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Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Reality Check: How does government spend your tax dollars?
By Gretchen Hamel, Executive Director of Public Notice

How long does it take to rack up a trillion dollars in government debt?

What kind of critical scientific questions are federal research dollars being used to explore?

Should you consider quitting your job and getting certified as a lifeguard?

These are among the pressing questions posed in the second installment of Bankrupting America’s popular web video series, “
Real or Fake.” In this episode, our host hits the National Mall in Washington, D.C., to conduct on-the-spot interviews with Americans to determine how much they know about federal spending and debt.

Best of all, you can play along—just click “play” to test your knowledge of how your tax dollars are spent. (To view the first installment of “Real or Fake,” 
click here.)
Bankrupting America is a project of Public Notice, a nonprofit advocacy organization that’s been a leading voice in the push to bring real budget reform to the nation’s capital.

The “Real or Fake” series shines a light on where the money goes in a fun and lighthearted fashion—but we’re dead serious about the need to get the national debt and government spending under control.

That’s a timely message. With recent events in Washington like the debate over raising the debt ceiling and the S&P downgrade of U.S. government bonds, Americans are taking an increasingly critical look at exactly what they’re getting for their tax dollars. And they don’t like what they see.

“It’s pretty scary, especially when you have children that you know we’re leaving that debt to,” one interviewee says. The good news is it doesn’t have to be that way.

Learn more about how we can get the nation back on track through federal spending reform.

Gretchen Hamel is Executive Director of Public Notice, an independent, nonpartisan, non-profit dedicated to providing facts and insight on the economy and how government policy affects Americans’ financial well being.
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