The Jury Talks Back

10/22/2017

Donald Trump’s Permanent $1 Trillion Deficit

Filed under: Uncategorized — Patterico @ 11:30 am

A fella named Stan Collender at Forbes says that Trump is headed for a permanent $1 trillion deficit:

Here’s how the annual $1 trillion budget deficits will happen.

In July, the Congressional Budget Office projected (Table 1) that the Trump fiscal 2018 budget will result in an average annual deficit of about $677 billion between 2018 and 2022. But that took the Trump budget pr[o]posals at face value and assumed Congress would agree to all the spending cuts proposed by the White House, something that the House and Senate have already shown no interest in doing. That makes the average annual baseline deficit over the next five years closer to $750 billion.

While the White House and its congressional supporters insist the tax cut the House and Senate will consider in the next month or so will eventually pay for itself with much higher economic growth rates, the congressional budget resolution passed by the Senate late last Thursday (and highly likely to be accepted by the House) assumes that the deficit will increase by about $150 billion a year over the next 10 years. Nonpartisan analyses show that the deficit will increase by an average of between $220 billion and $240 billion between 2018 and 2027 and even more thereafter. An average of the three estimates results in about a $200 billion increase in the budget deficit for each of the next five years.

That will make the annual deficit around $940 billion.

There’s more.

The “more” includes things like increased military spending, disaster assistance, and the like, all pushing our permanent deficit above $1 trillion.

You don’t have to agree with every aspect of Collender’s numerical analysis to see that Trump is not interested in controlling spending. Remember: former deficit hawk turned spendthrift Trump budget director Mick Mulvaney said: “We need to have new deficits because of that. We need to have the growth.” This is not the language of someone who is going to push for spending cuts. Our biggest issue going forward is entitlements, and Trump promised you during the campaign that reforming entitlements was not on the table.

I got very angry at President Obama for exploding our deficits and our debt:

But on the debt and deficit, he has been an unparalleled disaster.

Barack Obama has exploded our debt and shows no signs of letting up. The damage he is wreaking upon this nation will take decades to recover from — if we ever do. He is certainly making my children’s futures far more miserable.

Trump appears to be heading down the same road. The only difference today is that the GOP will be openly applauding him for it, or at least shrugging it all off like it’s no big deal. And a GOP Congress — which sometimes pretends to act on behalf of limited government when a Democrat is in office — gains zero political mileage out of opposing big spending when it is proposed by a Republican president.

And the apparently small minority of us former Republicans who actually cared about limited government and controlling spending are left shaking our heads in disbelief.

Meanwhile, the too-malleable word “conservative,” which used to stand for the small government envisioned by the Founders, now stands for “Whatever Donald Trump Says.” Which means that, in the view of unprincipled partisan Trump fanbois, I am now “not a conservative” — because I am criticizing the Wonderful Donald Trump. Never mind that I am saying the exact same things I have always said, and truthfully applying my long-held principles to Trump as I applied them to Obama. No matter. Posts like this will earn comments like “You’ve become just like Little Green Footballs” and “this endless Trump criticism is why I barely read you any more” and nonsense like that.

But remaining silent about the debt, while inventing clever and insulting terms for people who care about it and criticize Trump over it, will make someone a very popular and widely read “conservative” columnist.

2017, man. 2017.

[Cross-posted at RedState.]

3 Comments »

  1. This IMHO is an excellent post. This is the sort of thing that should be decried, loud and often, because it’s massively harmful to the country.

    And, been as you raised the issue of other posts and the reactions to them, I;ll comment on that was well: It’s a pity that hard hitting pieces like this get, to an extent, lost in the chatter of outrage of posts on comparatively trivial issues (Trump was a bit late sending a $25k personal check, Trump said outrageous things, Trump is often a moron on twitter, etc). All those things are true, but they pale in comparison to major issues like the deficit.

    Personally, I find what Trump’s budget director said to be far and away the most terrifying utterance of either the Trump campaign or Trump administration.

    Comment by Arizona CJ — 10/22/2017 @ 12:22 pm

  2. LGF. Wow. That brought back memories. Of course you’re nothing like Charles Johnson as he went off the deep end into the crazy side of the pool, whereas you’re standing still while almost everyone else is moving towards the deep end. But, you’re not alone, there are many of us just as unwilling to drown ourselves in tribalistic fashion.

    Comment by Sean — 10/22/2017 @ 8:42 pm

  3. Trump was a bit late sending a $25k personal check

    I have a slightly different view on that. It’s not that Trump was a bit late. It’s that he was never ever going to pay the man a cent, until the media made him.

    Otherwise I am OK with your comment.

    Comment by Patterico — 10/22/2017 @ 9:25 pm

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