A reader of this blog send me an e-mail and wrote the following (which I am sharing here with his permission):
I spent 7 years working for the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) in Washington, D.C--the agency headed by the Comptroller General of the U.S. (You linked to an article by the Comptroller in your latest blog entry.) I can tell you first-hand that everything in the article is true. The fiscal situation of this nation is very serious. In my time at GAO, I worked on the audit of the national debt which is currently about $9 trillion! However, that is not a true picture of the debt. When you include unfunded entitlements (e.g. Social Security, military and civilian retirement) the national debt is actually about $50 trillion or $170,000 per capita! Your analogy of the freight train in your last blog entry is appropriate. I'm just surprised that it hasn't derailed already! So I understand the urgency of getting off the train while I still can. For several years now, my desire has been to live an agrarian lifestyle and reduce my dependence on our industrialized society.