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Trillions I Say

I hate to talk bailouts all the time. But the feds keep throwing more misallocated trillions at the problem.

What problem? Oh, you know — the predictable consequences of all the previously misallocated trillions.

We keep hearing about fresh piles of governmental largesse being devoted to making our troubles as long-lasting and burdensome as possible. Of course, the central planners in D.C. don't admit the necessary effects of their wastrel social-engineering ways. They would rather call it, say, “investing,” or “economic stimulus.”

Economist Henry Hazlitt pointed out that government spending does nothing to “stimulate” the economy. It merely directs “labor and capital into the production of less necessary goods or services at the expense of more necessary goods or services.”

What politicians are really doing is buying votes, keeping themselves in office longer . . . while the bad times roll.

Our calculations of red ink should consider not only the federal debt on the books, which is now more than $10 trillion, but also the unfunded liability for Social Security and other programs. Adding all that, we get something like $70 trillion or more we're on the hook for.

I did some quick math. A stack of 70 trillion one dollar bills would be close to 48 million miles high. More than half the average distance between the earth and the sun.

Just thought I'd mention it.

This is Common Sense. I'm Paul Jacob.

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Paul Jacob is President of Citizens in Charge and the Citizens in Charge Foundation, which sponsors both Common Sense and Paul's weekly Townhall Column. The opinions expressed in Common Sense are Paul Jacob's and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Citizens in Charge or the Citizens in Charge Foundation.


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