Hiro Does the Math

I’m not sure you all will find it interesting, but that’s never stopped me before, has it? Anyway, Hiro got on one of his intellectual jags yesterday, and the result is a little piece on the United States national debt. Enjoy.

One Response to “Hiro Does the Math”

  1. a_stupid_box Says:

    I, for one, am impressed. Being an economics student myself, I understand how ambitious of a project this is for someone just to do on their own. We actually did the same for my econ class and came up with the same results, but again, that was as a class, so it just wasn’t as big a deal.

    Your understanding of the GDP and CPI are impressive. Did you look at the COLA figures for the years along with this (Cost of Living Allowance)? That may alleiviate some of your confusion as to the average level of wealth.

    Another fun thing to do is plop down points where major technological advancements were made. Telephone, computers, internet, polymers, plastics, airplanes, helicopters… stuff like that. The more lines/points in a graph, the more fun for the entire family!

    Also, unemployment per capita is something that most people don’t take into consideration. It doesn’t sound like it would matter, but that’s one of the “unifying” factors of Capitalism. Remember, optimal unemployment is 3.75 – 4.00% Anything more or less does more harm than good.

    Finally, about the national debt itself — it’s a good thing to have. We’re never going to pay it all off. If you’re into poli(tricks), then you know that the more money owed to a country = better relations. Why? Because they don’t want to risk not getting paid back. If someone owed you a few billion dollars, wouldn’t you want to keep on good terms and have constant contact with them?

    I’m a tad ashamed, because I can’t remember off the top of my head which economist/president said that a national debt is the best thing for a country to have as long as it helped productivity raise enough to cover the cost. Problem is that the debt accrues interest and productivity doesn’t. As was apparent, GDP increases at times of war; could this be part of “W”‘s plan? (well, his cronies, anyway).

    I, however, digress. Congratulations on the independant research — it’s people such as yourself whom reaffirm my belief that not ALL of humanity is doomed to self-destruction.

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