Do you check that box at the end of your tax form to donate extra money to pay down our astounding national debt? Surprisingly, people do — but it has a minimal impact.
In reality, it’s like paying an extra dollars on a six-figure credit card bill every month and thinking you’re making a real difference.
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So far in fiscal year 2014, the IRS has collected $2.7 million in donations — to go toward a $17.5 trillion national debt.
Here’s a closer look at the year-by-year numbers:
In 2012, Americans were feeling extra generous and donated a record $7.7 million.
How long would it take to pay off the national debt if that amount was donated every year? Thankfully, the Wall Street Journal has already done the math. And it comes out to 2.3 million years.