So how's that "New Era of Fiscal Responsibility" working out? Sadly, in an incredibly predictable way.
From a USA Today account of President Barack Obama's proposed budget for fiscal year 2011:
President Barack Obama sent Congress a $3.83 trillion budget on Monday that would pour more money into the fight against high unemployment, boost taxes on the wealthy and freeze spending for a wide swath of government programs.
The deficit for this year would surge to a record-breaking $1.56 trillion, topping last year's then unprecedented $1.41 trillion gap. The deficit would remain above $1 trillion in 2011 although the president proposed to institute a three-year budget freeze on a variety of programs outside of the military and homeland security as well as increasing taxes on energy producers and families making more than $250,000….
In addition to the freeze on discretionary nonsecurity spending, Obama is proposing to boost revenues by allowing the Bush administration tax cuts of 2001 and 2003 to expire at the end of this year for families making more than $250,000 annually, which the administration projects would raise $678 billion over the next decade. Tax relief for those less well-off would be extended.
The new Obama budget will also include a proposal to levy a fee on the country's biggest banks to raise an estimated $90 billion to recover losses from the government's $700 billion financial rescue fund. Those losses are expected to come not from the bank bailouts but from the support extended to General Motors and Chrysler and insurance giant American International Group as well as help provided to homeowners struggling to avoid foreclosures.
The one thing in Obama's favor? We can't say he didn't warn us that calling yourself serious about fiscal responsiblity was a code word for spendthrift. Again and again.