When a debtor’s borrowing costs start to exceed what he spends on necessities such as food and medical care, it might give him pause. Likewise, to understand the federal government’s growing debt problem, consider these two items from President Obama’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB), presented Monday in the president’s fiscal year 2012 budget proposal: Last year, taxpayers spent more than twice as much on the Medicare program as they did on interest payments on federal debt. But starting in 2018, the federal government will pay more in interest costs than it will spend on Medicare,