Obama's Deficit Problem

By Conor Clarke

Boy, lots of healthcare and deficit news today. David Brooks says healthcare costs are the administration's big fiscal issue and Obama had better get serious. Peter Orszag says healthcare costs are the administration's big issue and Obama is getting serious. Obama himself says healthcare costs are his big issues and he's about to get serious. And the healthcare industry says maybe he's getting a little too serious.

To this I can add nothing, except a graph of what our deficit has looked like over the past 70 years:


size of the deficit as a % of GDP.jpg

So by historical standards they're big. But they've been worse. Have a good weekend.

Update: Or, if you prefer, here is the CBO data on the deficit (I used the OMB data only because it runs back a little further). I don't think the conclusions one should draw are radically different:

cbo on the budget deficit.png

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2009/05/obamas-deficit-problem/17640/