Too Much Debt, Not Enough Oil

Posted by Byron King via The Daily Reckoning

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07/26/10 Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania – I just returned from the 2010 Agora Financial Investment Symposium in Vancouver, B.C. This year’s theme, “Assault on Enterprise,” provided a fascinating context for a wide range of investment insights and recommendations.

According to many of this year’s presenters, the assault on American enterprise is intensifying. Because the government has been overpromising, overcommitting and overspending for decades, it is hurtling toward a fiscal train wreck. The numbers have stopped adding up. Looking out, there’s NO WAY that most Western governments can ever pay their ongoing obligations or pay off past debt. But that doesn’t mean that governments won’t try to maintain their expensive and intrusive invasion of the private sector.

In fact, the odds point to rising taxation and tightening strictures on all aspects of capital formation. The effects will be to make you poorer, either by taking your money or by blocking you from pursuing your dreams.

On the first day of the Vancouver conference, for example, former US comptroller of the currency David Walker summed things up, saying, “Government has grown far too big, promised far too much and delivered far too little for far too long.”

Mr. Walker backed up his claim with slides showing how, over just the past nine years, unfunded liabilities on the government’s balance sheet – Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, etc. – have tripled. For example, Medicare alone has a $38 trillion (“trillion,”)…..…

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