No, America Is Not a Poor Country

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When Donald Trump says America is a loser, apparently he’s dead serious. Judging by some of his answers during his interview with the Washington Post editorial board yesterday, he genuinely thinks we’ve all but slipped into third-world status these days. Here he is on American support for NATO:

NATO was set up at a different time. NATO was set up when we were a richer country. We’re not a rich country. We’re borrowing, we’re borrowing all of this money.

On South Korea:

That’s a wealthy country. They make the ships, they make the televisions, they make the air conditioning. They make tremendous amounts of products….I think that we are not in the position that we used to be. I think we were a very powerful, very wealthy country. And we’re a poor country now. We’re a debtor nation.

And on Saudi Arabia:

If you look at Germany, if you look at Saudi Arabia, if you look at Japan, if you look at South Korea — I mean we spend billions of dollars on Saudi Arabia, and they have nothing but money. And I say, why?…We pay billions— hundreds of billions of dollars to supporting other countries that are in theory wealthier than we are….I mean we spend billions of dollars on Saudi Arabia, and they have nothing but money. And I say, why?

“We’re a poor country now.” I wonder how many people believe that just because Donald Trump keeps saying it? In case anyone cares, the actual truth is in the chart on the right. There’s not a single country in the world bigger than 10 million people that’s as rich as the US.

HERE ARE THE FACTS:

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ONE MORE QUICK THING:

Our fall fundraising drive is off to a rough start, and we very much need to raise $250,000 in the next couple of weeks. If you value the journalism you get from Mother Jones, please help us do it with a donation today.

As we wrote over the summer, traffic has been down at Mother Jones and a lot of sites with many people thinking news is less important now that Donald Trump is no longer president. But if you're reading this, you're not one of those people, and we're hoping we can rally support from folks like you who really get why our reporting matters right now. And that's how it's always worked: For 45 years now, a relatively small group of readers (compared to everyone we reach) who pitch in from time to time has allowed Mother Jones to do the type of journalism the moment demands and keep it free for everyone else.

Please pitch in with a donation during our fall fundraising drive if you can. We can't afford to come up short, and there's still a long way to go by November 5.

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