Is the US national debt a problem?

Beats me. I majored in Philosophy, not Economics. My expertise would be more on the question- what does it mean that the US has a lot of debt… or why does debt exist… or if debt goes up and no one is paying attention, does it make a sound? (apparently not!)

Regardless- here is one opinion that thinks the US will soon collapse under the weight of its massive debt.

Actually, Dr. Chris Martenson fears that the real result will be decrease in the standard of living and skyrocketing inflation as the US tries to print itself out of its debt.

And here is another opinion that suggests US debt is low, relatively speaking and that the debt doomsday crowd will worry itself to extinction. Actually Mike Norman references Alexander Hamilton and states "…having a national debt is a national treasure, because it's a reflection of a nation's ability to establish and maintain credit.”

The most telling thing to me, when reading these two opinions side by side, is which sets of numbers each chooses to focus on and how they do not match. Both articles are from 2006 but Dr. Martenson’s was written after a recent US financial report was released. This report starts by claiming that there are not sufficient financial controls in place to verify the accuracy of the data. Having studied human nature a bit. I take this to indicate that the debt is likely more than reported. I then listen to Mr. Norman and have to agree, when compared to other governments, ours grows and produces quite admirably.

Regardless- my take away from this is to recommit to a mission of diversifying while investing- large companies and small, US, international, developed and developing markets, short term debt (bonds) long term debt, real estate, etc. Money will flow from one trend to another and if you are invested broadly, with good analysts picking sound companies, and contributing diversely and consistently, you ought to be able to build some wealth.

Thanks to Dave for forwarding Dr. Martenson's article.

No comments: