Worldwide Account Balances

In the U.S., it seems that it’s almost taken for granted that everyone should be in debt.  Costs for Iraq will easily top a trillion dollars (even when you don’t consider “soft costs” and interest charges), while a large portion of the country doesn’t have healthcare.  A Wikipedia article helps shed some light on nations’ economies.  According to List of countries by current account balance, the United States has the highest amount of debt, by a tremendous margin (see #163 on the list).

This should be shocking.  The U.S. should be one of the richest countries in the world.  We have so many resources, a good (but declining) education system, and a fairly stable government.  And, we have a large middle class.  Yet, we also have one of the lowest per capita savings rates in the world.  And, at the risk of being repetitious, no one seems to care about the money we’re wasting on pointless “wars”.  Many empires have crumbled under the weight of what seems like “success”.  Corruption, greed, materialism, and their effects seem to be having quite an effect on the United States’ position in the world economy.


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