The same thing happens to entire nations occasionally. But when the money's gone, nations can mask the truth, print more money, and lie to their people and the world for a long time before the brick wall of reality hits them in the face. Saddest of all, the fomenting of lies and scapegoats can delay or derail the consequences, and the nation's people may never learn and profit from the grave error.
If children are never corrected, bad students never given a failing grade, or criminals not punished for their crimes, that's a green light that authority has broken down. Lawlessness and chaos inevitably follow; a terrible result for everyone.
Here is an indisputable fact: The United States, Greece, Spain, Portugal, and many other countries ran out of money quite a while ago. China and other global investors are now providing 46% of annual U.S. government expenditures. Germany has been paying just as much for Greece and other European Union countries, and there's no end in sight for all of them.
President Obama and his Democrat Party just announced that they have no intention whatsoever of curtailing U.S. spending, and they're demanding more; an unlimited end to their borrowing. The EU debtor countries also have said they cannot cut anymore, but their deficits increase.
How much longer can this go on? Paper money printing has covered up the grim reality for years, but at some point there will be so much paper money in circulation that it will lose most of its value. This is called hyper-inflation.
Sooner or later China, Germany, and other national creditors will have to shut off the money tap, or they will be dragged down with the bankrupts. They don't want to shut the tap because they are net-export countries, and world trade will grind to a halt. But they'll be forced to.
Why does this happen? People everywhere generally can't stand the truth. They create false stories and false personas for themselves and for their nations to make themselves feel better. Note that every time someone mentions a country or ethnic group they say, "They are a proud people!" Yes, almost everyone is "proud", and a lot of the time that feeling is based on nothing. Or based on a crime. The Nazis were proud, the Soviets were proud, and the slaveholders of the Old South were, too.
Many of our fellow humans seek to be like God, playing the generous benefactor or righteous leader to right all wrongs and fix the problems in the world. We cannot be or compete with God. It always created terrible tragedy.
The dreaded catastrophe is upon us.