As the next congressional showdown over the debt ceiling approaches, the whirlwind of Beltway discussions will once again tilt toward U.S. debt and deficits. Countless organizations in Washington, D.C., analyze and comment on federal deficits and debt. Many emanate from octogenarian billionaire Pete Peterson, who funds several debt-hysteria groups such as the Concord Coalition, Fix the Debt and the more recent, youth-oriented The Can Kicks Back.
Nearly all of these groups and commentators are dead wrong. Simply put, the U.S. government is the monopoly issuer of the dollar. The U.S. government is no longer on a gold standard, and thus has the ability to issue currency in unlimited amounts and pay all its debts.
Santopietro, a Blacksburg native, is a graduate student in the George Washington University Legislative Affairs program and a blogger at “All Wonks of Life.”