Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Who Are The Holders Of The United States National Debt ?

There's been a lot of talk, especially among right-wingers, about the national debt -- which currently stands at about $19.9 trillion. Some of them would have you believe that China is our biggest debt-holder -- and we have, in essence, sold our country to the Chinese. That is not even remotely true.

In fact, China is not the biggest foreign holder of our national debt. They have $1.058 trillion, but finish second to Japan which holds $1.090 trillion. And neither of those countries is interested in tuning our economy. They want a strong dollar, because that makes the goods they sell in this country cheaper (and they can sell more of them).

Who is the biggest holder of the debt? It is the Social Security Trust Fund -- $2.801 trillion. Other government retirement funds hold a little over $1.8 trillion. This should give you a big clue as to why the Republicans are so interested in cutting Social Security benefits (and other retirement funds). If they cut them, then they can continue using them as their own personal piggy bank (instead of paying them back to be used by retirees). And that will let them give more tax breaks to the rich and the corporations.

Trump is claiming that his proposed massive tax cuts for the rich and corporations will spur the economy and result in more taxes being paid, and a lower national debt. That is ludicrous. That's the same faulty reasoning used by Reagan and Bush II when they cut taxes for the rich and corporations -- and all it did was balloon both the deficit and the national debt under both those administrations.

If you are really worried about the national debt, the way to lower it is to raise taxes. Make the rich and the corporations pay their fair share -- and remove corporate subsidies and tax loopholes so they actually have to pay taxes. Raising revenues by cutting taxes is just a conservative lie -- invented to justify giving more to the rich while putting a bigger burden of everyone else.

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