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Interest on U.S. Debt Much Higher Than Stated

May 27, 1990

Contrary to James Flanigan's column of May 16, federal government interest payments on the national debt will be around $260 billion for this fiscal year. Government interest payments are not the same as the nebulous, unreliable and possibly deceptive net interest payments--the $200 billion figure mentioned in the column--in which interest payments projected to be received by the government are subtracted from the actual interest outlays.

Please do not equate the two. The public needs to know the facts and, in my opinion, we can not afford the actual interest payments of over $300 billion by fiscal year 1992, when we will have "loan-sharked" ourselves with horrendous interest payments.

JOHN MICHENER, Vista

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