Thursday, May 19, 2011

Current Government Expenditures versus Receipts

In a discussion on the comparison between household budgets and government budgets, Bob Murphy runs this very informative chart and adds:
Even while Presidents Bush and Obama both acknowledged that excessive leverage and overconsumption were problems during the housing bubble years, and even as revenues plunged, this is what happened to spending on their respective watches.

To me the chart dramatically shows just how far the government is from serious budget control. In my world, a first step would be to see the blue line (expenditures) fall below the red line (receipts), while preventing any increase in the red line. Does anybody think that is going to happen on a current basis versus some Alice in Wonderland forecast for a balanced budget 10 years out?


  1. What a shameful picture!
    Now how could a voter look at that thing and not GET IT??
    I've given up trying to convince my peers that it's broken. They just roll their eyes.
    I'm hunkerin' down out here in Galt's Gulch.

  2. Isn't this the same chart that Krugman uses to demonstrate the deficits aren't Obama's fault? One side looks at the slope of the spending curve, and we s**t ourselves. The other side looks at the slope of the revenue curve and says "see, it isn't our fault; raise taxes."

    Ron Paul is our only hope, but I don't know if there's a prayer even if he's elected. Oddly, our only long-term salvation may be through the collapse of the dollar even though that's not going to be fun by any stretch of the imagination.

  3. It is politically impossible that the gap will even be closed, let alone overcome. Unless the entire congress is hedged with Ron Paul clones, it isn't gonna happen.

    Even if RP is elected president, he'll likely die of "natural causes" a few weeks into his presidency. It would be far too easy for the CIA to kill him off and blame it on his age, and there's no way the true rulers of the US would allow a president like him.

  4. This chart doesn't look to be adjusted for inflation. It seems like yet another libertarian re-iteration of the notion that a nation's finances are just like running a lemon aid stand.