Tyrannasaurus Debt

"Tyrannosaurus Debt" is a song in Schoolhouse Rock!, which can be seen in Money Rock. The song teaches about budget deficit.


Tour Guide: To your left, folks, is the Washington Monument.
To your right, the White House.
And over there, just beyond the Capitol, is the National Debt!
Tourists: Oooo! Wow!

There's something huge
Red, white, and blue
That's grazing in D.C.
It's gobbling up the taxes
That are paid by you and me
It doesn't seem to notice
We really can't afford
The billions that it's costing us
To pay its room and board

It doesn't roam but seems content
To dwell on Capitol Hill
As long as trucks keep pulling up
With tons of green-back bills
We've got to feed the big guy
We really can't forget
It has an awesome appetite
Tyrannosaurus Debt

Tour Guide: The debt was born in 1790, when our new government took over 75 million the colonies spent in the Revolutionary War.

We've got to feed the monster
So it doesn't get upset
It's got an awesome appetite
Tyrannosaurus Debt

Tour Guide: Alexander Hamilton, our first Secretary of the Treasury -- he's on the 10, you know -- wanted a federal debt to provide a reason to establish taxes to support our new nation.

The debt was young
They kept it small
They didn't know back then
In 1812, another war
Would make it grow again
By '66, the Civil War
Had cost the nation millions
The government in Washington
Now had a debt of billions

Tour Guide: The Civil War ran up a debt of almost three billion dollars that still wasn't paid off by World War One.

We're spending money we don't have
Or so it would appear
The deficit is that amount
We overspend each year
Though congressmen and senators
Make vows to cut its size
Despite their honest efforts
The debt just seems to rise

Tour Guide: Now the debt's over five trillion dollars and still growing...

A balanced budget would be great
To spend within our means
To stop the monster in its tracks
Before we bust our seams
It feeds on just the interest
Its appetite is whet
It never, ever stops to rest
Tyrannosaurus Debt

Tour Guide: And this is the U.S. Treasury. It sells Treasury Bonds, bills, and notes, and savings bonds to finance the debt. The U.S. government promises to pay the owner interest plus the value of each bond at a future date.

We've got to try to tame the debt
And bring it down to size
To let it grow unchecked like this
Is certainly unwise
The debt's a monster problem
That we really can't ignore
I guess we should be grateful
That it's not a carnivore
We've got to keep on servicing
Our trillion dollar pet
It's got a monster appetite
Tyrannosaurus Debt

A fiscal misadventure
With trillion dollar dentures
Tyrannosaurus Debt

Tour Guide: Feeding time is ALL the time.


  • The Bill from "I'm Just a Bill" makes a cameo near the end of the song, when Tyrannosaurus Debt emerges from Congress, and the Bill, who was presumably awaiting being passed by Congress like in his song, ends up fleeing at the sight of it.
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