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August 21, 2008

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Office of the Governor

A message
from Mark


Do you know the end of this movie?

I’m not one usually to hype the latest movie out there, but today there’s a movie premiering that caught my eye.

It’s a documentary called “I.O.U.S.A.” – featuring former U.S. Comptroller General David Walker on his ‘Fiscal Wake-up Tour’ explaining how America’s on the edge of a cliff for the way we spend our money and promise things then fail to pay for them. The movie lays out the case that with rapid entitlement expansion and unsustainable government spending, the country on its present course will “face an economic disaster of epic proportions.”

As a nation we’re in a $53 trillion fiscal hole, and we dig ourselves $2-3 trillion deeper every year. Put that in perspective: it means every American has an invisible $175,000 mortgage to the future hanging over his or her head, or about $455,000 per family. We’ve got 77 million baby-boomers about to retire, meaning that the federal government is spending four dollars on seniors for every one dollar it spends on kids. And perhaps most disturbingly, foreign investors own almost half of our public debt – it was only 20 percent twenty odd years ago, and almost nothing in 1946. Us owing so many billions to China, Russia, and oil nations like Iran and Venezuela may not turn out to be such a great idea.

This alarming movie is only showing in South Carolina for one night – tonight – before heading elsewhere around the country. I.O.U.S.A., along with a special live video town hall with Warren Buffett, Pete Peterson & Dave Walker, is playing at 8:00 P.M. tonight (Thursday, August 21) at Regal Sandhill Cinema 16 in The Village at Sandhills in Northeast Columbia (450 Town Center Place, Columbia, SC 29229). Tickets can be purchased on site. And if you really want to dig deeper into the numbers, head to to learn more.

I’d encourage you to go tonight if you have the chance. It may not be the popcorn-muncher you’re used to at the theatre, but I can assure you that it will get you thinking. I’d love to hear your thoughts about it, and who knows, maybe later this year we can have a special showing here in the Statehouse.

Take care,
Mark Sanford
Governor Mark Sanford

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