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Economists Say Federal Debt Is Their Biggest Worry

March 2, 2011 by  

Economists say Federal debt is their biggest worryThe Federal government's growing debt is the biggest threat to long-term economic growth, according to a panel of economists.

According to media reports, the survey of 47 economists showed that the national deficit was a 4.1 level of concern, on a scale from one to five. The report, which was conducted by the National Association of Business Economics (NABE), was released on Feb. 28.

In November, the same panel of economists projected that the deficit would be $1.1 trillion by the end of fiscal year 2011. However, President Barack Obama's extension of George W. Bush's tax breaks has led experts to raise their debt forecast to $1.4 trillion by September. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has predicted that the gap will reach $1.5 trillion by the end of the fiscal year.

"Factors restraining growth include financial headwinds, uncertainty about future Federal government economic policies, a tepid housing market and sustained high unemployment," said NABE president Richard Wobbekind in a statement, quoted by Reuters.

The national debt is a point of contention on Capitol Hill as lawmakers face a government shutdown if a new budget is not approved by March 4. Republicans want to make sweeping cuts to the spending bill, while Democrats are concerned that a reduced budget will hinder economic growth.

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  • Charles

    I have a $4,000.00 debt that I so want to pay off. If I understand the thinking of the White House and others, I can pay this debt off more quickly, if I go out and purchase a TV, put a new roof on my house or purchase a new car. Is that correct?

    • 45caliber

      Only if you do all three on the credit.

    • http://?? Joe H.

      Alright Charles!!! Now you got it!!! Obamanomics 101!!!

  • Mick

    Charles says:
    March 2, 2011 at 7:28 am
    I have a $4,000.00 debt that I so want to pay off. If I understand the thinking of the White House and others, I can pay this debt off more quickly, if I go out and purchase a TV, put a new roof on my house or purchase a new car. Is that correct?
    **********************
    Very funny Charles unfotunately you’re not far from the truth many actually think its the way it works..

  • TIME

    I am just so glad we have a group of rocket scietist that can figure this out with such quick minded wit.
    Its much like the Talking egg heads we have in DC that can explain how spending more than you make will be an investment in something. I guess the question is investment in what is that again, the new Summer home on the Lake, or Beach, the Winter Home in the Mountains, and that new Gated Community home.

    Whats really even more insane is the number of MORE-OFFS that agree with them as well that are so happy to allow these world class Con Artist to rob them blind.
    I rest my case that the Bottle of STUPID has been hit way to hard.

    • 45caliber

      Personally, I believe instead of a “bottle of Stupid” it is simply that they have drunk so much alcohol over the years (like Teddy did) that all their final brain cells have expired.

      • http://?? Joe H.

        45caliber,
        I personally think teddy lost what little sense he had the very second that car hit the water!!!

  • Warrior

    When you have time, read over the GAO report on the guvmint duplication of programs and services. Maybe the “gang of six” can shoot straight but I’m not convinced as long as dickie durbin is one of them!

    http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d11318sp.pdf

  • Bus

    The incompatibility of Keynesian economics and democratic government is becoming ever more obvious. The people are willing to believe that services provided by the government are unending, and the politicians (only concerned with holding on to their jobs) are willing to keep the delusion alive by promising the sky. First of all the people need to wake up, not a very likely prospect when they are stupid enough to vote in an inexperienced neighborhood organizer, who’s main goal in life has been to get more and more from the cookie jar. (Now he’s in charge of the jar and still can’t figure out that cookies need to be put in before they can be extracted). So as long as the people are so stupid as to believe the politicians there isn’t much hope of avoiding an economic meltdown.

    • 45caliber

      You can see that plainly in Wish-consin right now. Those protesting are certain that if they force the government to not change things the money will still be coming fifty years from now. After all since it is a government it MUST have the money! All this talk of running out can’t be true!

  • Larry Owens

    obama is a snake in the grass he is destroying our country from with in, we do not need to worry about the terrorist in other countries. We had better worry about the one in the WH.

  • Mick

    Larry Owens says:
    March 2, 2011 at 9:06 am
    obama is a snake in the grass he is destroying our country from with in, we do not need to worry about the terrorist in other countries. We had better worry about the one in the WH.

    ******************************************
    Larry,,,,,,Don’t forget to put th bunch of democrats representatives in the same bag, Obama is not destroying our country alone the rest of the scums bags have been working at it for decades he is just putting the final touch on the whole thing…….

    • 45caliber

      Correct. He is forcing through the last things they wanted that Congress hadn’t gotten to yet due to fear of the electorate.

  • http://aol Linda Maddox

    I have sent this letter to my local paper. So far they have not printed it.
    5 years ago, my family moved to Carlsbad! Carlsbad is heaven on earth. If you have money!

    The economy is not business friendly right now. We are in construction, we have grown our business for over 25 years. Our income last year was 25% of what is normal for us.

    So, what did we do that our government refuses to do? Did we continue to spend, forget about tomarrow? Borrow money from banks? Put our family into more debt, like Obama has done to our country?

    No, we sold our beautiful house. Went back to where we came from, the beautiful Temecula Valley. We moved back to Wildomar, low cost housing, low taxes. We are thinking ahead! We are going to get through these hard times.

    We expect the newly elected Tea Party candidates to hold the Dems feet to the fire. We expect them to save our Reublic. We expect them to cut the spending, and do what ever it is to get this debt under control.

    We expect them to act like responsible adults, not adult children!

    • barbm

      if what happened yesterday is any indication of what we can expect from our current congress, don’t hold your breath. a $4 billion cut when we were promised $100 billion. bah humbug.

  • http://www.chandostransport@eastlink.ca Graeme B

    It’s stange that Clinton left us with surpluses and yet GWB increased the deficit by over $1trillion per year. The tax breaks to the top 5% cost $4.2 trillion of borrowed money. The top 5%, who in 1984, when Reagan brought in the trickle down magic with tax breaks, had a net worth of $8 trillion. Today they are only worth $47 trillion and yet congress agreed to extend the break for two more years of borrowed money to give them a bigger break. All this under the guise of it being a “tax increase” at a time of recession.
    GWB left us with a deficit of $1.2 trillion and yet we now blame Obama for the whole mess. Between Reagan, George 1 and 2 the national debt has gone up by $12 trillion!!.
    Another figur not factored in, is the off balance sheet figures that Wall Street created which have never been quantified. Some say they are in the region of $55 trillion.?? Now that’s what I call a real mess and nobody has ever been convicted for this crime against the whole world.

    • independant thinker

      “It’s stange that Clinton left us with surpluses and yet GWB increased the deficit by over $1trillion per year.”

      Clinton did not leave us with a surplus. The much ballyhood surplus was a surplus on paper only for the last two years of his adminstration and did nothing to reduce the national debt. This was forced on him by the republican controlled congress although slick willie took credit for it.

    • Sunnie

      “It’s stange that Clinton left us with surpluses and yet GWB increased the deficit by over $1trillion per year. The tax breaks to the top 5% cost $4.2 trillion of borrowed money. The top 5%, who in 1984, when Reagan brought in the trickle down magic with tax breaks, had a net worth of $8 trillion. Today they are only worth $47 trillion and yet congress agreed to extend the break for two more years of borrowed money to give them a bigger break. All this under the guise of it being a “tax increase” at a time of recession.”
      ***********************************************************************

      It’s so amazing to me how “progressives” have such short memories. As I recall, Bill Clinton signed an order that POSTPONED a huge debt and removed it from the budget. VOILA! A balanced budget! This left the next president to absorb that little item in his budget which instantatneously brought back the deficit. That was just sleight of hand. Isn’t that the way progressives do things?

      Don’t remember what the item was, but I do remember thinking that the next president was going to get blamed for the increase.

      • Aix Sponsa

        amen

      • barbm

        they also forget that it was clinton who forced home loans for people who couldn’t make a down payment or afford the monthly payments when the variable interest rates started rising. the housing crisis is a big part of this recession we’re in.

      • 45caliber

        There was no “Balanced” budget. Instead they authorized spending that greatly exceeded the budget. Not all of it was spent. They had spent more than they received (creating a debt) but since it wasn’t as much as they had thought to send they insisted they had a surplus.

        That is the same as if you went to a store to buy a television for $500. You borrow $300 to buy it with $200 of your own money. Instead you get a television for $350. So you claim that you “saved” $150 which offset the $150 you did spend of the borrowed money – balancing your budget for the TV. The truth is – you still borrowed and overspent what you had by $150.

        • 45caliber

          The “surplus” in this example would be the $150 of borrowed money you didn’t spend. That was the same as Clinton’s “surplus”.

        • http://www.chandostransport@eastlink.ca Graeme B

          Funny eveyone has concentrated on the remark re Clinton. What about the real spenders, Reagan, George 1 and 2? Did they not increase the deficit by $12 trillion or am I missing something?

          • 45caliber

            They did borrow a lot. So? By the way, it is NOT the deficiet. It is the debt. These are two different things. Actually, during Reagon’s time, he set up the Grace Commission. They found out that THEN we didn’t have a debt; we had far more foreign government bonds than we had sold of ours. The real problem I saw was that the foreign countries weren’t very likely to cash them for us. Still, on paper we were well ahead. But they haven’t spoken of those bonds since. If I remember correctly, our actual debt, if we bought ours back and sold the ones we hold are less than half that $13 trillion. But as I said, I can’t see them doing it – and even one trillion is one too many as far as I’m concerned.

          • http://?? Joe H.

            Graeme,
            If you have ten dollars in your pocket, are you able to spend that ten dollars two different places at the same time?? Say, ten for coffee and ten for gas?? That’s exactly what Clinton did e took money that was earmarked for social security and also spent it on the budget thus making it look like there was a surplus when in FACT, there was a deficit!!!

    • Bob G

      Clinton sold short term bonds to shore up his failing economy. Result was fast cash. When the bonds came due Slick Willy was gone. And GWB got stuck with the debt. Hail Slick Willy!

  • s c

    NABE has to be closer the solution than ANY hack government economist. Anyone in the business world can tell you about the pitfalls of a spend, spend, spend mentality. The main reason why our Washington retards don’t understand that maxim is due to their delusion that America’s wealth belongs to the friggin’ government.
    Please remember, folks, that Uncle Scam does what he does because he is NOT accountable to the American people. This fantasy lets him do whatever he wants, and since the old fart tends to get his way, odds are that America will self-destruct.
    Granted, solutions won’t be easy, and the cure will be painful, BUT it’s that or the end of freedom in America. Forget a white knight on a white horse. The knight is AWOL and the horse was sent to a glue factory.
    What have we to lose by making it illegal and immoral to be a career, Darwinian politician? What have we got to lose by not having to endure the insanity of government economists? FIX it, OR get used to wearing chains. Choose while you can.

  • Mick

    Linda Maddox says:
    March 2, 2011 at 9:28 am
    No, we sold our beautiful house. Went back to where we came from, the beautiful Temecula Valley. We moved back to Wildomar, low cost housing, low taxes. We are thinking ahead! We are going to get through these hard times.

    We expect the newly elected Tea Party candidates to hold the Dems feet to the fire. We expect them to save our Reublic. We expect them to cut the spending, and do what ever it is to get this debt under control.

    We expect them to act like responsible adults, not adult children!
    **********************************************

    Linda,,,At the risk of sounding jocose there is nothing low cost in california, especially taxes,
    Although I feel the same way you do about holding the Democrat’s feet to the fire i wouldn’t continue to live in a state that continues to side with the left no matter how deep in caca they insist on being…

  • Aix Sponsa

    What I find very interesting is that most people are looking for a simple, “point your finger at one person/group” type answer to the one of the present geo, political, economic, social, etc. situations.

    Just remember that anytime you are pointing at someone, that three fingers are pointing back at you.

    There is no simple answer.

    • barbm

      first, pointing fingers isn’t going to make it go away even if we had just one name to blame. second, it’s everybody’s fault – the dems, the reps, and ours for being asleep at the wheel for far too long. i guess you could say it was our complacency that’s most to blame. we let them do this to our country. now, it’s going to be a job making them fix it. $4 billion in cuts yesterday. that’s like a 500 pound human losing .005 oz on a diet. not much of a difference.

  • 45caliber

    The way to grow an economy is to have people who are sure enough of a good economy to be willing to buy things they would like to have but aren’t a necessity. And in a bad economy that won’t happen.

    Spending by the government does NOT improve an economy since it takes money from the people who would otherwise spend it. All it does is make the people worried enough about having enough money to spend on necessities that they won’t spend on other items. And generally government spending is not on items which requires production anyway; it is simply to hire more people on government payrolls for jobs that aren’t needed. Shifting workers to a government payroll simply increases the need for more tax money which requires more from the tax payers – who are the people who need to spend instead of save for rainy days.

    • s c

      45 caliber, your understanding of basic economics is, without a doubt, wider and deeper than a certain useful idiot who calls himself the Fed “head.” THAT airhead supposedly knows more about the Great Depression than any other living American.
      In his case, it merely points out the sickening gap between theory and knowledge. Helicopter Ben may object to being tossed out of a helicopter when his ‘stuff’ hits the fan. What he and his ilk have done to America since the creation of the Fed makes rape seem like a virtuous act.
      I’m not in a tacky mood today, or I’d toss a sincere et tu in Ben the Boob’s direction. Just let me say that America is about to go through something that will forever separate theorists and lovers of facts.
      May old Ben enjoy his 15 minutes of fame. I wonder if there’s a parachute in his helicopter.

  • Nash

    GMA had a great artical on buying american made products, to me we as americans schould be saying enough is enough, buy american needs to ring out across america not a call to arms

    • Lisa

      I agree with Nash, we do need to buy more American goods,within our own state as well, That is if we can find them.

      I don’t know about the rest of you,but this year i’m planting a victory garden, and my family has already stopped buying certain products that don’t stimulate our state and nations economy.

      Of course how will this help the debt? we got to reign in the big spenders and the big wasters in government the truth has gotta be more transparent.

      • http://?? Joe H.

        Lisa,
        hope you aren’t near a company” farm!!!

  • home boy

    this group of politicians is no different than the ones 20 years ago. nobody wants to have a black mark on their resume and that’s what will happen if they vote for more reductions. people will say it was their fault and then they won’t get elected. and thats all they care about is getting reelected.

  • lisa

    Don’t worry(sarcasm) the government will just print more funny money,devalue our dollar and pass on the rest of of the cost to the us tax payer.

    But its ok, I am so honored to pay for pork belly spending and waste, I mean its the least I can do right?

    • http://?? Joe H.

      lisa, sounds like the old song, “Don’t Worry, Be Happy!” Man I would love to see the fifties again!!!

  • john galt

    browsers:
    total u.$ debts $200t, 12 zeroes. two hundred tom.
    Western nations borrow to pay interest, cant pay prici-
    ple.

  • http://charden@neo.rr.com Charles

    The quickest thing to bring down a Household is Debt.A person will forgive his or her spouse for messing around than they will if there is no money. Money leads to all the other bad things What is good or bad for a household is also good or bad for a country. You people who keep blaming Bush is not doing any good.This is Obams mess and he makes it a bigger mess,which it looks like he is, then it is his fault.I`m not a Bush fan , but i`m not a Obama fan either.

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