national debt are headed. The projections from the official budget scorekeeper for Congress offer the best indication of where our current policies will take us.
The numbers themselves are alarming, showing debt rising constantly through the years well beyond levels we have ever seen before. CBO warns:
Large and growing federal debt over the coming decades would hurt the economy and constrain future budget policy. The amount of debt that is projected under the extended baseline would reduce national saving and income in the long term; increase the government’s interest costs, putting more pressure on the rest of the budget; limit lawmakers’ ability to respond to unforeseen events; and increase the likelihood of a fiscal crisis, an occurrence in which investors become unwilling to finance a government’s borrowing unless they are compensated with very high interest rates.
But the numbers are even more troubling when put into human terms. Showing how high and rising debt could affect the life of a typical American truly brings home the need to act to fix the debt and put the country on a much better path.
We’ll follow Hope from birth to her fifties. As she grows, so will the debt, just as CBO predicts. Increasingly, rising debt will affect her life in very concrete ways.
|Hope is Born||Hope at 10||Hope at 17||Hope at 30||Hope at 50|
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Check Out Debt Threat: The National Debt and You