Remember when Clinton created a budget surplus? Times were good, and the government had a chance to pay down some bills. To George W. Bush, paying of America's debt was not the best way to buy votes. Bush instead said screw the deficit, Americans were obviously paying too much in taxes.
See how crazy conservatives are with money? If everything had been left alone, we'd have dramatically lower deficits with money left over. But no, it's better living on the edge of bankruptcy.
Here's a clip of Clinton and then Bush, to show you how and why we got into this mess: