The current national debt is not an immediate problem, said Michael Lyons, USU political science professor, Tuesday night in the auditorium of the TSC.According to usdebtclock.org, the national debt is above $14 trillion and a little over $127,000 per taxpayer. The debt problem isn’t urgent but it’s getting worse, Lyons said.Lyons spoke prior to the documentary screening of I.O.U.S.A which was hosted by the College Democrats and College RepublicansLyons said there are a lot of misconceptions about the national deficit and debt in America. He said Republicans like to blame Democrats and social spending programs for the debt, but Democrats like to blame George W. Bush and the two wars for the debt.The real problems and causes of the debt are more a matter of structure, Lyons said.”We’ve always had deficit spending,” Lyons said. “Our nation was born in debt.”Lyons said two senators for each state and representatives for congressional districts creates “very perverse spending incentives.”Tax money goes into a pot, then states get the money with no relation to how much money they contributed to the pot, Lyons said.”The incentives are to take as much money out of the central pot as you possibly can for your district or state because somebody, somewhere else, is paying most of the bill,” Lyons said.The other problem deals with two-year election cycles, which don’t exist anywhere else in the industrialized world.
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