After an unexpectedly hawkish Federal Reserve raised interest rates by 75 basis points for the third consecutive time last week, all eyes were on markets and the economy. Few, however, paid attention to the effect persistent inflation and higher interest rates will have on Uncle Sam.

That’s surprising. The gross interest expense on the national debt hit $88 billion in August, according to the Monthly Treasury Statement. That’s $1.06 trillion a year. Interest on the national debt is exploding and heading toward what economists refer to as a “doom loop”—the vicious circle in which the government’s borrowing to pay interest generates yet more interest and yet more borrowing.

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