Budget

Some Huge, Big, Gigantic Numbers in the GOP House Budget Plan (and Obama's)

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As Peter Suderman has noted, the House Republicans have released their budget plan, which, despite lavishes tens of billions of extra dollars on the Dept. of Defense, is still being booed by GOP war hawks.

Here are the topline figures of what the Republicans want to spend and take in via taxes over the coming decade:

In a sense, none of this matters, even the figures for fiscal 2016, which starts in October. That's because budgets are political documents that are part of a negotiation among the president (who released his budget plan some weeks ago), the House, and the Senate (its plan is yet to come). But among non-binding figures, some numbers count for less than others and I'm a big fan of focusing most on outlays for the next year or so. The government can actually control how much it spends in the near term, while its ability to generate revenue or guesstimate things down the road is much shakier.

So this much we know, the GOP House wants to spend $3.8 trillion next year. That compares with President Obama's wish to spend $4 trillion next year. Obama's budget summary is below:

If Milton Friedman was right to say that the ultimate cost of government is the amount of money it spends, then here is the choice we are faced with in 2016 so far: The president wants to spend the equivalent of 21.3 percent of GDP while the GOP House wants to spend 20.3 percent.

Over the next decade, if the president got his way, we'd have average spending of 21.7 percent of GDP each year. The GOP would trim that to just 18.8 percent of GDP, which is a much smaller number and a not particularly convincing one. Under the first four years in the Bush years, after all, when the GOP held the White House and both house of Congress, the government spent 19.1 percent, 19.7 percent, 19.6 percent, and 19.9 percent of GDP.

For a more specific breakdown of spending by category, here's the way the GOP figures things:

The "Discretionary" figure above includes spending on defense, to which the "Global War on Terrorism" figure must be added. All told, the GOP is pushing for $617 billion on defense/global war on terrorism in spending for 2016. That compares to Obama's $605 billion below (which doesn't break things out into the same categories). 

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  1. Fuck the GOP, yo

  2. So the total debt is going to continue to rise, but they are projecting that as a percentage of GDP, it is going to decrease?

    So they think we are going to GROW our way out of this? How is that going to happen? We’re stuck in a 1-way vice of regulations. It only gets tighter.

    1. But we’ll make it up on the volume, Playa!

    2. So they think we are going to GROW our way out of this? How is that going to happen? We’re stuck in a 1-way vice of regulations. It only gets tighter.

      Look, they’re just bold visionaries with a plan. It’s up to the rest of us to be good little cogs and give them the money they need to see it through.

      1. You mailedit. Top fucking men….and women…and Lizzie Warren….

        1. *nailed it*

      2. How will they grow the economy?

        By granting amnesty to 12 million or so illegal aliens, and preferably more. At least that’s what I believe their plan is.

    3. Growth will always be greater next year. So they say.

      Even if that were true, something that is never asked is where that growth comes from. Is it increased government spending? Private capital expenditures that are influenced by government policy? Increased consumer spending due to unsustainable credit expansion because of monetary policy?

      1. I believe the GOP plan is to cut taxes and defund Obamacare. Which would lead to growth.

        1. I’ll believe that right after the dragons appear in the skies.

        2. Err no it wouldn’t.

          Tax cuts do not lead to growth because it does not matter whether the government extracts money from the economy via taxes, borrowing, or inflation. They all have basically the same effect on economic growth over the medium to long term.

          If you cut taxes but not spending you might or might not get a small short term illusion of increased growth but 3 years down the road everything will have evened out and your net benefit will have been 0.

          As far as defunding Obamacare, that is a truly stupid idea which will make thing significantly worse and not better. Yes it is a horrible law that needs to be overturned and either repealed or replaced but simply defunding it will take a really bad idea and turn it into a disaster.

      2. Growth is currently decent.

    4. ” How is that going to happen? We’re stuck in a 1-way vice of regulations. It only gets tighter.”

      Simple, cut the budgets of the regulatory agencies. Or just shit can them altogether.

      1. And you expect the same morons who legislated those agencies Into existence will legislate the End of them?!

        Big Grin…

    5. They don’t believe in the boom/bust cycle, but they’re counting on a boom to end the recession. That makes sense.

    6. Agreed. There is no way in hell we’re going to average 4.5% growth YOY unless there’s a pretty decent uptick in inflation. And in that case I think it’s going to be really unlikely to hold spending at the levels forecasted.

      1. Oh, is that the rate they are using?

        That is delusional.

  3. which, despite lavishes

    Goddamit, Gillispie, fuckin’ proofread your articles.

  4. Look, we outspent the Soviets and that worked. We only need to outspend ISIS and the world will thank us.

    1. No, FoE, we have met the enemy, and it is us. So we just have to outspend ourselves. Everything makes sense now in that light, doesn’t it?

  5. Did the CBO score this? The CBO’s rules are hopelessly gamed. This budget proposal isn’t worth the bytes it takes up on my computer.

    1. Man, that bytes.

  6. Geez, anyone can make up numbers on a ten year spreadsheet. How would the Lee/Rubio tax plan change these GOP numbers? Because deficits apparently don’t matter, why have any taxes at all? Let everyone keep 100% of what they earn and let the Feds print/electronically create whatever the budget requires, then let inflation become the de facto taxation.

    1. The Lee-Rubio Plan claims to be revenue neutral although by changing the disincentives it cannot be revenue neutral in both the immediate and long term except by random chance.

    2. This would actually have been the fairest way to do QE.

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