Monday, July 05, 2010

CBPP: Blame Obama on Budget Deficit? Think Again

When I hear the something for nothing Teabaggers whine about how Obama’s careless spending program is driving our country into the ground, and about how their grand children are going to be paying for them, I just want to throttle them, and then slam some things called facts and data on the table in front of them and make them look.

Neither are going to happen. First, I am a peaceful man not given toward throttling anything but my riceburner’s engine, and second, past experience tells me that shoving facts under the noses of Teabaggers does little good.

So let me preach to the choir instead.

Last week the Center on Budgets and Policy Priorities published this graph (at right) in an article you can read for yourself right here. A supporting data table can be found by scrolling down, but the overall trend is clear.

Projecting all of the major areas of government expenditure out ten years you can see what portions of the Obama stimulus adds to the deficit as compared to other areas, specifically, the Bush Tax Cuts and our Two Wars.

After 2011 the budget deficit includes Obama recovery measures that have become miniscule (by miniscule I mean between $60 billion and $37 billion) while the funding for our Two Wars will taper gradually from a high of $193 million in 2012 to a projected $162 million in 2019.

Bush Tax Cuts, on the other hand, will increase in significance as we go forward should they be extended without impediment, from a low of $295 billion in 2011 growing gradually to $705 billion by 2019. The increase is largely due to added debt service costs should the tax cuts not expire.

In other words, if Teabaggers are looking for a direction to point their fingers, if they are looking for someone to blame for the budget deficit, they need look no further than the 2001 to 2003 tax cuts.

In other words, YOUR grand children will pay for YOUR tax cuts.

Now going forward, how do we fix this because it is very much like getting a junkie off of crystal meth. Like an addict’s system, the American economy has become used to and dependent upon getting a fix from time to time. Going cold turkey, while admirable, is sure to cause upheaval in our fragile economy. It’s like “getting clean” while down sick with pneumonia.

But a balance must be struck here. America is addicted to its own inequitable tax policies where the super rich have benefited the most. And so to continue with the allegory, maybe it’s time to start distributing the methadone while we trim the tax cuts from the top down.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So without the circumstances that he chose to run to correct, President Obama's budget would have virtually no deficit?

I thought we were getting out of these wars?

Thank goodness for the fical restraint of this great man.