The Magical Thinking Behind Federal Budgets
Article from For Liberty by Norm Leahy.
One of Official Washington’s oldest, and thoroughly bipartisan, parlor games is pretending to cut federal spending, even as spending levels continue to rise.
The president’s most recent budget proposal follows the rules to a tee. Veronique de Rugy writes that Congress will ignore any mention of cuts in Mr. Trump’s budget, and proceed to spend like the printing presses will never run out of ink:
…we know that presidential budgets are mostly magical thinking parading as real accomplishments.
Indeed they are. That includes the agencies supposedly having their budgets cut (spoiler, that very rarely happens):
…don’t feel too sorry for the beneficiaries of the programs that are being “cut” because they are not actually going to see their budget go down. What will be reduced is the rate at which the spending will grow. For instance, Uncle Sam will go from spending $4.8 trillion in FY2021 to spending $6.6 trillion in FY2030.
And so on. Politicians on both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue pretend they are being prudent stewards of taxpayer dollars, making tough decisions about where and how to fund government activities. The reality is that, with a handful of exceptions, they all want to play Santa Claus with your money.
The result is a raging sea of red ink – a collection of bills, debts, and IOUs our children and grandchildren will have to pay.