One issue that has come up in Wealth, War and Wisdom is the amount that Germany owed in reparations following World War I. From a quick Google search, it seems that Germany owed about 83 percent of its GDP at the time and had to pay 2.5 percent of GDP every year. Conventional history textbooks present this as an unbearably high burden that Germans could not handle and therefore they needed to vote for Adolf Hitler and the Nazis.
Attitudes toward debt must have changed considerably since the 1920s. Japan owes more than 200 percent of GDP. The U.S. governments (federal, state, and local) owe about 100 percent (flashy ource; boring source; Washington Post). The U.S. debt service as a percentage of GDP is forecast to rise to 3.1 percent (source) for federal debt alone. If we add another 2 percent for the states, which is probably too low since they pay a highest interest rate than the feds, that’s 5 percent of GDP or double what the Germans supposedly could not possibly afford. This page of 2010 data indicates that the world average for debt service was 4.6 percent of GDP.
What has changed such that 2.5 percent was considered unbearable in 1918 but 4.6 percent is normal today?