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Millions Are Hounded for Debt They Don’t Owe. One Victim Fought Back (bloomberg.com)
527 points by jseliger on Dec 6, 2017 | hide | past | web | favorite | 270 comments


A country that owes 20+ TRILLION dollars in debt, and has a shortfall of cash, for the current year, in the hundreds of billions of dollars, should NEVER allow debt collection on its citizens.

Until the country's leadership pays its debts, resolves its deficit, and starts anew with a clean slate, its citizens should receive the same debt protection the state enjoys.

If the country won't pay its obligations, the citizens should have free reign to do the same. What's good for the state, is good for its citizens.

The US does pay its debts, and reliably at that. That's why it was such a major deal when the US had its credit rating downgraded in 2011: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_federal_governme...

There's a distinction between debt, and failure to pay. The whole point of the continuous debates we have over raising the debt ceiling is to make sure the U.S. government can continue to function and be able to pay its debts.

If I borrowed $100 from you yesterday with the understanding I would pay it back in seven days, I'm in debt to you, but in good standing. If I borrowed it six months ago and it was due a week after that, I am not in good standing. Those situations are not equivalent.

This is not to defend horrible collection practices or the debt collection industry in general. But making some odd claim about U.S. government debt being equivalent to this needs a lot more explanation if you want it to be taken seriously.

You realize that national debt, corporate debt and personal debt don’t work the same right? Countries can go on paying only the interest on their debt forever. And how would the US finance this massive debt repayment? The only ways are to sell state assets, cut services and raise taxes. I’m not sure the population will be happy with these measures.

The country pays its obligations. When was the last time the US government defaulted on its debt?

May 10, 1979.

(Though in fairness they did own up to it shortly after.)

Neat. And it was (supposedly) a computer-related failure, making it nicely on topic.

The country is in debt, not default.

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