NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis


September 19, 2006

Washington's Enron-style accounting is now so widespread and so deeply ingrained, the nation could be bankrupt and not even know it, says investment writer Martin Weiss.

  • The official 2005 budget listed the U.S. federal deficit at $319 billion. 
  • But according to the Government Accountability Office (GAO), if the government followed the same generally accepted accounting principles it demands of corporations, the real 2005 deficit would have been $760 billion -- or more than double the official number.

And that's just one year of new debt the government has to take on to make ends meet.  If you take a look at the total debts and obligations the government has accumulated over the years, the picture gets much worse, says Weiss:

  • At the end of the first quarter, the total federal debt, including government agencies and government-sponsored enterprises, stood at $10.2 trillion.
  • But if you also include the estimated unfunded liabilities for Social Security, Medicare and other programs, the total federal debt is at least $54 trillion, based on three separate studies -- by the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), the National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA) and the Brookings Institution.

Source: Martin Weiss, "The Greatest Scam of All Time," Money and Markets, September 19, 2006.


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