The 10 biggest reasons we're in debt

Despite recent belt-tightening, US consumers still owe plenty. Here are the top sources of personal debt, and how such borrowing affects your finances and the economy.

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May 13, 2013 8:52PM
Another article on debt that ignores the national debt and annual budget deficit.

National debt is $16.8 trillion and growing. A "temporary" lifting of the debt ceiling allows the national debt to grow without limit. Will the U.S. Congress and President keep authorizing "temporary" liftings of the debt ceiling until it becomes de facto permanent?

What about unfunded liabilities of the U.S. Government? They amount to $100 to $222 trillion, but because the U.S. Governement does not follow Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) that every business has to follow, no one knows about the huge problem of unfunded liabilities. Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and foreign wars make up a large amount of this.

Annual budget deficit is typically $1.1 to $1.3 trillion per year out of a $3.5 trillion budget (and growing).

$802 billion for Medicare and Medicaid
$768 billion for Social Security
$670 billion for Defense
$615 billion for "discretionary" government programs
$461 billion for other "mandatory" government programs
$223 billion for interest on the national debt

Families get into financial trouble when they spend too much.
So do countries, even big and prosperous countries like the United States of America.

May 13, 2013 8:23PM
I would rather pick $hit with the chickens than be in debt.
May 13, 2013 8:14PM
The debtor is a slave to the lender.
May 13, 2013 8:13PM
I think that this news is not news, but propaganda to make people think about signing up for loans.  Well the problem is that the people in Washington, all of them, are so far from connected with the real world that they would happily sell the country to China, oh wait Bush sold some already, to get ahead. 
May 13, 2013 7:54PM
It is interesting to me the only two debts that are "estimated" are medical and "gambling."  Gambling would be kept quiet, I think, and medical is probably due to the fact that it rises so fast nobody can count it.  The one reason, in my opinion, we are in debt is CONgress!!! If we could keep most of what we make, we wouldn't have to borrow nearly as much money.  And, yet I notice it says "taxex owed to CONgress...."  Why don't they state that more accurately as "money extorted by CONgress?"  CONgress could control medical expenses, but they don't.  It is a racket.  Even as I type this, I am hearing "tell your doctor", "ask your doctor" and want to yell.  If I have to "ask my doctor" I need a new doctor!!!  I wish I could get a new CONgress as easily as a new doctor.
May 13, 2013 7:50PM
A very wise man taught me that it isn't always how much you have, it's what you do with it that counts. Even tho we saved and scrimped and put $$ into the IRA's, paid off our mortgage and cc bills, saved and paid 2 years of college for each of the 4 kids (paid not borrowed, then they were on their own), managed to be live very modest retirement lifestyle, what will do us under is the healthcare. We both worked 50+ years and they deducted for Medicare plus we paid for most of our employer's health plan. At 70-ish I still work part time and and they withhold for Medicare, plus we both pay a Medicare premium every month and our supplement is about $500 a month. On top of that we spent over $10K out of pocket last year on healthcare with medication co-pays deductibles dentist eyeglasses etc. So at this rate with the prices going up and health premiums going up but benefits going down, when we hit about 80 we will choose how we will die either freeze when we can't pay the heat, starve if we can;t pay groceries or die from not being able to afford the medications. Obamacare death panels have lots of between the line designs......
Jan 3, 2013 10:18AM

obamacare is like forcing a student loan debt on every person in America.  We know we have to pay it back but how we pay it back is uncertain due to the economy.

We didn't put ourselves in this pickle the politicians did.  Bad financial management.  They need to pay back the debt!

Jan 3, 2013 10:15AM
We the people did not make these debts, our elected representatives did.  So, our elected representatives should have to pay the bill and leave the rest of us alone.
Jan 3, 2013 9:24AM
debt what happens when the feds start raising interest rates.  government was not smart enough to lock in  on low  rates
Jan 2, 2013 11:19PM

The biggest debt is the one we didn't make.  The national debt.  Not one of us signed for this debt.  I think lawmakers should shoulder the blame for that.  They should be forced to sell whatever they have and pay on the debt.  Their bank accounts and any pensions should be seized and paid on the debt.  I do not think we should have to pay that.  We didn't sign for it.  Now,  the next sore issue is the medical debt.  When you go to a doctor, then to the legal drug lords you get more side effects, more docs, then more pills, more side effects, more docs...then hospital.  Get one scan and you get bills from ten other people you never heard of.  One did the scan, one read it in anohter town, one interpreted it, and one wiped his ash on it, one sent it back to doc, get bills from all of them!  I hope the Chinese foreclose on America and take over the operations of the whole country! Send idiot congress home!

Jan 2, 2013 11:02PM

Is there anyone who has read this article/slideshow, who knows the ins and outs of health insurance that can provide the answers to:

Is there a type of health insurance that covers everything?

Is it possible to cover everything?

How could the U.S. go about having better health care and health insurance for the future?

Is there any stock in wellness programs through your employer?


P.S. I'm thankful to everyone who did their part in paying down credit card debt.

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