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How deep is our debt?
As I sat at my office desk last week, reading about the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) that small employers can take advantage of to keep employees off unemployment. If the funds are used properly, the entire loan is forgivable, or becomes a loan at a very low interest rate.
Not only did the government step in to help keep people working during the COVID-19 pandemic, with the PPP and other government spending like the $1,200 we all got and hoped that we would spend it to keep the economy wheels turning.
But, what is that going to do to our nation’s overall debt? We will be placing that debt on top of our current national debt load and people that are yet unborn will be ones that will have to retire the debt.
As for the PPP that has funded some 4.9 million loans for a total of $517,892,0898,714 in forgivable loans as of July 15, 2020, the application period has been extended until August 8th. I applied for some of that money to keep funding our staff during the slow time of the past four months.
But, what is the government giveaway doing to our national debt and can we as a nation climb back out of that hole. I have been told that with President Trump’s recently enacted tax plan and high employment numbers before the pandemic struck, is that the federal tax collections were at an all time high, but the bottom fell out of that bucket as the pandemic put millions out of work.
I found a dated release from Senator Rand Paul and his “Waste Report,” which is an ongoing project cataloguing egregious examples of waste within the U.S. government.
Over the last year alone, the subcommittee on Federal Spending Oversight and Emergency Management (FSO) under Senate Paul’s leadership has uncovered over $1.8 billion in wasteful spending on frivolous projects. This level of spending which equals to nearly $35 million per week, matches the tax liability of approximately 250,000 average American taxpayers.
A recent edition of the “Waste Report” focused on the East-West Center at the University of Hawaii. The Center receives millions in federal funding each year to promote diplomacy with Asian and Pacific island nations. Those nations include China and Japan, two of our nation’s largest foreign creditors, which our government has borrowed $3.4 trillion to cover our annual deficit.
Other examples of wasteful government spending uncovered through “The Waste Report” include $8 million spent by the Department of Veterans Affairs to purchase solar panels that were never used and $28 million spent on heavy equipment lost by the Department of Defense in Afghanistan.
In addition to the $1.8 billion spent on the wasteful projects highlighted in the March 7th edition of the report stressed the long-term fiscal dangers posed by the ever-growing national debt.
This year, according to the report, the federal government spent $255 billion for interest on our debt, meaning that every American owes about $800 this year to pay for interest alone. If you consider only those who pay their taxes, this figure rises to $2,700 per taxpayer.
Lets try to pay off the debt and apply that $255 billion interest figure for some good for our nation.
Thanks for reading! ~Carlton