Sunday, March 04, 2007

And the future is...not so pretty

Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, who made his fortune on Wall Street and another one when he left it (an , says the American economy is great and despite last week's big stock market dump, we should all just quit worrying. Yeah, a guy who pulled down an $18.7 million bonus after a year-and-a-half running Goldman Sachs probably does have a sunny outlook on life.

For the rest of us, the outlook ain't so grand.

From the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities:

The nation’s budget policies are unsustainable. Our projections show that if current budget policies are continued (e.g., if current laws governing Medicare, Social Security, and other programs remain unchanged, the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts are made permanent, and relief from the Alternative Minimum Tax is continued), deficits will reach about 20 percent of the Gross Domestic Product by 2050, and the national debt will climb to 231 percent of GDP by that year, or more than twice the size of the U.S. economy. Debt-to-GDP ratios in this range are unprecedented in the United States, even during major wars.

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