atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#4543: Accounting tricks

Karl Denninger points out that the federal government spent $1,086 billion more than it collected in fiscal year 2014, meaning that the deficit is in fact $1086 billion rather than the $483 billion claimed by the government.

I agree with his thesis: taking money from Social Security and leaving an IOU in its place is still deficit spending, because it's money that the government has borrowed.

Further, even accounting for that, the deficit is still higher than claimed--$809 billion--which is (as Denninger points out) 167% of the stated deficit figure.

But, hey! No one's going to call D.C. on their funny numbers, so there isn't a hell of a lot we can do about it, right?

* * *

There is an old, old joke: The opposite of "progress" is "congress". This is a damning list of eleven facts that won't be in Obama's STFU speech tonight. Including:
Today’s young Americans, for example, are the first generation to be poorer than their parents.

Americans of all ages are earning less than they did two decades ago when adjusted for inflation. Yet they’re paying more in taxes.
At age 47, in January of 1975, my dad had a wife, four kids, a dog, and a house. He was planning to buy a new car in the upcoming summer.

The article lays all the economic woes at the feet of government, which is pretty much where the blame lies.

* * *

As I said, the interview seemed to go well, and was fairly positive. Full time work would be wonderful, at least from a "health insurance and other benefits" standpoint. It looks like a nicer place, too. I'd be all over that.

* * *

So my wife brings in her iPad, showing me what we can expect to pay for a "bronze" plan under Obamacare, and it turns out that the State of Illinois will graciously help us obtain health insurance if we pay a mere $800 a month.

...and the fine print under the price says "0 persons covered". GO GO OBAMACARE WEBSITE!

I told her, "That is affordable! That's the Affordable Care Act!! We can afford that! You just have to give up your fancy cell phone. And stop eating filet mignon three times a week. And stop taking trips to Hawaii!"

(My wife's cell phone is a flip phone that's some five years old. We could replace its functionality with a $10 TracFone. And we are not taking trips or eating filet mignon.)

We can afford it! The government says so!


If I had $800 extra a month in my budget--if I could actually afford private health insurance--we wouldn't be in the straits we're in. Shit, if I had $400 left over after the bills were paid each month--but I don't.

The irony is that if the federal government had just purchased insurance for all the uninsured people out there, that would have been cheaper and more effective than Obamacare is.


ANd in the runup to the STFU speech the reporters are saying that Obama's going to ask for a tax increase. Of course.

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