|Year||Receipts||Outlays||Surplus or Deficit(−)|
You can see that we're running a deficit the whole time, of course. In 2008, the economy goes in the toilet and outlays start to rise: 700 billion set aside for TARP, and President G. W. Bush's stimulus -- which was, I dunno, 100 or 200 billion?
In 2009, we're still paying for TARP, bailouts, plus the much more expensive -- what, 900 billion or so? -- stimulus from President Obama.
That stimulus was supposed to be one-time, right? And most of the money lent to banks under TARP has been repaid, and under the TARP act, repaid TARP money must be used for deficit reduction.
So if the stimulus was one-time and TARP was repaid, why are budget outlays for 2010 estimated as higher than 2009, and 2011 higher than 2010? 2011's estimate for outlays is over a trillion more than 2007's -- a whopping 40% increase in spending from 4 years earlier. (I don't know what the estimate on inflation for 2010 and 2011 is, but for the four years from 2005 to 2009 it totaled 10.7% -- annual inflation was around 2.6% or so). I'm just talking about what we're spending here, not the deficit or receipts.
I've been trying not to freak over the deficit thing, because I freaked in the 80s when Reagan ran up the deficit and the sky was supposed to fall but never did. But HOLY COW, the average deficit for the 10 years prior to 2009 was about 10% the deficit estimate for 2010. Eep. Okay, I know that comparing 1999 dollars to 2010 dollars is totally not fair, but still ... eep. O_O