In an incredibly obvious statement, National Security Advisor John Bolton has declared the high level of national debt an “economic threat” to the United States. Unless you have been living under a rock for the past ten years, you know that statement is not only true but obvious.
Bolton claimed that the national debt is a big problem and tackling it requires significant cuts to the government’s discretionary spending, while most other economic experts say entitlement spending is the biggest concern. According to Bloomberg, Bolton was quoted as saying:
“It is a fact that when your national debt gets to the level ours is, that it constitutes an economic threat to the society. And that kind of threat ultimately has a national security consequence for it.”
Discretionary spending is set by Congress each year, while spending on entitlements is twice as large and more automatic, generally dictated by demand for the services. Many budget experts say entitlement spending presents a larger long-term threat to the U.S. economy because of both its magnitude and increasing demand from an aging population.
Bolton made his comments while speaking Wednesday at an event hosted by the Alexander Hamilton Society in Washington. He also said he expects the United States’ defense spending “to flatten out” in the near term and that even though entitlement spending is the bigger chunk of government expenditures, he didn’t anticipate major cuts to entitlements such as Medicare and Social Security.
“In the near term, the budget deficit problem is in the discretionary spending,” Bolton said.
“The entitlements come in a few years and that problem’s going to have to be addressed. But right now, you can have significant impact on both the deficit and the national debt by cutting government spending on the discretionary programs.”
The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office forecasts the budget gap will reach $973 billion in fiscal 2019 and exceed $1 trillion the next year. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. predicts the deficit will reach $1 trillion and $1.125 trillion respectively. The national debt and household debt stand to be a very real threat to both the entire globe and the standard way of life in America.