How would you pay off the national debt?

by Mary Ann McGivern

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How would you end the deficit and pay off the debt?

Last November, when the government budget issues were only simmering, The New York Times published an interactive graph that allows us, the readers, to fix the budget -- both ending the annual deficit and paying off the long-term debt.

It’s a great graph and the Times has maintained the link. You choose a solution and you see on the graph exactly how effective your remedy is. Then you can read how the editors designed it and what choices the readers have been making. The process takes about ten minutes.

The Times choices are limited. But they teach us that it is not so difficult to end the deficit and pay off the debt. What is difficult is to bridge political differences about increasing taxes and making cuts. The chart illustrates the deep divides in the United States about what we want to pay for and who we think should pay.

Here’s the link.

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