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Fiscal therapy: 12 framing facts and what they mean

The American economy is in great shape in many ways.

Riding the cusp of an expansion that started in 2009, the stock market is up, consumer confidence is booming, and unemployment has fallen to historically low levels.

  • William G. Gale
  • Brookings

But dig beneath the surface and trouble looms.

America faces two distinct but related challenges that policymakers must address in the coming years if they hope to provide a brighter future for the nation and its people.

The first challenge is rising government debt.

Federal debt is already higher as a share of the economy than at any time in our history, except for a few years around World War II, when a…

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