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Jane L. Johnson



Articles by Jane L. Johnson

The Federal Mega-Debt is Here to Stay

15 days ago

US fiscal realities are well known. Total federal debt outstanding has now reached $34 trillion, up from $98 billion in 1981, $5.67 trillion in 2000, $13.56 trillion in 2010, and $26.95 trillion in 2020. And at 120 percent of the US economy’s productive capacity (gross domestic product), the federal debt matches that at the end of World War II.
That $34 trillion, when spelled out, is the number thirty-four followed by twelve (count ’em) zeros separated by four commas. So it looks like this, a lot of digits and commas for the human brain to comprehend: $34,000,000,000,000.
These official debt figures do not even include the large unfunded liabilities inherent in the largest federal entitlement programs, Social Security and Medicare, Medicaid, and several others

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Are We Really All in This Together?

17 days ago

Whenever governing elites create a new crisis, they insist that “we’re all in this together.” It’s time to ignore their lies altogether.
Original Article: Are We Really All in This Together?

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Federal Student Loans Drive Up College Tuition Levels

December 29, 2023

Like every other government program designed to make something “more affordable,” the student loan program has managed to drive college tuition to atmospheric levels and saddle students with massive levels of debt.
Original Article: Federal Student Loans Drive Up College Tuition Levels

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Federal Student Loans Drive Up College Tuition Levels

December 18, 2023

Mises Wire contributor Kevin Van Elswyk, in his November 29 article “Student Loans: The Continuing Crisis That Is Getting Worse,” nicely summarizes the current confusion and scandal of federal student loan programs, which at this point appear a miasma that will likely turn into an outright student grant program as more and more of these loan balances are forgiven.
It is most unfortunate that the US government, with good intentions to increase college attendance, ever became mired in this student loan morass. The effort originally began in the 1960s when economists observed that college graduates typically earn higher lifetime incomes than those who ended their formal education with high school. Thus Congress included in the Higher Education Act of 1965 a federal

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Today Is the Best Day of the Year to Rob a Bank

December 11, 2023

Today, the Fed takes a short break from robbing us via inflation and, instead, delivers huge amounts of cash to banks to service Black Friday purchases. The large cash infusions often make banks vulnerable to robberies.
Original Article: Today Is the Best Day of the Year to Rob a Bank

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Today Is the Best Day of the Year to Rob a Bank

November 22, 2023

Depression-era bank robber Willie Sutton, when asked why he robbed banks, replied, “Because that’s where the money is.” By “money,” he meant United States currency. He never indicated how he scheduled his robberies, but some days of the year may be more profitable for bank robberies than others.
Disclaimer: Neither I nor the Mises Wire in any way endorses bank robbery, which is a federal crime.
First, here are some facts about US “folding money,” Federal Reserve notes in denominations of $1, $2, $5, $10, $20, $50, and $100. The Fed no longer issues $500, $1,000, $5,000, and $10,000 bills, but they are still legal tender and may still be in circulation.
This currency is printed by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing division of the US Treasury, then supplied to

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The Federal Reserve is Running Losses. Does This Cost Anyone Anything?

November 7, 2023

Financial statements of the US Federal Reserve, which consists of the board of governors in Washington and twelve district reserve banks across the country, indicate that the consolidated system has generated both capital and operating losses for the past couple of years. The Fed was created in 1913 to issue and circulate an “elastic currency” that could respond to consumers’ demand for cash, end bank runs known then as “money panics,” and serve as a “lender of last resort” to the nation’s commercial banks. How is it possible that the Fed could be losing money after one hundred years of operation?
The debate has raged in the banking and finance communities. Two investigators, Paul Kupiec at the American Enterprise Institute and Alex Pollock at the Mises Institute,

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It’s Time for Some Debt and Entitlement Alarmism

October 12, 2023

Climate alarmism dominates the news cycle, but perhaps people be more alarmed by massive federal budget deficits and runaway entitlement spending.

Original Article: It’s Time for Some Debt and Entitlement Alarmism

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