One of the better op-eds I've read on the subject. Numbers... well... they don't lie... exactly. But the system that employs them can obfuscate their true meaning, and in the confusion, the more devious can attempt to take advantage of the uneducated masses. National debt has indeed ballooned, but few understand what that really means or how it happened. Much of the spending we do now is cleanup, rather than social investment .
The only problem it, most investments take more than a single term of political office to mature. Unless our political system changes, politics will consist of gaining power and retaining power through fear, prejudice, and buzzwords. It's too complicated to explain to the masses - so we'll just scare them into voting for us !