Should the Government Encourage More Americans to Purchases Treasuries?

BY busadmin  March 3, 2010 at 11:01 AM EDT

Question: I have a question about servicing the national debt. Would it make economic sense for the federal government to encourage more Americans to purchase Treasury instruments, thereby returning huge interest payments to our economy instead of paying foreign governments? We would owe it to ourselves.

Baby Boomers at or near retirement age might prefer the security of Treasury bills and notes over the volatility of stocks. Though we can purchase Treasury instruments now, additional tax incentives, promotional rates for seniors and a sense of patriotism might ease the pain of servicing the national debt and increase individual savings.

Paul Solman: This is what countries have long done, especially in times of war. The United States offered “Liberty Bonds” to help finance World War I with domestic savings; “War Bonds” to help finance WWII.

Here are a few images of promotional posters from the WWII war bond effort: Image I, Image II, Image III.

And my very favorite:

War bonds poster

I wonder what poster you would design, Mr. Shulman?