Congress seems not to understand this. There is going to be a political crisis when the government begins cutting of the special-interest group most responsible for this deficit: retired people.
This 6-minute video proves that it is oldsters who are breaking the federal government's bank. It presents the official government numbers in a clear fashion. It shows what a well-designed screencast video can do. It has been seen by 2.6 million people. If you are impressed, forward this page to a friend.
What we see here is the tip of the famous iceberg. The video deals with the so-called on-budget debt. It does not assess the impact of the off-budget deficit: the unfunded liabilities of Social Security and Medicare. Prof. Lawrence Kotlikoff of Boston University has estimated the annual deficit of this budget -- the real deficit -- is rising by at least $11 trillion a year. Worse: this is the present value of the annual increase in unfunded liabilities -- what we must set aside today to invest in the world economy, and which will earn 5% or so for the next 75 years. The total deficit is now over $222 trillion: present value, not future red ink. The story is here.