When it comes to taking a chainsaw to the future of America, nobody seems more eager than Barack Obama. Despite the fact that the U.S. national debt is on pace to approximately double during his eight years in the White House, he has just proposed a budget that would take government spending to crazy new heights. When Barack Obama took the oath of office, the U.S. national debt was 10.6 trillion dollars. Today, it has surpassed the 18 trillion dollar mark. And even though we are being told that “deficits are going down”, the truth is that the U.S. national debt increased by more than a trillion dollars in fiscal 2014. But that isn’t good enough for Obama. He says that we need to come out of this period of “mindless austerity” and steal money from our children and our grandchildren even faster. In addition, Obama wants to raise taxes again. His budget calls for 2 trillion dollars in tax increases over the next decade. He always touts these tax increases as “tax hikes on the rich”, but somehow they almost always seem to end up hitting the middle class too. But whether or not Congress ever adopts Obama’s new budget is not really the issue. The reality of the matter is that the “tax and spend Democrats” and the “tax and spend Republicans” are both responsible for getting us into this mess. Future generations of Americans are already facing the largest mountain of debt in the history of the planet, and both parties want to make this mountain of debt even higher. The only disagreement is about how fast it should happen. It is a national disgrace, but most Americans have come to accept this as “normal”. If our children and our grandchildren get the opportunity, they will curse us for what we have done to them.
All debt destroys.
All debt enslaves.
And when you are talking about an 18 trillion dollar debt, you are talking about an amount of money that is almost unimaginable.
If our national debt was reduced to a stack of one dollar bills, it would circle our planet at the equator 45 times.
How could we have done such a thing?
Thomas Jefferson once said that “the principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but swindling futurity on a large scale.” He correctly understood that government debt is stealing. We are financially raping our children, our grandchildren and all future generations of Americans. It is an incredibly wicked thing to do.
But instead of men like Thomas Jefferson running our country, we have men like Barack Obama running it.
And to Barack Obama, running up a trillion dollars of debt a year is “mindless austerity”…
“I want to work with Congress to replace mindless austerity with smart investments that strengthen America,” Obama said in a speech at the Department of Homeland Security. “I’m not going to accept a budget that locks in sequestration going forward. It would be bad for our security, and bad for our growth.”
Yes, if we steal money from future generations it will artificially inflate our current standard of living and make our economy look temporarily better than it should be.
But it is morally wrong to do this, and our current crop of politicians have no intentions of ever bringing the debt party to an end.
Even with the ridiculously optimistic economic assumptions that are used in Obama’s new budget, the federal budget is never projected to balance within the next decade. Instead, Obama’s budget projects that the national debt will rise from 18.1 trillion dollars right now to 26.2 trillion dollars in 2025.
Of course it would greatly help if the federal government actually spent our money wisely. But instead, the feds often waste our hard-earned tax dollars in some of the most bizarre ways imaginable. The following is just one example…
The U.S. federal government has prompted controversy after spending over $33,000 on a study to find out whether same-sex couples live closer to tobacco shops than heterosexuals.
The large sum was spent on a study by the National Institutes of Health entitled, ‘Relationship Between Tobacco Retailer Density and Sexual Minority Couples.’
Thanks to this kind of insane spending, our debt is completely and totally out of control.
While Barack Obama has been in the White House, the U.S. national debt has increased by $84,266 per full-time private sector worker. Anyone that believes that this kind of debt accumulation is sustainable is absolutely delusional.
The only reason why our house of cards has not completely collapsed already is because the rest of the world has been willing to lend us gigantic piles of money at artificially low interest rates.
In December, the average rate of interest on the government’s marketable debt was 2.013 percent. But in the past, interest rates have been much higher than that. For example, in January 2000 the average rate of interest on the government’s marketable debt was 6.620 percent. If we returned to that level today, we would be paying well over a trillion dollars a year just in interest on the national debt.
And the issue isn’t just the more than one trillion dollars in new debt that we are accumulating every 12 months.
As I have discussed previously, the U.S. government has more than seven trillion dollars of debt that must be “rolled over” each year. In other words, the federal government must issue more than seven trillion dollars of new debt just to pay off old debts that are coming due.
If something were to happen which would cause the rest of the planet to either be unwilling or unable to lend us trillions of dollars at ridiculously low interest rates all of a sudden, the game would be over.
We were handed the keys to the greatest and most prosperous economy in the history of the planet, and our greed has totally wrecked it.
We were wealthy beyond imagination, but that was never good enough for us. We always had to have more.
And now we are hurtling toward financial oblivion, and we have a man in the White House that wants us to go into debt even faster.
Are you deeply concerned about the future of America? Is something in your gut telling you that our system is fundamentally broken and that the mainstream media is not telling you the truth about what is happening? If so, you are definitely not alone. Right now, there are millions upon millions of Americans that are absolutely horrified as they watch this nation deteriorate. In fact, according to an analysis of recent polling data conducted by Real Clear Politics, approximately 68 percent of all Americans believe that the country is on the wrong track and only 23.5 percent of all Americans believe that the country is on the right track. And of course our problems did not appear just recently. In fact, many of them are the result of decades of very foolish decisions and they are not going to be fixed easily. Unfortunately, there is very little consensus among Americans about how to fix any of our problems. There is more anger, frustration, hatred and division in the United States today than there has been in decades, and there is very little hope that the great storms that are looming on the horizon will be averted. Those that are wise are preparing for what is coming. Those that are not are going to be absolutely blindsided by what is rapidly approaching.
Once upon a time, America was the wealthiest nation on the entire globe by a huge margin and it had the largest and most thriving middle class the world had ever seen. But now America is drowning in the biggest ocean of red ink in the history of the planet and the middle class is being systematically destroyed.
If you read my articles on a regular basis, you already know all of this. But now there are certain factors that are going to cause the problems of the middle class to greatly accelerate.
For instance, just consider what Obamacare is going to do to millions of American families.
The Foundry recently posted a story that detailed the extreme hardship that Obamacare is going to impose on one middle class family in Sonora, California. This particular family is very healthy and does not have a history of health problems. Up until now, they have had a health insurance policy with Anthem Blue Cross Insurance that they have been very happy with.
Back in 2011, this family was paying $389 a month for health insurance.
In 2012, due to changes in California law that figure went up to $499 a month.
Now, this family has just received a letter informing them that their current plan is being canceled and that if they want a new plan it is going to cost them $1,252 a month.
Needless to say, that news did not go over very well with that family.
Just think about it.
Can you come up with an extra $753 a month for health insurance?
Most American families certainly cannot.
Well, Kate Joy and her husband sat down and started trying to figure out how they could squeeze the new health insurance policy into their budget. It turned out that they would have to cut out a lot of things. The following is a list of the proposed cuts that they have come up with so far…
- Stop paying the extra payment on my mortgage: $100/month
- Stop eating out: $150/month
- Don’t go to the movies: $36/month
- Switch to getting a haircut every other month: $15/month
- Stop getting manicures: $40/month
- Stop monthly charitable donations to Wounded Warrior and Habitat for Humanity: $70/month
- Stop saving for an annual anniversary getaway: $60/month
- No Christmas gifts to extended family: $40/month
- Quit buying beef at the grocery store: $100/month
- Teeth cleaning only once per year: $30/month
- Cancel all magazine/newspaper subscriptions: at least $30/month
- Cut DISH service to cheaper plan: $50/month
- Cancel land line phone service: $70/month
If they make all of those cuts, it will save the family $791 a month.
Understandably, that family is having a very hard time feeling optimistic about the future right now. In fact, at the end of the article Kate Joy is quoted as saying the following…
“I fear for what’s coming.”
And of course her family is not the only one that is being absolutely hammered by Obamacare.
In a previous article, I discussed the results of one study which showed that health insurance premiums for men are going to go up by an average of 99 percent under Obamacare and health insurance premiums for women are going to go up by an average of 62 percent under Obamacare.
And a different study found that health insurance premiums for healthy 30-year-old men are going to go up by an average of 260 percent under Obamacare.
All of this is going to suck a tremendous amount of “discretionary income” out of the economy.
In addition, millions upon millions of Americans are going to make the choice to go without health insurance altogether. And considering the level of care that we get in many of these hospitals that is understandable. For example, the body of 57-year-old Lynne Spalding was recently discovered in a stairwell at San Francisco General Hospital 17 days after she had disappeared from her hospital room.
Those that provide our “health care” don’t care about us as much as they did in the old days. Instead, the health care industry just wants to get as much money out of us as rapidly as they can and then move on to the next victim.
And of course health care is not the only thing that middle class families have to be concerned about these days. Our national employment crisis is getting even worse, incomes are shrinking, and Obama is pushing Congress to approve a secret treaty that will ship millions more of our jobs out of the country.
And there are certainly a lot of troubling economic signs as we head toward 2014. Just consider the following examples…
-Pending home sales in the United States have fallen for five months in a row.
-Machinery giant Caterpillar is reporting negative retail sales growth in every region on the globe. Historically, the sales growth of Caterpillar has been one of the most important indications of where the economy is headed next.
-Major banks are warning the Federal Reserve that they may have to start charging depositors a fee. In other words, you may soon have to pay for the “privilege” of putting your money in the bank.
Of course this is just the beginning. Things are going to get much, much worse in the years ahead as our economy continues to deteriorate.
And as things continue to fall apart, people are going to become a lot more desperate. To get an idea of what is coming to America, just look at what is happening in Greece. Some poor people in Greece have become so desperate that they are literally infecting themselves with HIV just so that they can get monthly government payments…
Suicides rose by 17% between 2007 and 2009 and to 25% in 2010, according to unofficial 2010 data (398). The Minister of Health reported a further 40% rise in the first half of 2011 compared with the same period in 2010. Suicide attempts have also increased, particularly among people reporting economic distress (610). Homicide and theft rates have doubled. HIV rates and heroin use have risen significantly, with about half of new HIV infections being self-inflicted to enable people to receive benefits of €700 per month and faster admission on to drug-substitution programmes. Prostitution has also risen, probably as a response to economic hardship. Health care access has declined as hospital budgets have been cut by about 40% (398) and it is estimated that 26 000 public health workers (9100 doctors) will lose their jobs (611). Further cuts are expected as a result of recent negotiations with the IMF and European Central Bank.
If you doubt this, you can find the original report with these findings right here.
A lot of people accuse me of being a “doom and gloomer” for writing articles like this.
A lot of people accuse me of trying to spread worry and fear.
But I do not see it that way at all.
I was recently asked what the number one issue is that has me so worried that it keeps me up at night.
Do you know what my answer was?
Nothing that I write about keeps me up at night.
I am not worried about what is coming and I do not believe in giving in to fear.
Rather, I believe that there is hope in understanding what is happening, and I believe that there is hope in getting prepared.
Do you want to know who is going to be totally giving in to worry, fear and despair in the years ahead?
The people that are not getting prepared right now.
Do you want to know who is going to be jumping off the top of tall buildings in the years ahead?
The people that are laughing at articles like this one.
For most adults in America, they primarily define their lives by their jobs, their material possessions and by all of the toys that they have accumulated. When those things get taken away, we are going to see a national hissy fit that is absolutely unprecedented.
The Republicans are not going to save us from the storm that is coming and neither are the Democrats.
It is coming.
That is why I am urging people to get prepared on an individual basis, a family basis and a community basis.
If you prepare yourself and your family now, you will have a much better chance of surviving the coming storm. And you will be in much better position to help those that will need your assistance.
If you think back throughout history, most of those that we consider to be the greatest “heroes” emerged during times of great crisis.
Well, another time of great crisis is coming, and this will be a tremendous opportunity for a new generation of heroes to arise.
So do not cower in fear because of what is coming. Rather, use this time to get prepared for the greatest challenges and the greatest opportunities that you have ever known.
When things are the darkest, that is when the light is needed the most.
Choose to be a light. America will soon need you greatly.
What would you do if a police officer threatened to arrest you for trying to share a sandwich with a desperately hungry homeless woman that really needed it? Such a notion sounds absolutely bizarre, but this is actually happening in major cities all over the United States. More than 50 large U.S. cities have adopted “anti-camping” or “anti-food sharing” laws in recent years, and in many of these cities the police are strictly enforcing these laws. Sometimes the goal appears to be to get the homeless people to go away. Apparently the heartless politicians that are passing these laws believe that if the homeless can’t get any more free food and if they keep getting thrown into prison for “illegal camping” they will eventually decide to go somewhere else where they won’t be hassled so much. This is yet another example of how heartless our society is becoming. The middle class is being absolutely shredded and poverty is absolutely exploding, but meanwhile the hearts of many Americans are growing very cold. If this continues, what is the future of America going to look like?
An organization called Love Wins Ministries made national headlines recently when police in Raleigh, North Carolina threatened to arrest them if they distributed sausage biscuits and coffee to homeless people living in the heart of the city. Love Wins Ministries had been doing this for years, but now it is apparently illegal. The following is from someone who was actually there…
On the morning of Saturday, August, 24, Love Wins showed up at Moore Square at 9:00 a.m., just like we have done virtually every Saturday and Sunday for the last six years. We provide, without cost or obligation, hot coffee and a breakfast sandwich to anyone who wants one. We keep this promise to our community in cooperation with five different, large suburban churches that help us with manpower and funding.
On that morning three officers from Raleigh Police Department prevented us from doing our work, for the first time ever. An officer said, quite bluntly, that if we attempted to distribute food, we would be arrested.
Our partnering church brought 100 sausage biscuits and large amounts of coffee. We asked the officers for permission to disperse the biscuits to the over 70 people who had lined up, waiting to eat. They said no. I had to face those who were waiting and tell them that I could not feed them, or I would be arrested.
Does reading that upset you?
And this is not just happening in Raleigh – this is literally happening all over the country.
In Orlando, Florida laws against feeding the homeless were actually upheld in court…
Since when is it illegal to give somebody food? In Orlando FL, it has been since April 2011, when a group of activists lost a court battle against the city to overturn its 2006 laws that restrict sharing food with groups of more than 25 people. The ordinance requires those who do these “large” charitable food sharings in parks within two miles of City Hall to obtain a permit and limits each group to two permits per park for a year.
That is yet another example of how corrupt and unjust our court system has become.
The funny thing is that some of these control freak politicians actually believe that they are “helping” the homeless by passing such laws. In New York City, Mayor Bloomberg has banned citizens from donating food directly to homeless shelters and he is actually convinced that it was the right thing to do for the homeless…
Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s food police have struck again!
Outlawed are food donations to homeless shelters because the city can’t assess their salt, fat and fiber content, reports CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer.
Glenn Richter arrived at a West Side synagogue on Monday to collect surplus bagels — fresh nutritious bagels — to donate to the poor. However, under a new edict from Bloomberg’s food police he can no longer donate the food to city homeless shelters.
Do you really think that the homeless care about the “salt, fat and fiber content” of their food?
Of course not.
They just want to eat.
It would be one thing if there were just a few isolated cities around the nation that were passing these kinds of laws. Unfortunately, that is not the case. In fact, according to USA Today, more than 50 large cities have passed such laws…
Atlanta, Phoenix, San Diego, Los Angeles, Miami, Oklahoma City and more than 50 other cities have previously adopted some kind of anti-camping or anti-food-sharing laws, according to the National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty.
You can find many more examples of this phenomenon in one of my previous articles.
What in the world is happening to America?
The way that we treat the most vulnerable members of our society says a lot about who we are as a nation.
Sadly, it is not just our politicians that are becoming heartless. Below, I have posted a copy of a letter that was sent to a family with a severely autistic child. This happened up in Canada, but I think that it is a perfect example of how cold and heartless society is becoming…
Can you believe that?
Hearts are growing cold at the same time that the need for love and compassion in our society is growing.
As I proved the other day, there has not been any economic recovery for most Americans, and a recent CNBC article echoed those sentiments…
How strong the economic recovery has been since the Great Recession ended in 2009 probably depends on viewpoint.
For those in the top 5 percent, the recovery has been pretty good.
As for the other 95 percent, well … maybe not so much.
Even though corporate profits have soared to record levels in recent years and Wall Street has boomed thanks to Federal Reserve money printing, most Americans are still really struggling. The following very startling chart comes via Jim Quinn’s Burning Platform blog…
The mainstream media continually insists that we are in an “economic recovery” and that the economy “is growing”, but median household income is actually 4.4 percent lower than it was when the last recession officially “ended”.
There aren’t nearly enough jobs for everyone anymore, and the quality of the jobs that do exist continues to decline at a frightening pace.
As a result, more Americans are being forced to turn to the government for help than ever before. At this point, more than 100 million Americans are on welfare, and that does not even count programs such as Medicare or Social Security.
But nobody should ever look down on those that are getting government assistance.
The truth is that you might be next.
In fact, according to the Associated Press, four out of every five adults in the United States will “struggle with joblessness, near poverty or reliance on welfare for at least parts of their lives”.
So don’t ever be afraid to feed the homeless or to assist someone in need.
Someday you might be the one that needs the help.
Should taxpayer dollars be used to buy sushi and lobster for a young man whose future plans consist entirely of surfing and partying as much as he possibly can? When I first saw the video that I am about to share with you, I was absolutely floored. Recently, Fox News interviewed a self-described beach bum named Jason Greenslate who was very open about the fact that he has no problem sponging off of all the rest of us. When he was asked if he ever had any interest in actually getting a job, his response was “not whatsoever”. Instead, he says that his job is to “make sure the sun’s up and the girls are out” and he would rather spend his days partying. Of course every American should be free to live their own lives as they see fit, but the problem is that Jason Greenslate is using food stamps to help support his lifestyle. In fact, he took Fox News into the gourmet section of a local supermarket where he purchased sushi and lobster with his EBT card. Sadly, he is just like millions of other young men in America today that seemingly have had the drive to succeed and to be independent totally sucked out of them. But what is the future of America going to look like if we continue to produce millions upon millions of young men that have absolutely no desire to make a living, get married and start a family?
Posted below is video from the Fox News interview with Jason Greenslate. If you are a taxpayer, this video should upset you greatly…
Of course the vast majority of those enrolled in the food stamp program are NOT like this. As I wrote about the other day, the economic independence of middle class Americans is being systematically destroyed. The percentage of self-employed Americans is at a record low and the percentage of Americans with a full-time job has dropped to a shockingly low level.
And the quality of our jobs continues to decline. If you can believe it, 40 percent of all workers in the United States today actually make less than what a full-time minimum wage worker made back in 1968.
As a result of our ongoing economic problems, we have seen wave after wave of Americans forced to go on food stamps. Between the year 2000 and the first inauguration of Barack Obama, the number of Americans on food stamps increased by 15 million. Since Barack Obama has been in the White House, the number of Americans on food stamps has increased by 15 million more.
At this point we have a total of 47 million Americans on food stamps, and most of them definitely need the help.
But there are also those such as Jason Greenslate that are openly abusing the system and making it more difficult for those that actually need the help to get it.
Sadly, he is a product of the system that he was raised in. There is a reason why so many young men are “checking out” and rejecting the traditional path of making a living, getting married and having a family.
In America today, the average American watches an average of 153 hours of television a month. All of that “programming” has an extremely powerful impact on all of us.
The next time you watch a television show or a movie, take note of how young men are portrayed and watch what values are being promoted to them. The truth is that they are not being taught to work hard, to be responsible or to want to be good fathers and good husbands.
It is easy to jump on Jason Greenslate, but the cold, hard reality of the matter is that there are millions of others out there just like him. Consider the following numbers…
-In America today, 36 percent of all young adults in the 18 to 31 age bracket are currently living with their parents.
-Young men are nearly twice as likely to live with their parents as young women the same age are.
-In 2011, SAT scores for young men were the worst that they had been in 40 years.
-According to the New York Times, approximately 57 percent of all young people enrolled at U.S. colleges are women. That means that only 43 percent are men.
-It is being projected that women will earn 60 percent of all Bachelor’s degrees from U.S. universities by the year 2016.
-Back in 1950, more than 80 percent of all men in the United States had jobs. Today, less than 65 percent of all men in the United States have jobs.
-Between 1969 and 2009 the median wages earned by American men between the ages of 30 and 50 dropped by 27 percent after you account for inflation.
-As I mentioned in a previous article, the marriage rate in the United States has fallen to an all-time low…
The marriage rate has fluctuated in the past, with dips in the 1930s and 1960s, but it has been in steady decline since the 1970s. Now, researchers report that the marriage rate has dropped to a new low of 31.1, meaning there are about 31 marriages in the U.S. for every 1,000 unmarried women, researchers found. In 1950, that number was 90.2. In 1920, it was 92.3.
-Back in 1950, 78 percent of all households in the United States contained a married couple. Today, that number has declined to 48 percent.
–Today, an all-time low 44.2 percent of all Americans between the ages of 25 and 34 are married.
–The U.S. family is rapidly breaking down. 100 years ago, 4.52 were living in the average U.S. household, but now the average U.S. household only consists of 2.59 people.
–At this point, approximately one out of every three children in America lives in a home without a father.
Instead of endeavoring to become a husband, a father and a productive member of society, Jason Greenslate wants to party on the “safety net” forever.
But if we continue to have millions upon millions more Americans jump on to the “safety net” eventually it will break.
Just this week, Fox News reported on another stunning abuse of the safety net. Large numbers of illegal immigrants have learned that they can get across the border and get a free hotel room by claiming that they have a “credible fear” of the Mexican drug cartels…
A sudden influx of illegal immigrants from Mexico requesting asylum is overwhelming immigration agents in San Diego, forcing agencies to rent hotel rooms for some undocumented families and release others to cities around the U.S.
Documents obtained exclusively by Fox News show Immigration and Customs Enforcement has been paying for hotel rooms for dozens of recently arrived families to relieve overcrowding inside the San Ysidro and Otay Mesa, Calif., processing centers. Some ICE employees are working overtime and others have been asked to volunteer to work weekend shifts. “Duties include intake, placements, transports and release of family groups and unaccompanied minors,” according to a memo obtained by Fox News.
The surge has raised suspicions about what is driving the influx, amid claims that illegal immigrants have learned they can attempt to get asylum by using a few key words — namely, by claiming they have a “credible fear” of drug cartels.
Yes, we definitely want to help the poor and those that truly need our assistance. But at this point about half of all Americans get money from the government every month, and that number is climbing with each passing day.
Meanwhile, our economic system continues to get even closer to a meltdown. On Tuesday I wrote about the stunning cluster of Hindenburg Omens that we have seen lately, and now another one has appeared. On Wednesday we witnessed the 6th Hindenburg Omen that we have seen in the last 8 trading days. The only similar clusters in recent history occurred just before the last financial crash and just before the end of the “dotcom boom”.
In addition, the level of margin debt continues to signal that big trouble is ahead. We recently learned that margin debt hit a brand new all-time high of 384 billion dollars in April, and this is repeating a pattern that we saw just before the financial crash of 2008 and the busting of the dotcom bubble in 2000.
So what is going to happen when the next great financial crash arrives and millions upon millions more Americans are forced to turn to the government for assistance?
And what will happen when the government is forced to start cutting back on benefits because there isn’t enough money?
Sadly, our leaders do not understand that a crash is coming. They keep insisting that everything is going to be just fine.
But remember, the last financial crash caught them entirely by surprise as well. For example, one of the top contenders to be the next head of the Federal Reserve, Janet Yellen, once made the following shocking admission about the last financial crisis…
“For my own part,” Ms. Yellen said, “I did not see and did not appreciate what the risks were with securitization, the credit ratings agencies, the shadow banking system, the S.I.V.’s — I didn’t see any of that coming until it happened.” Her startled interviewers noted that almost none of the officials who testified had offered a similar acknowledgment of an almost universal failure.
The blind are leading the blind, and none of them are going to see it coming.
But without a doubt the next great financial crash is rapidly approaching.
The system is failing, and people like Jason Greenslate are going to be in for a very rude awakening in the years ahead.
Now is the time to take responsibility, work hard and get prepared for the hard years that are coming. Nobody else is going to do it for you, and when everything starts collapsing the government is NOT going to come riding to your rescue.
Eventually the money runs out. Much of America was shocked when the city of Detroit defaulted on a $39.7 million debt payment and announced that it was suspending payments on $2.5 billion of unsecured debt, but those who visit my site on a regular basis were probably not too surprised. Anyone with half a brain and a calculator could see this coming from a mile away. But people kept foolishly lending money to the city of Detroit, and now many of them are going to get hit really hard. Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr has submitted a proposal that would pay unsecured creditors about 10 cents on the dollar. Similar haircuts would be made to underfunded pension and health benefits for retirees. Orr is hoping that the creditors and the unions that he will be negotiating with will accept this package, but he concedes that there is still a “50-50 chance” that the city of Detroit will be forced to formally file for bankruptcy. But what Detroit is facing is not really that unique. In fact, Detroit is a perfect example of what the future of America is going to look like. We live in a nation that is rotting, decaying, drowning in debt and racing toward insolvency. Already there are dozens of other cities across the nation that are poverty-ridden, crime-infested hellholes just like Detroit is, and hundreds of other communities are rapidly heading in that direction. So don’t look down on Detroit. They just got there before the rest of us.
The following are some facts about Detroit that are absolutely mind-blowing…
1 – Detroit was once the fourth-largest city in the United States, and in 1960 Detroit had the highest per-capita income in the entire nation.
2 – Over the past 60 years, the population of Detroit has fallen by 63 percent.
3 – At this point, approximately 40 percent of all the streetlights in the city don’t work.
4 – Some ambulances in the city of Detroit have been used for so long that they have more than 250,000 miles on them.
5 – 210 of the 317 public parks in the city of Detroit have been permanently closed down.
6 – According to the New York Times, there are now approximately 70,000 abandoned buildings in Detroit.
7 – Approximately one-third of Detroit’s 140 square miles is either vacant or derelict.
8 – Less than half of the residents of Detroit over the age of 16 are working at this point.
9 – If you can believe it, 60 percent of all children in the city of Detroit are living in poverty.
10 – According to one very shocking report, 47 percent of the residents of Detroit are functionally illiterate.
11 – Today, police solve less than 10 percent of the crimes that are committed in Detroit.
12 – Ten years ago, there were approximately 5,000 police officers in the city of Detroit. Today, there are only about 2,500 and another 100 are scheduled to be eliminated from the force soon.
13 – Due to budget cutbacks, most police stations in Detroit are now closed to the public for 16 hours a day.
14 – The murder rate in Detroit is 11 times higher than it is in New York City.
15 – Crime has gotten so bad in Detroit that even the police are telling people to “enter Detroit at your own risk“.
16 – Right now, the city of Detroit is facing $20 billion in debt and unfunded liabilities. That breaks down to more than $25,000 per resident.
As Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr noted last week, it took a very long time for Detroit to get into this condition…
“What the average Detroiter needs to understand is that where we are right now is a culmination of years and years and years of kicking the can down the road,” said Orr, adding that his proposal should not be seen as a “hostile act” but as a step in the right direction.
Does that sound familiar?
U.S. politicians have also been kicking the can down the road for “years and years and years”.
But eventually you can’t kick the can down the road anymore.
Sometimes it is helpful to step back and look at what we have done to ourselves over the past several decades.
For example, back in 1980 the U.S. national debt was less than one trillion dollars. Today, it is rapidly approaching 17 trillion dollars.
And our debt binge has greatly accelerated under Barack Obama.
During Barack Obama’s first term, the federal government accumulated more debt than it did under the first 42 U.S presidents combined.
Isn’t that insane?
In fact, if you started paying off just the new debt that the U.S. has accumulated during the Obama administration at the rate of one dollar per second, it would take more than 184,000 years to pay it off.
The following are a lot more facts about our exploding national debt from one of my previous articles entitled “55 Facts About The Debt And U.S. Government Finances That Every American Voter Should Know“…
#1 While Barack Obama has been president, the U.S. government has spent about 11 dollars for every 7 dollars of revenue that it has actually brought in.
#2 During the fiscal year that just ended, the U.S. government took in 2.449 trillion dollars but it spent 3.538 trillion dollars.
#3 During fiscal year 2011, over a trillion dollars of government money was spent on 83 different welfare programs, and those numbers do not even include Social Security or Medicare.
#4 Over the past four years, welfare spending has increased by 32 percent. In inflation-adjusted dollars, spending on those programs has risen by 378 percent over the past 30 years. At this point, more than 100 million Americans are enrolled in at least one welfare program run by the federal government. Once again, these figures do not even include Social Security or Medicare.
#5 Over the past year, the number of Americans getting a free cell phone from the federal government has grown by 43 percent. Now more than 16 million Americans are enjoying what has come to be known as an “Obamaphone”.
#6 When Barack Obama first entered the White House, about 32 million Americans were on food stamps. Now, 47 million Americans are on food stamps. And this has happened during what Obama refers to as “an economic recovery”.
#7 The U.S. government recently spent 27 million dollars on pottery classes in Morocco.
#8 The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently spent $300,000 to encourage Americans to eat caviar at a time when more families than ever are having a really hard time just trying to put any food on the table at all.
#9 During 2012, the National Science Foundation spent $516,000 to support the creation of a video game called “Prom Week”, which apparently simulates “all the social interactions of the event.”
#10 The U.S. Department of Agriculture gave the largest snack food maker in the world (PepsiCo Inc.) a total of 1.3 million dollars in corporate welfare that was used to help build “a Greek yogurt factory in New York.”
#11 The National Science Foundation recently gave researchers at Purdue University $350,000. They used part of that money to help fund a study that discovered that if golfers imagine that a hole is bigger it will help them with their putting.
#12 If you can believe it, $10,000 from the federal government was actually used to purchase talking urinal cakes up in Michigan.
#13 The National Science Foundation recently gave a whopping $697,177 to a New York City-based theater company to produce a musical about climate change.
#14 The National Institutes of Health recently gave $666,905 to a group of researchers that is studying the benefits of watching reruns on television.
#15 The National Science Foundation has given 1.2 million dollars to a team of “scientists” that is spending part of that money on a study that is seeking to determine whether elderly Americans would benefit from playing World of Warcraft or not.
#16 The National Institutes of Health recently gave $548,731 to a team of researchers that concluded that those that drink heavily in their thirties also tend to feel more immature.
#17 The National Science Foundation recently spent $30,000 on a study to determine if “gaydar” actually exists. This is the conclusion that the researchers reached at the end of the study…
“Gaydar is indeed real and… its accuracy is driven by sensitivity to individual facial features”
#18 Back in 2011, the National Institutes of Health spent $592,527 on a study that sought to figure out once and for all why chimpanzees throw poop.
#19 The U.S. government spends more on the military than China, Russia, Japan, India, and the rest of NATO combined. In fact, the United States accounts for 41.0% of all military spending on the planet. China is next with only 8.2%.
#20 In a previous article, I noted that close to 500,000 federal employees now make at least $100,000 a year.
#21 In 2006, only 12 percent of all federal workers made $100,000 or more per year. Now, approximately 22 percent of all federal workers do.
#22 If you can believe it, there are 77,000 federal workers that make more than the governors of their own states do.
#23 During 2010, the average federal employee in the Washington D.C. area received total compensation worth more than $126,000.
#24 The U.S. Department of Defense had just nine civilians earning $170,000 or more back in 2005. When Barack Obama became president, the U.S. Department of Defense had 214 civilians earning $170,000 or more. By June 2010, the U.S. Department of Defense had 994 civilians earning $170,000 or more.
#25 During 2010, compensation for federal employees came to a grand total of approximately 447 billion dollars.
#26 If you can believe it, close to 15,000 retired federal employees are currently collecting federal pensions for life worth at least $100,000 annually. That list includes such names as Newt Gingrich, Bob Dole, Trent Lott, Dick Gephardt and Dick Cheney.
#27 During 2010, the federal government spent $33,387 on the hair care needs of U.S. Senators.
#28 During 2010, U.S. Senators pulled $72,370 out of the “Senate Restaurant Fund”.
#29 During 2010, an average of $4,005,900 of U.S. taxpayer money was spent on “personal” and “office” expenses per Senator.
#30 In 2013, 3.7 million dollars will be spent to support the lavish lifestyles of former presidents such as George W. Bush and Bill Clinton.
#31 During 2011, the federal government spent a total of 1.4 BILLION dollars just on the Obamas.
#32 When you combine all federal government spending, all state government spending and all local government spending, it comes to approximately 41 percent of U.S. GDP. But don’t worry, all of our politicians insist that this is not socialism.
#33 As I have written about previously, less than 30 percent of all Americans lived in a home where at least one person received financial assistance from the federal government back in 1983. Today, that number is sitting at an all-time high of 49 percent.
#34 Back in 1990, the federal government accounted for just 32 percent of all health care spending in America. This year, it is being projected that the federal government will account for more than 50 percent of all health care spending in the United States.
#35 The number of Americans on Medicaid soared from 34 million in 2000 to 54 million in 2011, and it is being projected that Obamacare will add 16 million more Americans to the Medicaid rolls.
#36 In one of my previous articles, I discussed how it is being projected that the number of Americans on Medicare will grow from 50.7 million in 2012 to 73.2 million in 2025.
#37 If you can believe it, Medicare is facing unfunded liabilities of more than 38 trillion dollars over the next 75 years. That comes to approximately $328,404 for each and every household in the United States.
#38 In the United States today, more than 61 million Americans receive some form of Social Security benefits. By 2035, that number is projected to soar to a whopping 91 million.
#39 Overall, the Social Security system is facing a 134 trillion dollar shortfall over the next 75 years.
#40 When Barack Obama first took office, the U.S. national debt was about 10.6 trillion dollars. Now it is about 16.7 trillion dollars. That is an increase of 6.1 trillion dollars in a little more than 4 years.
#41 The federal government has now run a budget deficit of more than a trillion dollars for four years in a row.
#42 If right this moment you went out and started spending one dollar every single second, it would take you more than 31,000 years to spend one trillion dollars.
#43 If you were alive when Jesus Christ was born and you spent one million dollars every single day since that point, you still would not have spent one trillion dollars by now.
#44 Some suggest that “taxing the rich” is the answer. Well, if Bill Gates gave every single penny of his entire fortune to the U.S. government, it would only cover the U.S. budget deficit for 15 days.
#45 If the federal government used GAAP accounting standards like publicly traded corporations do, the real federal budget deficit for 2011 would have been 5 trillion dollars instead of 1.3 trillion dollars.
#46 The United States already has more government debt per capita than Greece, Portugal, Italy, Ireland or Spain does.
#47 At this point, the United States government is responsible for more than a third of all the government debt in the entire world.
#48 The amount of U.S. government debt held by foreigners is about 5 times larger than it was just a decade ago.
#49 Between 2007 and 2010, U.S. GDP grew by only 4.26%, but the U.S. national debt soared by 61% during that same time period.
#50 The U.S. national debt is now more than 37 times larger than it was when Richard Nixon took us off the gold standard.
#51 The U.S. national debt is now more than 5000 times larger than it was when the Federal Reserve was first created.
#52 The U.S. national debt jumped more on the very first day of fiscal year 2013 than it did from 1776 to 1941 combined.
#53 Historically, the interest rate on 10 year U.S. Treasuries has averaged 6.68 percent. If the average interest rate on U.S. government debt rose to that level today, the U.S. government would find itself spending more than a trillion dollars per year just on interest on the national debt.
#54 A recently revised IMF policy paper entitled “An Analysis of U.S. Fiscal and Generational Imbalances: Who Will Pay and How?” projects that U.S. government debt will rise to about 400 percent of GDP by the year 2050.
#55 Boston University economist Laurence Kotlikoff is warning that the U.S. government is facing a gigantic tsunami of unfunded liabilities in the coming years that we are counting on our children and our grandchildren to pay. Kotlikoff speaks of a “fiscal gap” which he defines as “the present value difference between projected future spending and revenue”. His calculations have led him to the conclusion that the federal government is facing a fiscal gap of 222 trillion dollars in the years ahead.
Please share this article with as many people as you can. We are in the process of committing national financial suicide and time is rapidly running out to do anything about it.
Just like Detroit, a day is rapidly approaching when America will not be able to kick the can down the road anymore.
Sadly, our politicians don’t seem inclined to do anything about it and most of the population seems to think that our exploding national debt is not a significant problem.
By the time it becomes clear how wrong they were, it will be far too late to do anything about it.
If you want to know what the future of America is going to be like, just look at the city of Detroit. Once upon a time it was a symbol of everything that America was doing right, but today it has been transformed into a rotting, decaying, post-apocalyptic hellhole. Detroit was once the fourth-largest city in the United States, and in 1960 Detroit had the highest per-capita income in the entire nation. It was the greatest manufacturing city the world had ever seen, and the rest of the globe looked at Detroit with a sense of awe and wonder. But now the city of Detroit has become a bad joke to the rest of the world. Unemployment is rampant, 60 percent of the children are living in poverty and the city government is on the verge of bankruptcy. They say that Detroit is just a matter of “weeks or months” away from running out of cash, and when Detroit does declare bankruptcy it will be the largest municipal bankruptcy in the history of the United States. But don’t look down on Detroit, because the truth is that Detroit is really a metaphor for what is happening to America as a whole. In the United States today, our manufacturing infrastructure has been gutted, poverty is absolutely exploding and we are rapidly approaching national bankruptcy. Detroit may have gotten there first, but the rest of the country will follow soon enough.
Back during the boom years, Detroit was known for making great cars. Today, it is known for scenes of desolation and decay. It is full of vandalized homes, abandoned schools and empty factories. The following description of what Detroit looks like at this point is from an article by Barry Yeoman…
It’s hard to describe the city’s physical landscape without producing what Detroiters call “ruin porn.” Brick houses with bays and turrets sit windowless or boarded up. Whole blocks, even clusters of blocks, have been bulldozed. Retail strips have been reduced to a dollar store here, a storefront church there, and a whole lot of plywood in between. Not a single chain supermarket remains.
So what caused the downfall of one of the greatest cities on earth?
Well, here is a hint…
Between December 2000 and December 2010, 48 percent of the manufacturing jobs in Michigan were lost.
When you are a manufacturing area, and you lose half of your manufacturing jobs over the course of a single decade, of course things are going to get really, really bad.
So just how bad have things gotten in Detroit?
The following are 24 facts about the city of Detroit that will shock you…
#1 Detroit was once the fourth-largest city in the United States, and it was once home to close to 2 million people. But over the last several decades people have been fleeing in droves. According to the 2010 census, only 713,000 people now live in Detroit, and city officials admit that the population has probably slipped under 700,000 at this point.
#2 The population of Detroit has declined by about 25 percent over the past decade. The last time the population of Detroit was this low was all the way back in 1910.
#3 Today, Detroit is only the 18th-largest city in America. It is now smaller than Austin, Texas and Charlotte, North Carolina.
#4 Back in 1960, the city of Detroit had the highest per-capita income in the United States.
#5 Today, the unemployment rate in Detroit is more than 18 percent, which is more than twice as high as the nation as a whole.
#6 According to a report that was just recently released, approximately 60 percent of all children in Detroit live in poverty.
#7 Approximately one-third of Detroit’s 140 square miles are either vacant or derelict.
#8 The city government of Detroit has closed dozens of schools and has decided to cut off public services to the “heavily blighted areas“.
#9 According to one estimate, there are 33,500 empty houses and 91,000 vacant residential lots in the city of Detroit today.
#10 The median price of a home in Detroit is just $9,000, and there are some areas of Detroit where you can still buy a house for $100.
#11 There are more than 85,000 streetlights in Detroit, but thieves have stripped so much copper wiring out of the lights that more than half of them are not working.
#12 Mayor Bing has announced a plan to reduce the number of streetlights in the city of Detroit to just 46,000.
#13 According to one very shocking report, 47 percent of all people living in the city of Detroit are functionally illiterate at this point..
#14 The murder rate in Detroit is 11 times higher than it is in New York City.
#15 There were 377 homicides in Detroit in 2011. In 2012, that number rose to 411.
#16 Justifiable homicide in Detroit rose by an astounding 79 percent during 2011.
#17 In one recent year, the rate of self-defense killings in the city of Detroit was 2200% above the national average.
#18 Ten years ago, there were approximately 5,000 police officers in the city of Detroit. Today, there are only about 2,500 and another 100 are scheduled to be eliminated from the force soon.
#19 Due to budget cutbacks, most police stations in Detroit are now closed to the public for 16 hours a day.
#20 Crime has gotten so bad in Detroit that even the police are are telling people to “enter Detroit at your own risk“.
#21 At one point, 100 bus drivers in Detroit refused to drive their routes because they were afraid of being attacked out on the streets in broad daylight. The head of the bus drivers union, Henry Gaffney, said that the drivers were literally “scared for their lives“….
“Our drivers are scared, they’re scared for their lives. This has been an ongoing situation about security. I think yesterday kind of just topped it off, when one of my drivers was beat up by some teenagers down in the middle of Rosa Parks and it took the police almost 30 minutes to get there, in downtown Detroit,” said Gaffney.
#22 There have been reports that gangs of young men with AK-47s have been terrorizing gas stations all over Detroit.
#23 Detroit was once known for making some of the greatest cars in the world. Now, it is known around the world as a dumping ground for the dead…
From the street, the two decomposing bodies were nearly invisible, concealed in an overgrown lot alongside worn-out car tires and a moldy sofa. The teenagers had been shot, stripped to their underwear and left on a deserted block.
They were just the latest victims of foul play whose remains went undiscovered for days after being hidden deep inside Detroit’s vast urban wilderness — a crumbling wasteland rarely visited by outsiders and infrequently patrolled by police.
#24 Detroit’s public schools are an absolute nightmare. The following is from one of my readers that actually attended one of the “best” public schools in Detroit…
The school was a new seven story building just a couple of years old. The bathrooms would often lack toilet paper & soap beyond the second floor (the main floor), the bathroom sinks would often not work. The water fountains on north side of the building on from the third floor & up did not work. The elevators would constantly break down. I even got stuck on the elevator before. I almost tripped down a half a flight of stairs because the elastic seal (it was the metal bar at the front of a treader of I don’t know the name of it.) the stairs was not properly installed.
Students would often have sex on the stairs & throughout the school. Parents actually called the school many times & reported kids having sex on the stairs because all of them had glass windows 270 degrees.
Even over in Europe they write stories about the dramatic decline of Detroit. For example, the following is how one British reporter described his visit to Detroit…
Much of Detroit is horribly dangerous for its own residents, who in many cases only stay because they have nowhere else to go. Property crime is double the American average, violent crime triple. The isolated, peeling homes, the flooded roads, the clunky, rusted old cars and the neglected front yards amid trees and groin-high grassland make you think you are in rural Alabama, not in one of the greatest industrial cities that ever existed.
For those that want to read even more about the horrifying downfall of Detroit, there are some amazing charts that graphically show the decline of Detroit right here.
So what is the solution?
How can we fix Detroit?
Well, why don’t we just build a monorail! Of course that sounds ridiculous, but the federal government has actually committed $25 million to construct “a streetcar line” that nobody really wants and that very few people would probably actually use. Perhaps they could be excused for wasting so much money on a bad idea if there had not already been 24 failed attempts to develop a successful public transit system in Detroit over the past four decades.
Well, why don’t we just build a bunch of theme parks instead? After all, tourists would just flock to Detroit, right?
It has been suggested that Detroit would be ideal for an “automotive theme park”, and there is actually one group of investors that wants to turn some of the worst areas of Detroit into a “zombie theme park”.
What will they think of next?
Actually, a much better idea would have been to not allow millions of our good paying manufacturing jobs to be shipped to the other side of the world, but it is too late for that at this point.
But once again, please do not look down on the city of Detroit. Instead, let the city of Detroit serve as a warning for the rest of us.
The truth is that the entire U.S. economy is in an advanced state of decline…
-The percentage of the civilian labor force in the United States that is employed has been steadily declining every single year since 2006.
-An astounding 53 percent of all American workers make less than $30,000 a year.
-Amazingly, there are hundreds of thousands of Americans with either Master’s degrees or Ph.D.s that are enrolled in the food stamp program at this point.
We are a nation that consumes far more wealth than we produce, we are a nation that is constantly bleeding jobs, businesses and wealth, and we are a nation that is going deeper into debt with each passing day.
Yes, Detroit may have gone over the edge into economic oblivion first, but the rest of the nation is steamrolling down the exact same path that Detroit has gone.
Is it too late for us to change direction?
Please feel free to share your thoughts on that question by leaving a comment below…