National debt reaches $30 trillion thanks to ever-expanding government

By Matthew Dickerson and Joshua Loucks | The Daily Signal

The Treasury Department announced Tuesday that the total national debt had surpassed $30 trillion for the first time.

Just two years ago, the Congressional Budget Office projected that the nation would not reach this mark until the end of 2025.

Wikimedia Commons/Public domain

This dramatic increase in deficit spending is fueled by massive spending packages that both Congress and the White House cannot seem to get enough of. But even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic and President Joe Biden’s reckless spending spree, the federal budget was growing unsustainably.

Thanks to our ever-expanding federal government, we reached the $30 trillion mark nearly four years earlier. Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the government has added an unprecedented level of spending, resulting in $7 trillion more in debt.

In fiscal year 2019, the annual budget deficit was equal to 4.6% of gross domestic product, a level nearly twice the historical average. The Congressional Budget Office projected a steady rise to around 5.4% of GDP by 2030.

After a massive increase in spending, the federal government managed to blow past these projections to a budget deficit of $2.8 trillion, equal to 12.4% of GDP in fiscal year 2021.

This dramatic increase in deficit spending is fueled by massive spending packages that both Congress and the White House cannot seem to get enough of. But even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic and President Joe Biden’s reckless spending spree, the federal budget was growing unsustainably.

The government has expanded significantly beyond its constitutionally intended scope of power. The only hope to fix our spending and debt problems is to return the government to its proper roles.

The consequences of overspending will not be trivial. Over the next 30 years, interest payments are projected to total more than $60 trillion, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

Never in the nation’s history has net interest spending as a percentage of revenue totaled more than 19%. By 2035, net interest spending as a percentage of revenue is expected to exceed 20%; by 2050, it is expected to grow to 45%.

These projections are not even the worst-case scenario, since they include interest rates below historical averages. If we saw interest rates return to historical averages or even above the projected 4.6%, the effects would be even more damaging.

If interest rates are one percentage point higher each year than expected, it could add another $2.4 trillion to budget deficits over the next decade.

Should policymakers continue their spending spree, the situation only will worsen. Projections show that at current rates of spending, the national debt would reach upward of 300% of GDP within three decades.

More important than budgetary impact are the real human effects of a government that spends and taxes too much, threatening the freedom and prosperity of Americans. Fiscal irresponsibility threatens economic opportunityand makes it harder to achieve the American dream.

Despite the record levels of debt already on the books, Biden and congressional liberals are pushing for even more spending, which could contribute to even higher inflation.

Lawmakers should reject efforts to revive the big-government socialist Build Back Better Act or irresponsible omnibus appropriations bills filled with reckless spending and controversial policies.

At the end of the day, the only way we can address the debt problem is to shrink annual spending and significantly shrink the size of the federal government.

The Constitution never intended for government to be this pervasive in the lives of Americans.

We’re witnessing overspending that is an inevitable symptom of an overextended government. By reforming and eliminating programs and activities that never were intended to be done by the government in the first place, we can start to address the debt crisis.

Reforming major programs such as Social Security and Medicare not only would go a long way in solving the debt problem, but also directly address the reality at the heart of most fiscal issues today: the size and scope of the federal government.

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons/Public domain

11 thoughts on “National debt reaches $30 trillion thanks to ever-expanding government

  1. There is no borrowing and no printing.

    The US government is in deficit-spending mode.
    Government programs cost more than advertised.


    Assume the deficit is $1 trillion in any given year

    The US Federal Reserve Bank DECLARES it has $1 trillion, and gives it to the federal government, so it can continue spending
    The federal government gives an IOU to the Federal Bank.
    No new US bonds are issued, because the amounts would far exceed any demand by investors.

    That is how the US national debt is financed, during war and peace time, almost all $30 TRILLION OF IT.



    • The Democrats taking over the federal government in 2020, and the out-of-control spending, has and will cause huge damage to the US, from which it will be difficult to recover

      A good example of damage is the outrageous, country-destroying, “just walk-in, anybody-from-anywhere-is-welcome” southern border, to purposely change the demographics of the US in favor of Dem/Progs

      The electricity black-out problem Texas experienced, due to a cold spell a year ago, lasting just a few days, compared to FOUR years of open borders, is like a mouse to an elephant.

      It is absolutely imperative to vote these incompetent, socialistic, communistic, un-American imposters out of office in November 2022

      We have to:

      1) Turn out EN MASSE, to offset any and all election shenanigans, perpetrated by desperate Democrats, to hold on to power, plus

      2) Enough people must turn out to witness and record, on audio/video, any and all suspicious election events, AROUND THE CLOCK; give them no breathing space.

      We have to:

      1) Ban ballot drop boxes to reduce fraud opportunities

      2) Ban universal mail-in voting to reduce fraud opportunities

      3) Sanitize the registered voter lists, to eliminate counting votes of people who: 1) are dead, 2) who never existed, 3) who moved out of state, 4) who are illegal, 5) who are underage, 6) who are convicted felons, 7) who are registered, but almost never vote. Just make up a whole lot of fictitious names. and vote them as well.

      4) Ban universal ballot harvesting by shady Dem/Prog operatives, at a cost of $10/ballot, and deposit the harvested ballots in unsupervised ballot drop boxes.

      “Elected” Democrats would be seated, before any entity could find out what happened to have a proper court case, several months later.x

      5) In Democrat-controlled cities “vote counting” is done primarily in Democrat-dominated vote counting centers, staffed by “trusted” Democrat operatives. We must insist, all “vote counting centers” be staffed with an equal number of Republican and Democrat vote counters and observers.

      These are the five most egregious election system flaws, that enabled the Democrats to get “elected” in 2020, and likely in prior elections as well.

      This THIRD WORLD sordidness has to end, before it will totally ruin the US

  2. National government, state government, local government, school districts….all continue to grow and spend more and more of our dollars on wasteful ridiculous programs and employees. All sucking off the taxpayer tit and will continue to grow and waste until the average joe starts saying no at the ballot box. March is coming, VOTE NO.

  3. Watching As a senior,
    our kids and grandkids are screwed
    by our generations greed to spend on

  4. Question: What does $30T look like?
    Answer: Every $1T is essentially a 6 foot stack of $100 bills spread over the square footage of a football field.

    So, $30T is essentially an18 story pile of $100 bills covering a football field.

    You can add another $1T of total state debt to the national debt so that is another $6 feet. States are feeling flush because we are using the National Credit card to pay off the State Credit card so that number will likely continue to go up. In most financial circles paying off one credit card with another is know as a Ponzi scheme

    Go to National debt clock If you want some interesting U.S. and Vt Debt stats.

    Unfortunately, our un-unfunded liabilities SS. and Medicare are estimated at a number almost twice the actual outstanding national debt. Add another 35 plus stories…

    If you want to see where all this leads take a look at what happened in Greece during the 2008 Great Recession. A classic example of Politicians making promises (this time in the form of pensions) to super charge their reelection campaigns/political power.

    There is no such thing as Free Free Free, there is only more debt and higher inflation as a result of the current out of control spending, and guess what we are getting both.

    Don’t forget to Vote!

    • It also looks like this, $30,000,000,000,000.00. For those who failed at math,
      one Billion is 1,000 Million, one Trillion is 1,000 Million, 30 Trillion is 300,000
      Million and there’s nothing to back it up except the faith of the federal government. Does anyone believe that this will be repaid somehow? If the government can print worthless money we are already Venezuela.

      • correction One Trillion is 1,000 Billion, 30 Trillion is 300,000 Billion. I got lost in all the zeros and there’s no edit button, sorry.

        • Well said. Numbers like these are outside of reality for most people…almost imaginary. The effects, on the other hand, will most certainly be felt as a decrease in stability and a decrease in living standards for 99% of our children. Freedom will be a lost commodity.

          • Ahh, relativity.

            Put another way: $30 Trillion in $100 bills that weigh one gram each equals more than the weight of three (count them three) of the biggest aircraft carriers in the world – the USS Gerald R Ford (curiously the Whip Inflation Now President).

            If for example, you borrowed $1 Million and paid it back at the rate of $1 per second 24/7, it would take about 12 days to pay off the loan. But at that rate it would take nearly a million years to pay off $30 Trillion – not counting interest.

  5. Ronald Reagan and Donald Trump both said the government had grown too big. Joe Biden wants to make it bigger. About one out of fifteen American citizens is now, in some capacity, on a government payroll. How do the Progressives propose to ameliorate this? Defund the police.

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