Better than expected!
The fiscal deficit black hole carries on, almost ignored by the mainstream media as the numbers are simply too big for the average American to comprehend. [USDebtClock.org] Plus, American Idol was on last night. Despite the green shoots popping up all over Cramerica, somehow the US has a 16% larger deficit in the first quarter of fiscal 2010 (Oct-Dec 2009) versus fiscal 2009 (Oct-Dec 2008) when TARP was launched. Funny that...
As the recovery continues our path of breaching last year's $1.4 Trillion deficit seems free and clear. The important thing is this $1.5 trillion (?) in new liabilities on our grandchildren are helping to stoke economic reports which cause financial infotainment commentators to cackle in glee about the resiliency of the US economy and give us reason to buy buy buy. Hey look - if you hand me $100,000 you would be amazed at the resiliency of my behavior as well.
[to grasp how enormous a $1.5 Trillion deficit it, consider that the entire annual GDP for Canada is that amount. Canada having the 11th largest economy in the world]
Once more, in America, we do not do cost-benefit analysis... it is only benefit-benefit analysis. We see the morphine adjusted economic data and no one seems to connect the dots of the massive costs laid onto future generations for these benefits. Please do not look behind the curtain. Just imagine how wonderful the economic data would be if we had a $3 Trillion deficit? Or if Krugman got his wish, a $7 Trillion deficit.
I eagerly await the Son of Stimulus err.. sorry, stimulus is no longer a word that does well in polling... I eagerly await the Job Creation Thingamajig. (or is it the Job Creation Dohickey? Someone call Pelosi to confirm what term is being used this time around). How much is that program going to cost us in the next few months? $150B? $200B? Just put it on the national credit card under annual stimulus for the resilient and dynamic* US economy Gosh darnit - I keep saying stimulus! I meant thingamajig.
*funny how we mock the Europeans for their staid and undynamic economy, yet we need to constantly inject ours with steroids. That's ok - just chant USA! USA! when questioned by the socialists and remember... dogma rules.
Oh yes, after the jobs thingamijig don't forget about the Fannie Freddie dohickey... that's going to leave a bruise on the grandchildren's piggy bank. [Jan 5, 2010: WSJ - The Treasury Department's Christmas Eve Masscare of the US Taxpayer]
- The federal budget deficit hit an all-time high for the month of December, and the red ink for the first three months of the current budget year is rising at a more rapid pace than last year's record clip.
- The $91.85 billion deficit for December was the largest imbalance ever recorded in that month, when the government often runs surpluses because of quarterly tax payments.
- For the first three months of the current budget year, which began on Oct. 1, the deficit totaled $388.51 billion, 16.8 percent higher than the $332.49 billion imbalance recorded during the same period a year ago.
- Last year's deficit surged to $1.42 trillion, more than three times the record of the previous year, an imbalance of $454.8 billion set in 2008. (to be fair, the US government was using off balance sheet accounting made popular by Enron, and then our financial oligarchs prior to 2009; so the year over year increase in 09 v 08 - while horrific - is overstated)
- The Obama administration is projecting that this year's deficit will climb even higher to $1.5 trillion, which would be 5.6 percent higher than the 2009 deficit. (we're 'exceeding expectations' with a quarter of the year down - by over 10%)
- The red ink is being caused by the impact a severe recession has had on government revenues and the billions of dollars being spent to stimulate the economy and stabilize the financial system. (???) (recession?? recessions are so 2009... we're in recovery baby. Can't use the recession excuse anymore)
- Individual income taxes are down, reflecting the millions of people who have lost their jobs, and corporate tax revenues have fallen as companies have struggled to deal with dropping demand for their products. At the same time, government spending on unemployment benefits, food stamps and other programs .... (i.e. these are signals of a non-recession.. as long as you live in the government economic reporting world)
- Through the first three months of the budget year, government revenues totaled $487.78 billion, a drop of 10.9 percent from the same period a year ago. Outlays through December totaled $878.28 billion, a decline of 0.4 percent from the same period a year ago. That drop reflected smaller outlays for the government's $700 billion rescue program compared with the same period a year ago when the program was just getting started. (in other words, even without a parallel of TARP launching in fiscal 2010 v fiscal 2009 - we have not put a dent into spending)
Not to fear folks - my D.C. sources tell me there will be a speech in mere weeks, where grand words of budget deficit reduction will be spoken. As we know, words from Washington - with shelf life of 30-60 minutes - are our salvation. Of course these words will be followed within months by a new increase in the federal debt ceiling - but nevermind that. Ignore the actions, watch the words (I am waving my arms in wizard like motions to keep you in the trance).
I've got plenty more blog entries on the subject from the past 3 years - I'll spare you listing any others, since no one who has control over the purse strings cares.