Tag Archives | national debt

Piketty on National Debt: “Germany has never repaid.”

Via Daily Kos:

In a blistering interview with the German newspaper Die Zeit, Piketty [the famed French economist and author of the best-seller, Capital in the Twenty‑First Century] blasts Germany and it’s history of repayment of debt over the years, and it’s attitudes toward its fellow EU neighbor, Greece. In brief, he tells the interviewer in no uncertain terms that Germany never repaid their loans; yet they hold others to a higher standard of responsibility.

ZEIT: But shouldn’t they repay their debts?

Piketty: My book recounts the history of income and wealth, including that of nations. What struck me while I was writing is that Germany is really the single best example of a country that, throughout its history, has never repaid its external debt. Neither after the First nor the Second World War. However, it has frequently made other nations pay up, such as after the Franco-Prussian War of 1870, when it demanded massive reparations from France and indeed received them.

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Seven Big Economic Lies

Do tax cuts for the rich trickle down to the rest of us? And does taxing the rich hurt the economy? Is Social security a Ponzi scheme? Robert Reich, Secretary of Labor under President Bill Clinton, presents his list of seven popular-wisdom economic claims that are untrue. Feel free to debate.
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20 Economic Weapons Of Mass Destruction That Could Trigger Global Debt Time Bomb

Paul B. Farrell sounds the alarm for the day of reckoning that all of us debtors know is coming, in Marketwatch:
Retire? You can fuggetaboutit if the new Global Debt Time Bomb is detonated by any one of 20 made-in-America trigger mechanisms. Yes, 20. And yes, any one can destroy your retirement because all 20 are inexorably linked, a house-of-cards, a circular firing squad destined to self-destruct, triggering the third great Wall Street meltdown of the 21st century, igniting the Great Depression II that George W. Bush, Ben Bernanke, Henry Paulson and now President Obama have simply delayed with their endless knee-jerk, debt-laden wars, stimulus bonanzas and bailouts. Wow, what an epic Hollywood blockbuster this will make: You know the drama, can't miss the warnings. The financial press is flooding us with plot lines ... a Forbes cover story focuses on a "Global Debt Bomb: How It Could Wreck Your Life" ... Leaders at the World Economic Forum on Swiss Mt. Davos fear another global meltdown will trigger mass rebellions ... The Economist calls the plot a "Global Asset Bubble," with cheap money fast driving up asset prices...
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U.S. National Debt Tops Debt Limit

Mark Knoller writes at CBSNews.com:

The latest calculation of the National Debt as posted by the Treasury Department has – at least numerically – exceeded the statutory Debt Limit approved by Congress last February as part of the Recovery Act stimulus bill.

The ceiling was set at $12.104 trillion dollars. The latest posting by Treasury shows the National Debt at nearly $12.135 trillion.

A senior Treasury official told CBS News that the department has some “extraordinary accounting tools” it can use to give the government breathing room in the range of $150-billion when the Debt exceeds the Debt Ceiling.

Were it not for those “tools,” the U.S. Government would not have the statutory authority to borrow any more money. It might block issuance of Social Security checks and require a shutdown of some parts of the federal government…

[continues at CBSNews.com]

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