20 February 2009

No More Magic Asterisks

From today's NYT:
For his first annual budget next week, President Obama has banned four accounting gimmicks that President George W. Bush used to make deficit projections look smaller. The price of more honest bookkeeping: A budget that is $2.7 trillion deeper in the red over the next decade than it would otherwise appear, according to administration officials. The new accounting involves spending on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, Medicare reimbursements to physicians and the cost of disaster responses. [...]
Even with bigger deficit projections, the Obama administration will put the country on “a sustainable fiscal course” by the end of Mr. Obama’s term, Peter R. Orszag, the director of the Office of Management and Budget, said Thursday.  “The president prefers to tell the truth,” he said, “rather than make the numbers look better by pretending.”
Now that's refreshing -- honest accounting?   Telling the truth to the American people about exactly how deep the hole we are in actually is?  

It's weird to have a president who talks to us like we are grown-ups, and thinks we have a right to know the truth about the status of the federal government's finances.

Now as for their plan to balance the budget this term while also enacting universal health care at the same time . . . well, even I'm skeptical of that one.


  1. Is it socialist to tell the truth about the amount of money the government is spending?

  2. It's all just talk, until I see actual results that help the country, instead of hurt it.


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