18:03 GMT +316 July 2018
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    (File) Detail of the National Debt Clock, a billboard-size digital display showing the increasing US debt, on Sixth Avenue August 1, 2011 in New York

    Journalist Reveals How Hurricanes Pierced US Debt Ceiling

    © AFP 2018 / STAN HONDA
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    The recent US government decision to temporarily increase the US national debt ceiling, which resulted in the aforementioned debt reaching the historic $20 trillion landmark, appears to be related to the hurricanes that devastated the United States this year, according to a Russian journalist.

    The so called National Debt Clock – a billboard-sized display installed on the side of a building in New York City, which shows a constantly updated tally of the current United States gross national debt and each American family's share of the debt – was removed after the US national debt hit the historic $20 trillion mark on Friday, September 15.

    Russian journalist and Radio Sputnik contributor Tatiana Golovanova pointed out however that the blame for raising the ceiling debt should be directed at “higher powers” rather than the White House.

    She noted that while US President Donald Trump said on numerous occasions that the national debt needs to be decreased, the losses from Hurricanes Harvey and Irma that fell upon the United States in 2017 have reached about $300 billion so far, forcing Congress to cooperate with the president and temporarily raise the debt ceiling.

    A local resident walks across a flooded street in downtown Miami as Hurricane Irma arrives at south Florida, U.S. September 10, 2017
    © REUTERS / Carlos Barria
    A local resident walks across a flooded street in downtown Miami as Hurricane Irma arrives at south Florida, U.S. September 10, 2017

    "Essentially the tempest that fell upon the US coastal cities saved Trump from the shutdown – a suspension of government agencies’ operation due to the lack of funding," Golovanova said, pointing out that the US federal government shutdown of 2013 nearly resulted in a technical default.

    She also added that while the clock was officially removed in order to modify the display, the US may need to spend at least "half a trillion dollars" to deal with the aftermath of violent storms and hurricanes that hit the country this year.

    "Considering the fact that the US does not intend to liquidate its federal debts, the new debt clock should probably be a bit wider. Because there’s nothing more pleasant than borrowing from yourself; you can always come to an agreement with yourself," Golovanova surmised.


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    national debt, damage, Hurricane Irma, Hurricane Harvey, Donald Trump, United States
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