From Kevin D. Williamson:
Man, I miss the fiscal discipline of the Bush era!
I never expected to write those words. The Bush-era Republicans were out-of-control big spenders, fiending for appropriations, handing out largesse, creating giant new health-care entitlements here, building nations there, all with a devil-may-care attitude about where the money would come from. They were all carrot and no stick, cutting taxes but not doing a thing about spending.
A mid-year budget review by the Obama administration forecasts the deficit will be $1.47 trillion this year and $1.42 trillion next year as the U.S. struggles to recover from the recession.
This year’s budget shortfall is $84 billion less than President Barack Obama’s budget office projected in February because of lower than projected spending for unemployment and some government programs. Still, the total would be a record and represent 10 percent of gross domestic product.
That is from the Mid-Session Budget review, where the government checks in on the federal books and sees how closely they match up to the actual budget. Pretty close, in this case — unfortunately.
Let me see if I can type this right: $1,470,000,000,000.00 — and that is just the part of the bill that we do not know how to pay. The actual bill for government spending this year is more than twice that. We are borrowing 41 cents of every dollar we spend. We are spending $36,000 per household.
Okay, here is the ritual denunciation: That is the biggest deficit in the history of the United States of America, in gross dollars. For Pete’s sake.
And here is the reality: That is the biggest deficit in the history of the United States of America since World War II, as a portion of GDP. That deficit is about 10 percent of GDP; the Bush-era deficits were typically about 3 percent of GDP.
Now, keep that in mind as you read this: