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New ad campaign targets national debt

I meant to get to this last week when it came out but didn't have time: a debt-fighting organization has launched a multi-media ad campaign to educate Americans about the rapidly growing national debt.

The campaign comes from the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, an organization created by Peterson, co-founder of Blackstone Group private-equity firm. In recent years, he has turned his attention and sizable fortune toward the spiraling national debt. Last year, he hired former Comptroller General Dave Walker to run the Foundation, and it produced "I.O.U.S.A.," a well-received documentary on the debt.

Now, the Peterson foundation has launched KnowDebtFacts.com, which you can see by clicking here.

The site reports polls showing that 80 percent of Americans say that dealing with deficits and the national debt is a high priority, and 66 percent support creating a bi-partisan commission that would craft spending reforms that would be voted on by Congress. A commission that Walker would like to chair.

The site also includes a 30-second video on the debt, which you can also see on the site above. (Explanatory note: the deficit is a measure of how far in the red the federal government's budget is each year. The national debt is the sum of all yearly deficits since the founding of the republic.)

Last week, my colleague Ezra Klein blogged about the the Conrad-Gregg Commission, ginned up to do something about the debt. But don't hold your breath, Ezra writes.

A couple bonus items. You can see an interview I did recently with Walker by clicking here.

And here's a 30-minute version of "I.O.U.S.A.":

-- Frank Ahrens
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By Frank Ahrens  |  December 14, 2009; 2:08 PM ET
Categories:  The Ticker  | Tags: David Walker, Peter Peterson, debt, deficit  
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Comments

Abolish the Department of Farm Welfare. That'll save $100 billion a year.

Posted by: Garak | December 15, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

"In recent years, he has turned his attention and sizable fortune toward the spiraling national debt. Last year, he hired former Comptroller General Dave Walker to run the Foundation, and it produced "I.O.U.S.A.," a well-received documentary on the debt."

Why? Why does Mr Peterson do these things?

Oh, and where do Messrs Peterson and Walker stand on returning the income tax rates to those which contributed to a surplus under Clinton?

What a joke. Oh, and Ahrens is a useless hack.

Posted by: zukermand | December 15, 2009 9:39 PM | Report abuse

This propaganda will find a wide enough audience without its dissemination by the Washington Post. Perhaps, being a newspaper reporter, Mr Ahrens could put in the effort to inform us as to the context and merit of the video's claims, rather than simply "catapulting" it, as a famous politician once said.

Posted by: zukermand | December 15, 2009 9:47 PM | Report abuse

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