On February 26, 2009, the Obama Administration released it’s first budget projecting a net deficit over the next 10 years of $7.1 trillion. The Congressional Budget Office scored the budget and said, no, the deficit would be $9.1 trillion over that 10 year period. The administration didn’t like that number and insisted it was wrong. Forget that the CBO is a non-partisan organization whose entire reason for existing is to answer such questions, that number was just too high and the administration didn’t want to admit to saddling the country with that kind of debt.
I’m not sure why they were worried about that, their friends and non-journalists in the main stream media published this chart without so much as mentioning that not one single year was projected to be in the black. Nor did they mention that this preposterous level of spending didn’t even include the additional $1 trillion that Obama’s team projects universal health care will cost (again, the real economists say that number is more likely to be $2 trillion).
This week, in a shocking development that absolutely everyone saw coming, the administration admitted that yes, the real deficit number will be exactly what the CBO said it would be – $9.1 trillion! And this number still doesn’t include the costs of a universal health care program. Nobody seemed to care very much, certainly not Obama’s campaign publicists, aka the main stream media.
Some may ask why I would trifle over a measly $2 trillion. After all, what’s another couple trillion dollars at this point. We are drowning in these mind-boggling large numbers that are beyond comprehension for most Americans. And that’s exactly what the policy makers count on. And that is why it should matter to all Americans. It should matter that our government is spending like a group of drunken sailors on shore leave and expecting you and I to pick up the tab. Actually, that’s not true, were we able to give the politicians a truth serum, they would tell us they have absolutely no idea how to pay for this. Yet, they keep spending, and America keeps letting them.
$9.1 trillion over the next 10 years will mean a federal debt of more than TWENTY TRILLION DOLLARS by 2019 and that’s if the politicians are able to control themselves and stick to a budget – a laughably unlikely proposition if ever there were one. Maybe it is time to trifle.
With much fanfare today, President Obama asked his Cabinet to dig deep into their individual budgets and come up with savings of $100,000,000 from the federal budget. Finally, Washington is going to stop the madness; finally there is some fiscal discipline coming from our leadership. Or is there?
You see, 100 Million Dollars, while a big number to almost any American, is just .00286% of the President’s budget for the coming year. Since a percentage that small is almost incomprehensible, let’s try to put it in perspective. For someone earning $75,000 a year, this is the equivalent of saving $2.14. No, you don’t need to check my math, it’s correct. This much hyped effort is roughly the same thing as you or I skipping tomorrow morning’s coffee. Now don’t misunderstand, restraint in Washington is always a positive and to be encouraged. But, it is wholly disingenuous to hold a press conference and announce your “ambitious plans” to save a cup of coffee.
This is so obvious that even Obama’s fan club (oops, that should read – the White House press corps) caught on as you can see in the first two minutes of this hilarious video. As these reporters correctly point out, the White House scoffed at Republicans just a few weeks ago when they suggested that billions in earmarks were frivolous in light of the country’s financial situation. In Obamaland billions are small meaningless numbers we shouldn’t worry about, and millions are huge savings to call a press conference and pat yourself on the back about – NO WONDER WE’RE IN THIS MESS!!!!!!
Numbers are funny things. They don’t lie per se, but they can be manipulated to say almost anything. And this week when President Obama released his proposal to, “cut the federal deficit in half in four years”, some numbers were manipulated to say some pretty funny things. Although I’m not sure any of us will be doing any laughing when it is all said and done.
Prior to this year’s monstrous projected deficit of $1,300,000,000,000 (man, that’s a big number) the largest single year deficit in U.S. history was $455 Billion in fiscal year 2008. Yes, you read that right, our 2009 deficit will be three times the previous record! By the way, half of $1.3 Trillion is $650 Billion. Did you catch it? Look at those numbers again. When Mr. Obama promises to cut the federal deficit in half over the next 4 years, what he’s really promising you is that he will run the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th largest deficits in U.S. history behind only this year – and that’s if everything goes according to plan. Gee, thanks Mr. President!
This would be amusing if it weren’t so tragic. I noted this detail within 30 seconds of hearing his speech and waited for someone in the press to act like a journalist and comment on this point, but nothing. Instead they lauded the President with praise for “reigning in spending”, “making the tough decisions”, etc. etc. Well, there’s just one problem. The President isn’t reigning in spending. Instead spending is going to increase every single year under his budget as this chart indicates.
So, we are going to spend more than we’ve ever spent, run bigger deficits than we’ve ever run and every thing will get better? That sounds like a great plan. But it gets even sketchier folks! Look closely at this chart, the administration expects tax revenues to grow $2 Trillion in the next 10 years. Every dollar short of these revenue projections will be another dollar of debt, because we already know that Congress has no idea how to restrain themselves when it comes to spending.
This truly is some funny math. But it’s not so funny!