Top 10 Winners in President Obama’s FY16 Budget

IMG_0533President Obama unveiled his 2016 BCA busting budget on Monday at the DHS Headquarters. The President extolled the virtues of his budget cutting, stating that he reduced annual deficits by two thirds since coming into office. Let’s examine that statement.

  • President Obama’s starting point was the largest deficit in American, and probably world, history, at over $1.4T in 2009.
  • In absolute terms, he signed the largest tax increase in American History, so he did raise more money by taking it from the American people.
  • Despite the ever-growing threats to our national security, he did substantially cut the US Military.
  • He also increased spending in many social programs and wealth redistribution programs, which more than compensated for defense cuts. The Budget Control Act of 2011 capped his spending increases. The BCA was the real control on spending, and it was thrust upon him when the American voters gave the GOP control of the House.

Now let’s take a look at where the budget increased the most. The Top 10 Largest Increases in FY16 (based upon dollars) – Where possible, color-coding has remained consistent with analysis of Social Programs/Wealth Redistribution.

– The 2015-2016 Delta column is a pure dollar comparison between FY15 and FY16. The % Delta column is added to show the magnitude of the increase compared to total program costs. Similar data is also presented for these same Top Ten comparing growth from 2007 (President Bush’s last pure budget) in purple to President Obama’s 2016 budget. What’s startling is that the combined growth of the top 5 programs in Chart 1 equals nearly $1.1T. That amount of annual growth alone is equal to the entire discretionary portion of the Federal Budget, including the Department of Defense.

2016 Predbud Top 10 Largest Growth Programs

Not surprisingly, the largest FY15 to FY16 increases are, interest and social programs. The defense increase follows two years of significant budget cuts despite an ever more dangerous world.

Also, Immigration Reform (highlighted in Red), totaling $8B, never existed before in the Federal Budget. The President is adding a brand new subfunction, despite the uproar and accusations of illegality over his executive amnesty. Without question it’s an in your face message to the new GOP majority, and unlikely to survive congressional budget hearings.

American Social Spending, How Much Is Enough?

rp_1200px-Seal_of_the_President_of_the_United_States.svg_-300x300.pngPresident Obamas SOTU speech provided the latest fuel on the fire of wealth redistribution in America. The President wants to tax us, funnel the money through the government bureaucracy, and send pennies on the tax dollar to pay for programs like community college. He also called for more regulations, for example to enlarge paid work leave. Forbes described the President’s speech as “More spending, dependency, and regulation”.

The blogosphere, twitter, and comments to online reports are full of the progressive army touting redistribution.

“It’s time that the 1% pay their fair share!”

“A caring country needs to support its citizens in need.”

“Republicans are uncaring and out to fill the pockets of the rich.”

The progressive left is never satisfied with how much tax money their programs cost, acting as if America doesn’t care about its citizens. Most likely however, most have no idea how much America already spends each year on social programs and wealth redistribution. A simple look at the Federal Budget shows that conservatively, over 60% of every federal dollar spent goes to these types of programs.

In 2014, that amounted to over $2.3T, and equaled 61.5% of the budget. In a few years, that amount is projected to climb to $2.7T in FY18. Table 1 below shows those figures, and the years in between. Funding for what I call “Regular Government” loosely aligned to what the US Constitution would support, in only $1.2T in FY14 (32.6% of the budget), and remains nearly unchanged through FY18, but shrinks to 27.8% of federal spending. Interest on the Federal Debt, which is the legacy of America’s social programs/wealth redistribution to date, is $223B in FY14, and more than doubles to $461B in FY18, growing from 5.9% to 10.4% of the budget.

Table 1

Table 1

The same information is shown in Chart 1 below. The bars correspond to the left axis (funding), while the lines correspond to the right axis (% of federal spending).

Chart 1 - Total Social Spending and Wealth Redistribution Funding vs the Rest of the Budget

Chart 1 – Total Social Spending and Wealth Redistribution Funding vs the Rest of the Budget

Progressives are either ignorant of these facts, or willingly hiding them. They speak as if taxpayers aren’t paying a dime in social spending. Americans, Republicans chief among them, are compassionate people, but the social safety net isn’t infinite, and this level of spending escalation is bankrupting our nation, and robbing future generations of their fortunes and liberties. The growth in annual interest alone will soon exceed the DoD budget, just to cover the minimum payment on America’s credit card.

The question is not one of more spending, but one of how to eliminate wasteful, duplicative social programs, and reform of the remaining programs to allow a solvent long term safety net. According to The Heritage Foundation for example, Social Security

“Beneficiaries face a 19 percent indiscriminate benefit cutif the Congress and president fail to act soon.”

Table 2 below breaks out the programs attributed to Social Programs/Wealth Redistribution and Regular Government above.