National Debt Scheme

When we hear popular talking points about our faltering economy, inflation, and how it is becoming increasingly difficult to provide the necessities for our families, it is important we step back and look at the bigger picture. Step outside our perceptions shaped by partisan politics and approach the conversation with objective information as a whole, not cherry picked to bolster our position. Our national debt is approaching $35 trillion, and roughly every 100 days another $1 trillion is added as our debt interest obligations exceed Medicaid outlays in 2023.


John Saulie-Rohman

4 min read

Let’s look at how our government functions. Our federal government has a critical role in ensuring our roads, bridges, water supply, education, health care, and commerce serve the needs of the American people, and are funded by taxpayers.

Big business and corporations seek to ensure the resources they rely on are accessible at the lowest cost, while also ensuring the shipment of their products and extraction of the resources they depend on are protected around the world. These assurances are made via military, diplomatic support abroad and supported with tax revenues collected by the federal government.

Because businesses seek to maximize profits, and paying taxes reduces those profits, seeking to reduce their tax burden is one way of increasing their profits. In short, as these corporations require vast amounts of support from our federal government, in order to ensure maximum profit, they work tirelessly and effectively to avoid paying for the services they require.

On the other hand, we have working people, also requiring certain services from the federal government such as Medicare, Social Security, Education, Infrastructure etc. Similarly, the working people do not wish to pay increasing amounts of their income to taxes to pay for these services.

So, we have two classes of taxpayers contributing to the federal government to provide necessary services, both of which are seeking to reduce their tax burden leaving revenues short of paying for the services both classes require.

But, because corporations and the richest more powerful people in the country hold so much sway over our legislators, with unlimited spending to ensure their own self interests are prioritized, we lose. The tax burden has effectively been shifted away from the most profitable corporations, who rely significantly on federal tax dollars, to the shoulders of the working class. From 1993 to 2017 the corporate tax rate stood at 35% until 2018 it was reduced to 21% where it stands now.

Previously, in order to ensure the services provided by the government are funded, taxes were increased. But over time, as more and more of the tax burden was shifted to the working class, the tax burden became increasingly unbearable and the working class said, enough is enough!

The result- our legislators are faced with the balancing act of satisfying the donor class, who they rely on for campaign funding etc. and have effectively bribed their way out of paying their taxes while the working class, which provides the votes needed to remain in office, refuse to vote for any candidate increasing their taxes. The solution- stop raising taxes and put it on the credit card, i.e. borrowing and adding to our national debt.

Below is a trend of Corporate Profits After Tax, while I’m not opposed to businesses succeeding, there is a stark difference between the gains realized by corporations and those realized by us, the working class. Make no mistake, this is all made possible by our elected representatives beholden to the powerful donor class funding their campaigns, ensuring their re-election.

Importantly, this is not a result of Democrat or Republican policy, this is a result of Democrat AND Republican policy.

So now, we get to the fundamental injustice of this problem. The borrowing of our federal government is facilitated by issuing debt securities through treasury bonds. Treasury bonds, or US debt, are sold with the assurance of a guaranteed return at the end of maturity. 

But who buys the vast majority of government debt? Large corporations, the very wealthy, and foreign countries. The two largest foreign countries holding US debt are Japan ($1.1 T.) and China ($858 B.). 

Take a moment to consider the implications of this, the crux of this entire scheme. Our legislators make very clear to their wealthy donors that they will ensure no further taxes will be imposed on them. Instead, our legislators add to the national debt, which would have otherwise been collected through taxes, offer our debt to be purchased with the assurance of a guaranteed return. 

In conclusion, we are being fleeced by our very own elected representatives. While they seek the balance of funding from the donor class and garnering our support, they continue to add to our unsustainable national debt, enriching those benefiting most from tax savings while we’re left holding the bag with a crumbling infrastructure, under funded education, and critical services being cut.

So what’s the solution? In my view, two important things must happen. First, we the people must overcome the polarization plaguing this country. We’re all struggling more everyday, but we’re not prioritized. Until we are able to unite, we will always be divided and weak, allowing this criminal situation to progress. Second, we must recognize, we can be pro-business, free market, etc. but when the threshold is crossed and the businesses we support are clearly undermining the institutions and services we demand, eroding our own way of life, we must work to put a stop to it and demand better.

As an Independent, unbound by party politics and free of special interest campaign contributions, I will always be a voice for the people. I will seek to fix this unjust and immoral cycle in which we find ourselves.