Iceberg, Dead Ahead

A sobering look at our "unsustainable" federal budget outlook from the director of the Congressional Budget Office.  (ht/Drudge)

But CBO estimates that in fiscal years 2009 and 2010, the federal government will record its largest budget deficits as a share of GDP since shortly after World War II. As a result of those deficits, federal debt held by the public will soar from 41 percent of GDP at the end of fiscal year 2008 to 60 percent at the end of fiscal year 2010. This higher debt results in permanently higher spending to pay interest on that debt. Federal interest payments already amount to more than 1 percent of GDP; unless current law changes, that share would rise to 2.5 percent by 2020.

All I can say is I've been railing against excessive spending by the federal government since before the economic crisis, and I've continued my opposition all the more earnestly after it began.

The post above makes a point that's been quite obvious for me: no matter what we do with spending now, we're structurally guaranteed additional future spending burdens due to entitlement programs currently in place.

Fortunately, some responsible Congressional opposition leaders like Paul Ryan have been raising red flag after red flag on President Obama's healthcare push.  The President's plan, unfortunately, doesn't actually alleviate the spending problem down the road in the entitlement realm.  And it's likely going to require more government spending at precisely the moment we can't afford any more expenditures.

Fortunately, the President recently expressed some hesitation in proceeding with a second stimulus package.  The administration's original stimulus package, I think, can be deemed a failure:

The stimulus plan passed in February “is executing pretty much as expected,” yet it “won’t affect the economy’s primary problems, which are falling values of assets like homes and stocks,” said Doug Holtz-Eakin, who was director of the Congressional Budget Office from 2003 to 2006 and is now president at DHE Consulting LLC in Washington. So far, about $60 billion in spending and $43 billion in tax relief has been dispensed, accounting for 13 percent of the plan’s total.