Democracy and Power 104: Future Debt Burden A government debt is a government claim against personal income and private property – an unpaid tax bill. —Hans F. SennholzExcessive spending and inflicting debilitating debt is integral to all modern democracies. Why? Elected politicians institute programs for current voters and shift the debt to future workers, even the unborn. Social Security, Medicare, prescriptions drug benefits for seniors are prime examples in America.