Presidential candidate Donald Trump says that he will balance the federal budget while also cutting taxes. Given that the gap between federal spending and revenues is more than $500 billion and rising, he is going to need lots of spending cuts to make that happen.
In his big speech last night Trump said:
Ten years ago, if you walked down the street looking at faces passing by, you could have counted off “young, young, young, young, young, old …”. Fifteen years from now, if you do the same, it’s going to be “young, young, young, old …”.
Smithsonian leaders have revealed that renovating the Air and Space museum in Washington, D.C. will cost almost $1 billion. That’s the equivalent of an army of 10,000 workers earning $100,000 each for a year to fix it up. Geez, government projects are expensive!
The FBI has not been starved; its budget has grown rapidly. The chart,from DownsizingGovernment.org, shows that FBI spending in constant 2016 dollars has more than tripled since 1990, from $2.7 billion to $9.1 billion.
The federal government funds hundreds of subsidy programs for state, local, and private activities, such as programs for housing and economic development. State and local governments, businesses, charities, and individuals could fund such local activities by themselves without federal aid. But America is increasingly kicking local activities up to the federal government, and so Uncle Sam the Middleman keeps growing.
A Time article by James Grant warning about rising federal debt has prompted pushback by columnists questioning whether debt is really so bad. At the Washington Post, Wonkblog columnist Matt O’Brien says “there’s no reason to cut the debt today.”
We’ve updated the charting tool at www.downsizinggovernment.org/charts with the latest data. You can plot spending on hundreds of federal agencies and programs in constant, or inflation-adjusted, dollars. The charts cover 1970 to 2016.
Which are the largest federal government agencies, and how much have they grown? The following series of seven charts captured from the charting tool shows the 21 largest agencies.
Large spending cuts should be on the agenda when the next president enters office in 2017. Spending cuts would spur economic growth by shifting resources from lower-valued government activities to higher-valued private ones.
In recent weeks, the bureaucrats at both the International Monetary Fund and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development have recommended that politicians should have a green light to supposedly stimulate growth by increasing the burden of government spending.
Washington, DC opened its long-delayed streetcar for business on Saturday. Actually, it’s a stretch to say it is open “for business,” as the city hasn’t figured out how to collect fares for it, so they won’t be charging any.
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