Death and Taxes 2008
January 15, 2008 11:41 AM   Subscribe

 
The Pentagon's humongous circle is the color blue on my screen, it's weird, it should be drawn as one big black hole where all the money will eventually disappear
posted by matteo at 11:43 AM on January 15, 2008 [2 favorites]


Nearly 67% percent of our federal budget goes to Military/Defense.

I knew its budget was big, but not that big.
posted by drezdn at 12:01 PM on January 15, 2008


Poster Blue... errr red, blood red!
posted by blue_beetle at 12:04 PM on January 15, 2008


Poor Navy, always getting the hind tit.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:07 PM on January 15, 2008


Sigh, remember when we had a budget surplus?
posted by octothorpe at 12:09 PM on January 15, 2008


Nearly 67% percent of our federal budget goes to Military/Defense.

Wow. Back in the heyday of Reagan it was considered outrageous at a mere 50% of federal expenditures.
posted by clevershark at 12:09 PM on January 15, 2008


Nearly 67% percent of our federal budget goes to Military/Defense.

Damn Welfare Generals.
posted by DU at 12:13 PM on January 15, 2008 [4 favorites]


Since someone needs to point it out:

This is just the discretionary budget, and it doesn't include social security or medicare, both of which are bigger line items than the defense budget (not including the "global war on terror", of course).
posted by mr_roboto at 12:16 PM on January 15, 2008


Nearly 67% percent of our federal budget goes to Military/Defense.

The chart indicates that we spend 67% of the discretionary federal budget on national security. That's 25% of the total federal budget. Interestingly, it appears that our aid to Israel ($2.4 billion in the graph, plus about 12% of that in non-military aid not explicitly shown on the graph) is roughly 2% of their economy.
posted by gsteff at 12:19 PM on January 15, 2008


Nearly 67% percent of our discretionary federal budget goes to Military/Defense.

A distinction worth noting in pure dollars because the non-discretionary expenses (including interest on the National Debt and also including Social Security costs that are paid from its separate tax fund) are well more than half of total 'expenditures'. But still it doesn't really take away from the significance of that percentage...
posted by wendell at 12:20 PM on January 15, 2008


In the lower right corner is a comparison of items in the total budget including social security and medicare.
posted by zsazsa at 12:25 PM on January 15, 2008


looks pretty similar to last year's
posted by mr_book at 12:26 PM on January 15, 2008


Also AFAIK the budget does not actually include any of those $100 billion "supplementals" that go to fund the GWoT.
posted by clevershark at 12:26 PM on January 15, 2008


IANABG*, but aren't there a metric assload of "off-budget" federal expenses as well? Are they included on this chart?

*I am not a budget geek
posted by ZenMasterThis at 12:29 PM on January 15, 2008


Also AFAIK the budget does not actually include any of those $100 billion "supplementals" that go to fund the GWoT.

Iraq/Afghanistan are broken out at the 8 o'clock position on the central circle.
posted by gsteff at 12:32 PM on January 15, 2008


Very cool.

I wish they'd do something similar (large-scale, visual drilldown) with the entire budget, not just discretionary funding, since there's a lot of non-discretionary and off-budget monies floating around as well. Maybe they could start with average total tax burden (all sources) and break it down from there; that ought to ensure it all gets caught.
posted by Kadin2048 at 12:34 PM on January 15, 2008


I wish they'd do something similar (large-scale, visual drilldown) with the entire budget, not just discretionary funding, since there's a lot of non-discretionary and off-budget monies floating around as well. Maybe they could start with average total tax burden (all sources) and break it down from there; that ought to ensure it all gets caught.

That's exactly what's in the lower right hand corner.
posted by gsteff at 12:36 PM on January 15, 2008


We could cut the defense budget enough to pay for universal health care and quality K-12 education for every kid in America and still spend more on weapons than every other country in the world put together.
posted by kirkaracha at 12:50 PM on January 15, 2008 [1 favorite]


kirkaracha writes "We could cut the defense budget enough to pay for universal health care and quality K-12 education for every kid in America and still spend more on weapons than every other country in the world put together."

Well, I'm not sure about that. Currently, medicare and medicaid cost about $590 billion, and they cover about 90 million people. Even making some very generous assumptions about efficiencies of scale and the relative health of the covered populations, it would be hard to imagine that you could triple the coverage of these programs for less than about $600 billion, which would suck up most or all of the defense budget.
posted by mr_roboto at 12:55 PM on January 15, 2008 [2 favorites]


Iraq/Afghanistan are broken out at the 8 o'clock position on the central circle.

Yes, but those are the budget numbers, and they don't include the additional money that comes from special defense funding bills. So as numbers they're very much worthless -- you have to double them, basically.
posted by clevershark at 12:57 PM on January 15, 2008


Publically-held Debt to the Penny:

09/30/1997 3,789,667,546,849.60
09/30/1998 3,733,864,472,163.53
09/30/1999 3,636,104,594,501.81
09/29/2000 3,405,303,490,221.20
09/28/2001 3,339,310,176,094.74
09/30/2002 3,553,180,247,874.74
09/30/2003 3,924,090,106,880.88
09/30/2004 4,307,344,596,908.92
09/30/2005 4,601,238,726,062.04
09/29/2006 4,843,120,736,192.43
09/28/2007 5,049,305,502,926.48
01/14/2008 5,116,701,921,441.37

Thanks, Ralph!
posted by panamax at 1:10 PM on January 15, 2008 [1 favorite]


Yes, but those are the budget numbers, and they don't include the additional money that comes from special defense funding bills. So as numbers they're very much worthless -- you have to double them, basically.

This is not correct. The chart says in footnote 1 (talking about the $1,075 billion given as the discretionary budget) that "The 1075 billion includes the supplemental appropriation for the Global War on Terror." Also, the graph is based on the president's 2008 budget request (not what's actually enacted, anyway), and you can read the official summary tables here. The money listed under "Global War on Terror" in the graph, $145.2 billion, can be found in the official summaries in table S-2, "Discretionary Funding by Category." The 145.2 number is on the line "Global War on Terror" under the subheading "Requested Supplemental and Emergency Funding."
posted by gsteff at 1:28 PM on January 15, 2008


Previous versions: 2005 and 2007
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 1:35 PM on January 15, 2008


This is fascinating stuff:

Budget of the National Security Agency: US$7.5 billion

Budget of the entire judicial branch: US$6.7 billion
posted by sindark at 1:36 PM on January 15, 2008


Well, I'm not sure about that. Currently, medicare and medicaid cost about $590 billion, and they cover about 90 million people. Even making some very generous assumptions about efficiencies of scale and the relative health of the covered populations, it would be hard to imagine that you could triple the coverage of these programs for less than about $600 billion, which would suck up most or all of the defense budget.

Actually, I work at the Children's Defense Fund, which sponsors the All Healthy Children Act, which if passed would expand health care coverage to all children and pregnant women in America... the cost estimates are about $138 billion total over five years.

I can't run the numbers on education, but without a doubt, yes, the U.S. could provide universal health care for every American under 21 and still spend more on an army the entire rest of the world.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 1:46 PM on January 15, 2008 [1 favorite]


XQUZYPHYR writes "Actually, I work at the Children's Defense Fund, which sponsors the All Healthy Children Act, which if passed would expand health care coverage to all children and pregnant women in America... the cost estimates are about $138 billion total over five years."

So about $27.5 billion/year for 9 million people? That scales to about $600 billion per year for the other 200 million (not covered by medicare, medicaid, or your organization's proposal.)
posted by mr_roboto at 1:50 PM on January 15, 2008


What other 200 million? The original question was about coverage for all children; that's what this is.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 1:55 PM on January 15, 2008


Maybe it was. The conjunction is ambiguous. I read it as "(universal health care) and (quality K-12 education for every kid)".
posted by mr_roboto at 1:59 PM on January 15, 2008


If it's just for kids, it's not universal health care, is it?
posted by goingonit at 2:05 PM on January 15, 2008


Ah... that's a different cost estimate which I don't have. Anyway, I'm derailing, but I'm guessing you can get numbers like that from half the presidential campaigns right now.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 2:05 PM on January 15, 2008


Well, the total national health care expenditure is like $2 trillion...
posted by mr_roboto at 2:10 PM on January 15, 2008


We could cut the defense budget enough to pay for universal health care and quality K-12 education for every kid in America and still spend more on weapons than every other country in the world put together.

I know what you mean, but across all levels of government instead of just the feds, K-12 spending is massive. Googling, about $540 billion.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 3:01 PM on January 15, 2008


fwiw, here's a nice comparative look at world military spending, cf.
Our military spending exceeds the rest of the world's spending combined, and we spend almost 10 times what the second-place country, China, spends.

The US military budget was almost 29 times as large as the combined spending of the six "rogue" states (Cuba, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Sudan and Syria) who spent $14.65 billion.

Nor do these amounts include the billions of dollars in military aid we give to fund the armies of other countries, such as Israel and Egypt, which alone comprise substantial portions of those countries' defense budgets.

And this gap between us and the rest of the world has widened considerably over the last 10 years. Even though we were already spending many times more than everyone else in the world during the mid-1990s, the explosion in our military spending over the last 10 years has far outpaced the rest of the world, resulting in a larger gap than ever before.
also previously :P

cheers!
posted by kliuless at 3:20 PM on January 15, 2008


Can someone please cite a reference that SS & Medicare is the budget's largest expenditure (sp)? I have a bet with a friend in the balance.
posted by thekorruptor at 4:42 PM on January 15, 2008


Budget chart using Oreos (transcript).

Fun chart comparing the cost of the Iraq War to R&D energy investment.
posted by kirkaracha at 5:00 PM on January 15, 2008


thekorruptor, from the bottom right of that graph:

SS + Medicare = $994 Billion
Military + Non-Military National Security Discretionary = $1075 Billion (plus another $145 Billion for the "Global War on Terror")
posted by markr at 5:52 PM on January 15, 2008


Virginia-Class Submarine project: $2.49 billion
Infectious Disease Division of the CDC: $1.75 billion
EPA's Clean Air Division: $907 million

America: We put our money where our mouth is!
posted by Avenger at 7:39 PM on January 15, 2008


$261 billion on national debt interest (+9%). Hmm, paid off any of the capital?
posted by wilful at 9:13 PM on January 15, 2008


It's so nice to see that the Corporation for Public Broadcasting has taken a 25% cut, because we all know that only news with a profit motive behind it will keep America strong. (Speaking of which, what's that wacky SpearsLohanHilton up to today? Quick, I feel my strength waning...)
posted by hell toupee at 6:20 AM on January 16, 2008


Thanks, Ralph!

I'd think you could thank Osama for some of those numbers at least?
posted by Pollomacho at 7:56 AM on January 16, 2008


Thanks, Ralph!

I'd think you could thank Osama for some of those numbers at least?


nah--it's never the rich kids' fault. osama and bush are both ultimately blameless. their station demands it. but geeky consumer rights crusaders, well...
posted by saulgoodman at 8:00 AM on January 16, 2008


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