29th August 06:59
Is the United States flat-out broke? (year data)
Feds deny report
When the government announced this year its publicly held debt was in
the neighborhood of $3.6 trillion, it was quoting a figure that "ignores
massive imbalances" in other mandatory spending programs – such as
Medicare and Social Security – which actually inflate the national debt
by a factor of 10, according to published accounts.
that data was left out of the current budget do***ent because it may
have hurt President Bush's chances to sell a tax cut to the American
In his column, Burns said he met in January with Boston University
economist Dr. Laurence J. Kotlikoff at a restaurant in Sante Fe, N.M.,
shortly after John Snow had been named to replace Paul O'Neill as
secretary of the treasury. Burns said he met Kotlikoff as part of his
work on a new book project.
The newspaper columnist said Kotlikoff received a phone call as they
were leaving the restaurant informing him that "six months of work by
two economists was going to be deleted from the president's budget,"
which was to be published in February.
"The material to be deleted from the budget do***ent was an updating of
generational accounting. Mr. O'Neill had requested an estimate of the
true, long-term obligations of the U.S. government," Burns wrote.