The good news is that the April, 2011 budget deficit of about $41 billion was roughly half the size of the April 2010 budget deficit, according to the Congressional Budget Office. The bad news, though, is that as the 2011 fiscal year chugs along, we've nonetheless managed to blow a bigger hole in the deficit than in the same time frame during the previous fiscal year. Here are the exciting first three lines of the CBO's monthly budget review:
The federal government incurred a budget deficit of $871 billion in the first seven months of fiscal year 2011, CBO estimates. That year-to-date total is roughly $70 billion more than the deficit incurred in the same period in 2010. Both outlays and revenues are about 9 percent higher they were last year at this time.
The fastest growing type of federal spending? Interest on our Mt. Everest-sized pile of public debt, which grew by 16 percent, or $20 billion. It's a depressing fiscal feedback loop: We're spending more and more…in order to pay for the fact that we keep spending (and borrowing) more.
To summarize: We're spending more, collecting more tax revenue, paying a rapidly increasing amount in interest, and running a higher deficit than we did during the same time frame in the previous year. Budgepocalypse, here we come.