Reading that the new debt limit coming out of the "debt reduction deal" is $16.8 trillion, I got my pen out and jotted down some numbers:
2nd Quarter 2011 GDP: $15.00 trillion/yr.
Current national debt: $14.3 trillion
(self-cancelling) internal debt: $4.6 trillion
Net debt: $9.7 trillion
65% of GDP
Of the $4.6 trillion in internal debt, about $2.6 trillion is the Social Security 'trust fund' (which is 'invested in' U.S. treasury bonds) and about $0.3 trillion is the Medicare 'trust fund.' There are lots of other 'trust funds' beyond these (e.g., the Highway 'fund') The thing all of these trust funds have in common is that their balances are falling.
If I assume that the rate of deficit spending is about $1.6 or $1.7 trillion/yr., we'll reach the new $16.8 trillion debt limit right around inauguration day, January 20, 2013. If the economy grows at about 2%/yr. between now and inauguration day (assuming no new recession), it will be operating at $15.45 trillion/yr.
That means the debt to GDP ratio will have deteriorated dramatically:
1st Quarter 2013 GDP: $15.45 trillion/yr.
Current national debt: $16.8 trillion
(self-cancelling) internal debt: $4.4 trillion
Net debt: $12.4 trillion
80% of GDP
Only in Washington could a plan to increase the national debt from 65% to 80% of GDP in less than a year and a half be called a "debt reduction" deal.
And for the RINO leadership -- who are today leaders because of the resurgent conservative movement -- to negotiate with themselves when confronted with deficits that are well nigh insurmountable... well, it points to one thing:
We need new leadership in the House and the Senate.
How does the combination of Speaker Allen West and Senate Majority Leader Marco Rubio sound to you?