Bending the Third Rail
Because We Should, We Can, We Do
Friday, January 26, 2007
Budget Deficit
Time to correct the government's, in this case Bush although he's not alone in these little tricks, numbers on the deficit and deficit projections. These charts from Kash shows the real story:

All the projections you are hearing about (that Bush is crowing about) skip a few little details. First, all the projections include the social security surplus, which interestingly enough is projected to continue to grow well past when Bush said it would. But these surpluses are money that is promised to retirees and should be in a "lock box". Second, the estimates all assume the removal of Bush's tax cuts when they expire, which of course Bush opposes.

The above chart shows the differences. The chart is a bit confusing so let me explain. The top line is the budget deficit with Bush's tax cuts being repealed. The second line is the deficit with the tax cuts left in place. The bottom line is the deficit with Bush's tax cuts repealed and with alternative minimum tax reform. And again, let me remind you that all of these projection include the Social Security surplus. Here's what the effect of the SS surplus looks like:

I'm not positive on this, but I believe that these projections also do not include the Vietn ..... ah ..... Iraq war costs either. The bottom line is that the headline numbers and, as with all things Bush, the Preznit's crowing is all bullshit.