In light of Romney’s recent comments and since Pat Buchanan just called Obama a “drug dealer of welfare”, I wanted to bring this post from July, 30 2011 back to the top.
A short while ago, I caught a little of the re-broadcast of last night’s Hannity show on the Sky network here in Scotland. He and Frank Luntz were showing a focus group’s reaction to this video:
Both Republican and Democrat approval rates spiked in parallel as the video describes the similarities between drug addiction and the spending addiction in Washington.
There continue to be arguments about Republican vs. Democrat, Reagan vs. Clinton, Bush vs. Obama on the economy. We talk about budget deficits and debt, taxes and spending, programs, entitlements and policy. What gets lost in all of the debate is this fact: Government spending per capita increases every year even as our population continues to grow.
William M. Briggs, Adjunct Professor of Statistical Science at Cornell University created this chart to illustrate the per capita trend:
Forget deficits and debt, it is spending, and spending alone, that drives deficits and debt. The root cause of our issues with debt, deficits and tax policy is the amount of spending. Tax policy, budget deficits and borrowing are all RESPONSES to the rate of spend.
What the chart shows are two understandable spikes for WW I and WW II (and even a smaller one during the Korean War) but the important visual is the trend that started in the late 20′s and 30′s and continues today. Federal per capita outlay has increased from approximately $1500 in the 30′s to almost $12,000 today. This represents a 700% increase during a period when US population increased 156% (1930 – 122,000,000, 2011 – 312,000,000)!
With the respite in the years when there was the favorable combination of a growing economy AND a Republican Congress that held the line on spending (even they eventually succumbed to the siren song of “cash is power”), per capita outlays were flat.
It should be a “no-brainer” as to why the approval rates of all the politicians in Washington are reaching historical lows. 800 days without a budget in violation of US law. A “secret debt plan” that evidently only Obama knows about. People are fed up with the way that the business of the American people is being conducted in Washington and the “I know what is best for you” attitudes of our political class. The Real Clear Politics poll averages for Congressional job approval is at 19.2%, Presidential job approval at 44.9% (Gallup has Obama at 40%), and “Right Direction/Wrong Track” leans 67/25 to “wrong track”.
Seems clear to me that there is something bipartisan in D.C. after all – they have unified to achieve the scorn of the American public.
Conservatives in America and conservatives in Washington must hold the line.
Forget the hope, it is time for a change.