FREEDOM ISN'T FREE
The US was born in debt. The earliest full reckoning of US national debt was compiled by Alexander Hamilton, the first US Treasury Secretary, who was sort of like the Nate Silver of his era--a self-taught economist.
The analysis dates to 1790 and puts the newborn US at around a 30% debt-to-GDP ratio, with the debt a bit higher than $75 million. Where did that debt come from? Well, the Continental Congress, the rough equivalent of the Federal government in revolution-era America, lacked the power to tax.
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