The economic illiteracy of my colleagues continues to baffle me. Or maybe it’s just intellectual laziness.
This weekend, the Washington Post ran this headline:
"BIGGEST CUTS IN U.S. HISTORY."
The Los Angeles Times agreed, saying the politicians were:
President Obama also called it: “The largest annual spending cut in our history.”
But it’s not the biggest cut, by any reasonable measure. It’s not even close to one. Budgets have been cut by much bigger margins in the past. Also, $38 billion is a tiny cut, less than 1% of the budget. A measly 1% cut that followed 100% increases. I like David Boaz’ take on it here.
Federal spending rose by more than a trillion dollars during Bush’s first seven years, and then by almost another trillion in barely three fiscal years. And then we had a titanic battle over whether to trim $38 billion.
The idea that the Democrats “have shown that they heard the message that government spends too much” or that the Republicans—the party that increased federal spending by a trillion dollars while nobody was looking during the Bush years—have “imposed a small-government agenda on Washington” is ludicrous.