Patterico's Pontifications

10/15/2018

Reminder: Our Deficit and Debt Are Exploding Under Donald Trump

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 9:39 pm



New York Times:

The federal budget deficit swelled to $779 billion in fiscal year 2018, the Treasury Department said on Monday, driven in large part by a sharp decline in corporate tax revenues after the Trump tax cuts took effect.

The deficit rose nearly 17 percent year over year, from $666 billion in 2017. It is now on pace to top $1 trillion a year before the next presidential election, according to forecasts from the Trump administration and outside analysts. The deficit for the 2018 fiscal year, which ended Sept. 30, was the largest since 2012, when the economy and federal revenues were still recovering from the depths of the recession.

Administration officials attributed the deficit’s rise to greater federal spending, including the military and domestic budget increases that President Trump approved this year, not the $1.5 trillion tax cut.

I know: nobody cares when it’s Trump doing it. Still, it’s infuriating to the small handful of us who still care about such things.

Oh, by the way:

Candidate Donald Trump, April 2, 2016:

DT: We’ve got to get rid of the $19 trillion in debt.

BW: How long would that take?

DT: I think I could do it fairly quickly, because of the fact the numbers . . . .

BW: What’s fairly quickly?

DT: Well, I would say over a period of eight years.

It’s now $21.6 trillion, and ballooning like mad under Trump.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

62 Responses to “Reminder: Our Deficit and Debt Are Exploding Under Donald Trump”

  1. Sequestration.
    Cut spending by 20%
    Only fund programs that give back, construction nowadays over military for example. Not popular.
    Get rid of the base line accounting system.
    Vote conservative

    mg (9e54f8)

  2. Our nation is on the way to Greece or, if the Dems take over and enact their agenda, Venezuela. We have reached that period that Lord Woodhouselee warned us about.

    JVW (42615e)

  3. Only fund programs that give back, construction nowadays over military for example. Not popular.

    The military serves as a jobs training program for a lot of people who otherwise aren’t ready for post-secondary education. And of course a lot of industries and even cities depend heavily upon the military for their own economies. We have no good options here.

    JVW (42615e)

  4. Sequestration.
    Cut spending by 20%

    I’m fine with both of these, but the biggest chunk of our budget these days is entitlement spending, and President Trump already promised us that entitlements wouldn’t be touched. And of course Democrats would never, never, scale back government cheese.

    JVW (42615e)

  5. So does the economy have to grow at a rapid pace for a decade? I’m all in on giving that a go. Let the wildcatters loose!!

    mg (9e54f8)

  6. Rebuilding infrastructure such as highways, bridges and dams employ a lot of skilled workers making a fair wage that spend it locally.

    mg (9e54f8)

  7. Rebuilding infrastructure such as highways, bridges and dams employ a lot of skilled workers making a fair wage that spend it locally.

    Yes, but it brings about its own problems too. If you have public employees building infrastructure, don’t be surprised if the projects are continually late and over budget so that the workers don’t have to worry about losing their jobs. Two summers ago they tore up a section of the street that I live on, one block down from me next to a park and a school, in order to replace a sewer line. Job probably should have taken no longer than 2-3 weeks tops; somehow it got dragged out to 15 weeks, with the sidewalk and one lane of traffic being closed which backed up traffic on the street for several blocks. Again, this went on for four months.

    There’s also an interesting argument made here that we don’t really have as much of an infrastructure backlog as advocates would like us to believe.

    JVW (42615e)

  8. If unions weren’t involved that sewer line would have had a chance to be on time and under budget. I am not anti military but they waste a ton of $. happyfeets example of jets not being moved before the hurricane is just plain incompetent.

    mg (9e54f8)

  9. Both major-party nominees for POTUS in 2016 were big-government free-spending grow-the-debt New York liberals. We’re headed up Denial River on jet-skis. In the best-case scenario, it will take a major system shock — e.g., the collapse of the entire Medicare/Medicaid edifice — to generate a constituency for fiscal discipline, even if combined with an urgent and comprehensive voter education program in the meantime to encourage basic fiscal literacy.

    It took the Civil War to create the conditions for passage of the Fourteenth Amendment. I very much fear that it will take something roughly comparable in destructive magnitude before we see any “entitlement reform,” and then it’s going to look like a slaughterhouse of disappointed expectations and broken promises.

    #TrumpIsTheSwamp

    Beldar (fa637a)

  10. Romney is the swamp.

    mg (9e54f8)

  11. Boooooosh is the swamp

    mg (9e54f8)

  12. Rove is the swamp

    mg (9e54f8)

  13. Rubio is the swamp

    mg (9e54f8)

  14. Slug Paul ryan is most definitely the swamp

    mg (9e54f8)

  15. I am not anti military but they waste a ton of $. happyfeets example of jets not being moved before the hurricane is just plain incompetent.

    Oh, I agree with this. Military equipment these days is every bit as likely to be based upon what defense contractor manufactures it in what Congressional district as it is based upon whether that piece of equipment is useful and necessary. Even Bernard Sanders becomes a huge fan of the F-35 fighter jet when it impacts Vermont’s economy. As nasty and churlish as John McCain could be, he was generally correct about how the military-industrial complex steals money from the taxpayer.

    JVW (42615e)

  16. If unions weren’t involved that sewer line would have had a chance to be on time and under budget.

    It’s not wholly based upon whether or not the government construction crews belong to unions. Actually, in a lot of cases it probably doesn’t matter all that much. I was speaking to a guy who worked road construction projects for a city or county one time and he was telling me that they always want to have a backlog of jobs ahead of them, otherwise they are concerned that contract workers won’t be retained, or there could even be layoffs of city construction employees. So, according to him, it’s not uncommon for crews to sandbag jobs to the degree that they can get away with it. Usually that means taking four days on what should be a three-day job, not anything as dramatic as what happened on my street. They also benefit because the more projects are in the backlog, the more likely the bureau is to be expanded with new hires and new contract workers. So they see it as a win-win.

    JVW (42615e)

  17. Candidate Donald Trump, April 2, 2016:

    Fake news! You can’t hold Donald Trump accountable for something he said in the past!

    Boooooosh is the swamp

    Trump’s accumulated deficits ($1.445T) for the first two years of his term exceed Bush’s deficits for the first six years of his term (and about a 1/3 of Bush’s seventh year…).

    By the end of FY2019, Trump will have added more to the debt in three years than Dubya did in his full eight-year term.

    Dave (9664fc)

  18. The problem clearly lies with the RINO establishment types that still control the majority of the majority in both the House and the Senate.

    People that never-Trumpers like Patterico keep in power rather than expose and primary out.

    Aarradin (c4b0a4)

  19. @ Aarradin, who wrote (#18):

    The problem clearly lies with the RINO establishment types that still control the majority of the majority in both the House and the Senate.

    Remind me, how many spending bills has Trump vetoed?

    Survey says: Zero! Trump has yet to veto anything. He therefore owns all of it.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  20. @8/@15. Agree. Time and maintenance issues aside- which is a convenient and unfortunate excuse- leaving $390 million high tech fighter planes exposed to the elements stranded in a hurricane isn’t a confidence builder in management. Recall back in the day reading a piece- [in some old WW2 era Life magazine if memory serves-] regarding procurement -fighter planes, tanks etc.,- and how factoring an acceptable cost into a product designed to be expendable was an essential part of the planning and budgeting. Lowest bidder, etc. They don’t seem to do that much anymore w/newer systems and design more toward limited lifetimes w/upgrades and future contracting in mind. Constituencies and contractors seem to matter more than actual need in an age where a foe w/a $10 thumb drive loaded w/a virus can quickly cripple a country. And there’s losses by accident in training and so forth to consider. When a B-2 accidently crashed some years ago it was literally $2 billion up in smoke; awful to see on TV. But, OTOH, w/upgrades, the AF has managed to squeeze six decades out of the B-52. And even w/upgrades, Russia has been flying Soyuz spacecraft for half a century. Maybe it comes down to a case of the better being the enemy of the good all around.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  21. Agreed.

    He has proposed less spending than Congress actually passes, although he has advocated for more military spending. So fault him for not vetoing what he is sent.

    But let’s also focus on the root of the problem, 1) the same old Congress critters spending up a storm, 2) the voters who won’t touch entitlement programs (biggest part of the budget).

    I have hope on Trump eventually taking on #1 more aggressively, right now he is OK not to fight that battle. Right or wrong, I don’t think he can win that fight with Congress presently.

    #2 Trump has not campaigned on and has no desire to tackle.

    So there you have it. Debt as far as the eye can see.

    PrincetonAl (e6d8c7)

  22. debt isn’t like rape cause you can’t lie about it like how Christine Ford did on Mr. Kavanaugh

    but it’s still kinda like rape a little bit

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  23. people forget how much money the sleazy corrupt military sucks up

    and then they leave their aeroplanes out in the hurricane

    idiots

    they’re SO stupid

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  24. I’m still waiting for the politician who says, “There is no free lunch.” when discussing programs like military expansion, free college tuition, Medicare/Medicaid, Social Security or infrastructure.

    John B Boddie (487ce8)

  25. I don’t know who could pull that off, the purely fiscal conservative wing is done for the next couple of cycles.

    urbanleftbehind (6098cf)

  26. The problem clearly lies with the RINO establishment types that still control the majority of the majority in both the House and the Senate.

    People that never-Trumpers like Patterico keep in power rather than expose and primary out.

    What a stupid comment. My favorite Congressman is Justin Amash. You’re just upset because I’m consistent on this and you want to take the blame off Trump.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  27. how many of those, are there, my congressman who was a possible target of Hopkinson has gone on to run for governor, against our palm tree copy of Obama, his replacement can’t get out of third gear,

    narciso (d1f714)

  28. I’m fine with both of these, but the biggest chunk of our budget these days is entitlement spending, and President Trump already promised us that entitlements wouldn’t be touched. And of course Democrats would never, never, scale back government cheese.

    This point needs to be emphasized.

    The FY18 deficit was $779B. Non-defense defense discretionary spending was $576B.

    So if you ZERO OUT non-defense discretionary spending, you’re still left with a deficit larger than the 2007 Bush deficit.

    To borrow a phrase, “It’s the entitlements, stupid.”

    Dave (9664fc)

  29. the biggest chunk of wasted money is the dirty npr money

    gee whiz everybody knows that

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  30. I think PDJT chooses not to look into that gifthorse’s mouth, HF, seeing as it could become official state radio with a thorough housecleaning of staff.

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  31. @28 Bah, “non-defense defense discretionary spending…”.

    Dave (9664fc)

  32. The scary part of this is that welfare rolls have been culled. They are not expanding.

    I learned a very long time ago that a rule of thumb in government budgeting is that 80% of more is structurally built in. The arguments are over the remaining 20% I believe the locked-in spending is more like 90% now. So, unless the pie expands, it is virtually impossible to significantly ramp up any given area. We have chosen to restore defense.

    We also choose to refuse to pay for what we want. Why should we if we are given unlimited credit card limits? Who cares that we will pay more than $1 TRILLION in interest next year?

    Party on! Excellent! We are Garth.

    Ed from SFV (6d42fa)

  33. President Trump is very shrewd about picking his battles and the one where you get congress to spend less has to wait until Mitt Romney’s well-used rub a dub dub Paul Ryan has relinquished his office

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  34. Mulvaney exed out npr, some department discretionary programs, our Congress of possoms weren’t interested.

    Narciso (d1f714)

  35. the biggest chunk of wasted money is the dirty npr money

    If it were the biggest chunk, footsies, we’d be in great shape.

    The feds only spend about $450M/year for both NPR and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (i.e. Sesame Street, et al.) combined. That’s million, with an “M”.

    seeing as it could become official state radio with a thorough housecleaning of staff

    Hannity is clearly the man for the job. Too bad his annual salary is almost 10% of the federal budget for NPR and CPB, eh?

    Dave (9664fc)

  36. “nobody cares when it’s Trump doing it.”

    Not so. We Trumpalos do wish Trump were also on top of the debt and deficits.

    But he can’t do everything and we’ll reluctantly accept his inability or disinclination to deal with those matters because of what he does on other matters.

    No doubt that judgment call makes us evil.

    Fred Z (05d938)

  37. During the primaries, some local radio hosts were insisting that we absolutely needed “someone like Trump” to tackle the spending problem because “he really knows budgets.” They’re not talking about spending and debt anymore. Anything not important to Trump ceases to be important to his fans.

    There are big Trump boosters who think Trump is morally superior to various other Republicans by virtue of not giving any thought to the sustainability problem in our entitlement programs.

    These are problems that used to have a lot of conservatives fulminating against “RINOs.” But sometime in 2015 or 2106, RINO was redefined as “someone who doesn’t revere Donald Trump.”

    Radegunda (b0ffbf)

  38. When Trump is secure enough in his power to veto a budget bill because of overspending, then we’ll see if he ever does.

    For the years Bush presided over a Republican senate/house, much was made in the press of him never vetoing budget bills. But of course, he approved them with the Republican senate/house before they ever got to the floor to make sure they would be acceptable so he never had to veto afterwards.

    But Trump hasn’t quite had that level of communication. Nor have the Republicans been secure enough in the house to take a budget to 51 vote budget reconciliation without Murkowski/Collins/Flake peeling out.

    Ingot9455 (82c9ce)

  39. But sometime in 2015 or 2106, RINO was redefined as “someone who doesn’t revere Donald Trump.”

    We need more congressmen and senators like Kim Jong Un and Vladimir Putin!

    Dave (9664fc)

  40. The lives boooosh ruined with his egomaniacal b.s. war in Iraq killed many families economic future. He should be behind bars.

    mg (9e54f8)

  41. there’s never been a president in history that had to deal with a lame duck speaker who quit but refused to leave and who loved amnesty and doing #resist all up in it for his lovely lovely slurp-daddy mitt romney

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  42. The lives boooosh ruined with his egomaniacal b.s. war in Iraq killed many families economic future.

    We’re all safer thanks to the sacrifices of those who served.

    They deserve our gratitude. President Bush deserves our respect.

    He should be behind bars.

    Anyone who believes this is to the left of Bernie Sanders, Nancy Pelosi, Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Elizabeth Warren.

    Dave (9664fc)

  43. lol the second iraq war was a silly expensive ill-conceived FAIL that got a LOT of our own people killed and maimed to where they don’t function very well

    and they followed execrable coward Colin Powell’s silly silly doctrine to the letter!

    and they still made fools of themselves!

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  44. I disagree Dave, as the friends of mine that came back {not in one piece} beg to differ.
    Yes, I’m left of chief running mouth.

    mg (9e54f8)

  45. With respect to national debt and spending. Here’s a nice example of the problem:

    https://www.manhattancontrarian.com/blog/2018-10-14-nice-to-see-that-somebody-is-paying-attention-to-the-poverty-scam

    ColoComment (8277f9)

  46. Have you noticed how many times, how many threads, we have to see bizarre comments about Romney?

    Just sayin’.

    More phrases need to be added to the filter, in my opinion. And I know if my own posts were referred to, by the host, as a “problem,” I would at least try to behave more decently. Out of respect for the host.

    Not so much, here.

    It’s like a party where everyone is talking—some agreeing, some disagreeing—and there is one drunk guy who crapped himself grabbing people by the arm and spewing spittle about as he raves.

    Simon Jester (a6712e)

  47. Colin Powell had a lot to lose with his friends in Baku as did Scowcroft and armitage, from this war, so he helped sabotage it, they banned Diane seaman who has published details of wmd tests,

    Narciso (d1f714)

  48. When Trump is secure enough in his power to veto a budget bill because of overspending, then we’ll see if he ever does.

    Maybe, but I’m getting tired of the subtle promise by Presidents of both parties that they will start getting serious about spending after they are safely reelected to a second term. It means we have four years of irresponsible extravagancy and then four years of trying to gingerly claw some of it back. That’s just not going to cut it over the long run.

    JVW (42615e)

  49. JVW,I actually worry about that “after the election, I will have more leeway” argument. I remember that!

    I think that many folks today—even congresscritters—don’t understand economics in the small “e” sense. That’s why I am hopeful about folks in business, but you can see how that worked out.

    I once had a federal grant, and got approval to pay undergraduates for work in the lab.

    One student took to claiming hours they did not work. I bit by bit added requirements (because remember, if I accuse a student of something, I can be accused in this weird world of ours).

    Finally I confronted the student, saying that they could not claim hours that they did not work.

    The student said “Why do you care? It’s not like it came out of your pocket!”

    I pointed out gently that it came out of ALL of our pockets, via taxes.

    And took the student off the project (after a long discussion with the Chair).

    What a world.

    Simon Jester (a6712e)

  50. Our socialized healthcare + Social Security is more than 50% of the budget. We know who refused to repeal Obamacare and we know no one has the guts to tackle Social Security. It will all collapse before it’s fixed.

    NJRob (1d7532)

  51. it was Meghan McCain’s dearly departed daddy what lied about repealing Obamacare

    a cowardly lie, and one he told many many times

    he had no guts to tackle the problems

    for a gutless man he was, and a dishonest one too

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  52. LOL. I love it when you use words better applied to yourself, Mr. Feet.

    How do you feel that you are viewed as a problem by the host of this blog?

    And yet you still can’t help yourself. Remember, you CAN and you HAVE written calm, well thought out, and clear commentary in the past…before you decided the “e.e. cummings on acid” was funny. You have been a problem for many people.

    Why not be part of something…better?

    Unless you just want to troll?

    I think we have the answer.

    Simon Jester (a6712e)

  53. I have a friend—a truly good person, who works hard to help others and improve science—being driven out of a job by cowardly little trolls, right now.

    So I am not patient with them.

    Simon Jester (a6712e)

  54. i like using different words

    right now’s a weird time in america

    ever since forever i wake up and have coffee and read the news starting at my friend Mr. Drudge’s page

    but it’s almost all CNN Jake Tapper fake news now and i been waking up and not even starting my computer

    just making coffee and having it in my chair in the darkness before the sun poppers up

    then i take a walk which is important this time of year

    you have to get out every morning every morning every morning even as it gets colder and colder

    it’s a weird time in america

    so much is going on and there’s hardly any news at all

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  55. Thank you for (i) not being gross and vulgar, (ii) being polite, and (iii) not mentioning things that have little to do with the thread. I appreciate that.

    Simon Jester (a6712e)

  56. you’re welcome Mr. Jester

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  57. Donald Trump criticized the Federal Reserve Board for raising or planning to raise interest rates.

    https://www.nbcnews.com/business/business-news/trump-says-federal-reserve-his-biggest-threat-lambasts-chairman-powell-n920871

    At least he’s not Andrew Jackson.

    But I have aquestion: What did he think he was doing when he appointed Jeroem Powell as Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board?

    He didn’t do his homework.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  58. 20. DCSCA (797bc0) — 10/16/2018 @ 1:37 am

    leaving $390 million high tech fighter planes exposed to the elements stranded in a hurricane isn’t a confidence builder in management.

    They had to. The planes weren’t cleared to fly. Now maybe the standards are too tough, or there shouldn’t be so many planes nt reasy to fly. There may be management problems, but they are deep rooted.

    Constituencies and contractors seem to matter more than actual need in an age where a foe w/a $10 thumb drive loaded w/a virus can quickly cripple a country.

    I think you need more – also thumb drives cost less.

    Stuxnet worked by letting the Iranians srread it on their own thumb drives.

    But, OTOH, w/upgrades, the AF has managed to squeeze six decades out of the B-52. And even w/upgrades, Russia has been flying Soyuz spacecraft for half a century. Maybe it comes down to a case of the better being the enemy of the good all around.

    We should keep more old…ships especially.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  59. At least it’s not $666 billion … that’s evil.

    tmm (3d89bc)

  60. hf

    I was reading a Victor Davis Hanson piece and ran across the word “maenads” which he was using to describe how the democrats and never trumpers lost their damn minds after Trump beat Hillary.

    I laughed when you called Hillary “yeasty”, it was a guilty laugh because that was a sharp mean arrow that was on target. When I see Hillary she reminds me of that joke about going into your attic and finding a dusty old box no one’s been in for years

    steveg (a9dcab)

  61. dont talk about that stuff until November 7!

    urbanleftbehind (6098cf)


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