It’s A Spending Problem

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Courtesy of Yuval Levin at National Review, here’s another look at the “fiscal cliff” deal’s impact on the nation’s debt and deficit problem:

YLchart1

And then there’s this comparison of spending and revenue, each as a percentage of GDP:

YLchart2

Going back to 1973, we’ve never been able to hold federal revenues much above about 18% of GDP now matter how hard the politicians squeeze taxpayers. That’s because markets are dynamic. The higher taxes go, the more Americans do to avoid paying them.

Our debt and deficit problems stem from the government’s inability to spend within the confines of what it’s able to raise via taxes. A lot of this has to do with voters who want lots and lots of government, but don’t want to pay for it. One way to accomplish that is for politicians to give the taxpayers that government, but ask someone else to pay for it either through tax hikes on a small minority of taxpayers (“the rich”) or, more usually, by adding it to the national debt and just not paying for it at all.

That’s called asking the kids to pay.

We’re not going to fix this problem without cutting spending. And our biggest spending problem? Health care entitlements, Medicare chief among them:

YLchart3

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com. In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters. He writes a weekly column for several North Dakota newspapers, and also serves as a policy fellow for the North Dakota Policy Council.

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  • SigFan

    Yeah, but we really stuck it to the “rich” – and that’s what this was all about from the get go. Obama and the left and their class-envy and never ending thirst for OPM.

    • $8194357

      The super rich are all ready invested over seas were their stash is
      safe from the redistributive justice theft we are experiancing now,
      and will get worse with the bankruptcy of the Fed,IMO.

  • LibertyFargo

    Yes. The House did NOTHING to change the strangle-hold on the way this is talked about and the narrative being put forward.

    Boehner should Go. Heck Paul Ryan was disappointing as well.

    • $8194357

      I believe the pre determined outcome of cronism and soviet central
      planning has showed itself as unstopable by the former rule of law
      two party Republic the Founders gave us…Most folks don’t even
      know DC opurates un Constituionaly above our Founders Government.

  • sbark

    USA debt, unfunded Liabilities of 122 trillion…..all summarized with this link…..we are in deep deep dodo………thanks to American Dem’cats.
    http://www.usdebtclock.org/

    • $8194357

      The ‘incorperated Federal government’ did this…
      It IS against the Constitutional government the Founders gave us.
      The soviet central planning rule of men above the rule of law government
      that usurpt Constitutional America and its Rule of Law foundations….

  • $8194357

    A spending problem is right…
    That narrows the blame some huh…

    535 useful idiot water boys and girls
    to elietist internationalist wealth redistribution schemes.

    Founders put currency backed by gold and silver in place for a reason.
    “Beware the debtors pen”

    Normal folks go to jail when they get bit by the ‘poison pen’. but not politicians.

    American bankruptcy and wealth redistribution “IS” and
    “HAS BEEN” the intended predetermined outcome for 100 years…….

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