The United States Federal Government spent $2,730,000,000,000 in fiscal year 2007 (October 2006 – September 2007). That is $2.73 trillion or $2,730 billion ($2,730B). That spending can be divided into about five (not so) equal parts. I’ll give you a minute to figure out what those five parts are…no cheating but the answers are at the end of this post. While you are thinking, let’s talk about that $2,730B spending figure for a moment. That is about $1,000B more than the year 2000. It took us until the year 1987 to even exceed the $1,000B amount in any year in American history. 211 years (1987) to get to one trillion in annual spending, 15 more years (2002) to two trillion, and 6-7 more years to three trillion (estimated 2008 or 2009).
Alright, did you figure out the five spending categories? I was as surprised as anyone. Makes all this hullabaloo over earmarks seem really ridiculous. Seriously, you are talking about “wasteful spending” by earmarks in only 21% of the budget. How about the other 79%?
Anyway, to the point…Why have none of the major presidential candidates addressed the worst issues facing us over the next 10-50 years? Social Security and Medicare will account for 60% of spending by 2020 at current projections. We continue to spend by borrowing money to do so. 2007 saw the national debt at $8,951B and projected to go to $12,276B by 2013. As I talked about here, that can not continue if we are to remain a free and sovereign nation.
The mortgage “crisis”, earmarks, tax credits for college, middle class tax cuts, etc. are all inconsequential compared to the impending issues we face economically. We can not even afford what we spend now much less even consider anything like universal healthcare. It is time that we face these issues head-on before they become overwhelming. We can no longer afford politicians that only have a 2 or 4-year horizon and consider nothing beyond.
So as you may be submitting your 1040 today, consider the facts and the issues we face in regards to taxes and federal spending when November comes around. These issues are at the top of the list of reasons I am voting Libertarian this fall.
1.Social Security – $620B – 22.7%
2.Medicare/Medicaid – $577B – 21.1%
3.Everything Else – $574B – 21.0%
4.Defense – $530B – 19.4%
5.National Debt Interest – $429B – 15.7%
Source: Fiscal Year 2009 proposed budget historical tables – Table 4.1