The U.S. government has successfully hidden hundreds of billions, and it could very well be into the trillions of dollars in written off credit card debt. The problem is the people that actually never paid off the written off credit card debt still owe most of that money AND their credit rating is lowered so any future loans will be at ultra high interest rates.
So while the press spins consumer debt at around 900 billion to a trillion in credit card debt and student loan debt at around a trillion dollars, There most likely is ANOTHER trillion dollars in consumer debt lurking, but hidden from the media.
So what does 3 trillion dollars cost the public every year in interest rate charges? How about around 10% compounded daily? We'll call it 330 billion a year. But when we add in fees and penalties, another 30 billion can be added.
The result? 360 billion dollars a year in charges that don't pay down the principle, approximately 1 billion dollars A DAY, EVERY DAY!
So when anyone in government talks about a billion dollars in yearly waste, or a 10 billion, or 25 billion dollar program, they are basically laughing at you.