I have to say, this makes me feel a little better about my own personal finances. Of course, comparing my teensy debt to the debt of the U.S. government could make everyone feel like they’ve got their lives together.

When Andrew Jackson was president, there was one thing he despised more than anything else: camels. Nope, it was debt. In Jackson’s eyes, debt was actually a personal and moral dilemma, so he slashed the budget, slashed spending, vetoed important projects, sold government land, and eventually, pulled in a surplus. However, his efforts were fleeting when they ended up causing a 6-year depression.

So, in the 1830s we had debt and no depression or no debt and depression. Now, we’ve just got loads and loads of debt AND depression. I don’t know, maybe it makes sense. I suppose in the course of history there aren’t a ton of instances in which power correlates highly with balance and intelligence… Know more.