While many Americans were out buying Christmas presents on "Black Friday," the U.S. national debt surpassed $18 trillion.
According to the official numbers released by the U.S. Treasury Department, at the end of the workday on Friday, the total national debt was $18,005,549,328,561.45
According to usdebtclock.org, which maintains a rolling estimate of the national debt based upon the official numbers released by the U.S. Treasury Department, the current debt amounts to $56,369 for each U.S. citizen, or $153,729 for each U.S. taxpayer. Current federal tax revenue is about $3.1 trillion. more >>
WASHINGTON — Christian leaders from virtually all denominations gathered in the nation's capital this week to bring attention to rampant financial damage among the poor as a result of predatory lenders.
The coalition met Wednesday morning at the Lutheran Church of the Reformation, mere blocks from Capitol Hill, before heading out to lobby Congress to add new usury restrictions and control lenders' ability to confuse potential borrowers through slick marketing.
Galen Carey, vice president of Government Relations at the National Association of Evangelicals, told The Christian Post he and his organization have "become very concerned" about how predatory lending is wreaking havoc among the poor and disadvantaged. more >>
This election, are you better or worse off than you were before President Obama took office?
CONSIDER HEALTHCARE. The Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare, was President Obama's single legislative accomplishment, passed solely by Democrats.
While the Republican Party is far from perfect, it is currently the political party that polls show most closely matches the core policy beliefs of values voters: evangelical, "born again" Christians and Catholics. According to pollster George Barna, there are 77 million "born again" evangelical and Catholic voters in the United States, but only about 30.6 million of them voted for Mitt Romney in 2012. Roughly 20 million voted for President Obama. The shocking number, however, is that 26 million values voters stayed home, not bothering to vote at all. The reasons cited are complicated and numerous: everything from discomfort with Mormonism to election apathy, to a distrust of the establishment.
As the 2014 midterm election approaches, disengaged values voters must understand that elections at every level of government have consequences. Look no further than Houston, Texas, where Mayor Annise Parker is trampling the constitutional rights of church pastors by attempting to force them to turn over their sermons on same-sex "marriage."
On the federal level, it was the conservative-leaning values voters' lack of participation at the polls that gave us Barack Obama. But there were 20 million values voters who did vote for the president. They, like the rest of America, bought into the president's promise of hope and change — only to find out that what they got was what most people of faith feared, a president who would flip flop on marriage, a president that would force taxpayers to pay for abortions, a president who would seem to turn a blind eye to Christian persecution worldwide as its branches of religious repression grow in our own country, and a president who's lack of support for our Judeo-Christian brothers and sisters in places like Israel would create a playground for terrorists worldwide. more >>
Social Security is unsustainable at its present level of benefits and taxes. To put Social Security on a sound footing, Congress will have to cut pension benefits or increase tax rates. Congress will not raise tax rates to pay for Social Security. Why not? The reason is simple.
If Congress raises tax rates to pay for Social Security benefits they have already promised, then it will be that much harder for them to increase tax rates to pay for other stuff they want to promise to do. It will be harder for Congress to increase tax rates to pay for that "green" company they want to subsidize; it will be harder to raise tax rates to pay for more defense spending or to increase spending for education special interests. No, Congress will not increase tax rates to pay for Social Security.
Congress will therefore cut Social Security benefits. more >>
It is hard to imagine now, but Detroit was once known to some as the Paris of the West. At its peak, it was one of America's largest cities, boasting a population of 2 million, spectacular architecture, a host of mansion-dwelling industrialists and a world-class art collection currently valued at over 4.6 billion dollars. Yet after decades of decline, the city that gave birth to Motown Records and Henry Ford's Model T filed for bankruptcy last July; it was the largest municipal bankruptcy case in American history.
The simplest explanation for Detroit's decline in both population—the city has lost about 1.3 million residents since the 1950s—and revenue is the American auto industry's inability to respond effectively to German and Japanese competition during the post-World War II era. The collapse of General Motors, Ford and Chrysler effectively broke the backbone of Detroit's economy. Motown has lost 90 percent of its manufacturing jobs, and nothing has replaced them.
Detroit has also had more than its fair share of social problems over the years—race riots, corrupt labor unions and the highest violent crime rate of any major American city. But at the heart of the city's record setting 18.5 billion dollar debt is its government, which owes at least 9 billion in unfunded healthcare and pension liabilities. more >>