Former Senator Judd Gregg (R-NH) at The Hill:
The deficit for this year is now projected to exceed $4 trillion. This makes the deficit approximately four times larger then any deficit ever wrung up before. The debt we will owe as a nation will exceed our gross domestic product by the end of the fiscal year. This puts us into Greece-like status. The primary Social Security fund is now running cash negative and is projected to be insolvent within 15 years — or possibly even before the end of this decade. Next year’s deficit will likely be well over $2 trillion. The Federal Reserve will have expanded its balance sheet — which is a nice way of saying “printed money” — to the tune of at least $7 trillion and maybe more.
The only time the United States had this type of cataclysmic debt expansion was during the Second World War. That time does not overlap with this time. At the end of the Second World War we were, so to speak, the last man standing. Ours was the only industrialized economy that had not been devastated by the war. Our debt had expanded dramatically but our position of dominance in world commerce had expanded even more. We were in a growth spurt relative to the rest of the world and our post-war economic boom was unparalleled. Today is different and tomorrow will also be different. The entire developed world is awash in sovereign debt.
It could be argued that because of the natural resilience of our people and our unique capacity to drive growth, we are the best horse in the glue factory of debt. But we are in the glue factory nonetheless.