Aug. 20, 2008 — -- The story of America's rising debt and sluggish economy have dominated financial news headlines, and now a group of filmmakers has turned the dire situation into a story for the big screen.
"I.O.U.S.A." is a documentary geared to grab the country's attention by taking a non-partisan look at the nation's debt, how it came to be and how it continues to grow.
Using stark graphs, hard numbers and interviews with economists, politicians and comedians, the movie hopes to call attention to the problem.
David Walker, the outspoken former head of the Government Accountability Office, is behind the flick. He hopes his movie will have a similar effect as former Vice President Al Gore's glabal warming documentary "An Inconvenient Truth" did when it was released in 2006.
"We suffer from a fiscal cancer. It is growing inside us," said Walker, who has spent the past year touring the country and outlining his fear of a looming economic crisis to anyone who will listen. "Our country would need $53 trillion invested today -- which is about $175,000 per person -- to deliver on the government's obligations and promises. How much of this $53 trillion do we have? Zip."
Walker said the U.S. needs to act soon in order to avoid trouble.
"I have three grandchildren. They didn't create this problem, but it's their problem. And if policymakers don't start making tough choices soon, they're going to pay the price," he said. "It's morally wrong. And it's time we righted that wrong."