To put these figures in perspective prior to the past few years the record was $400 Billion. Hence the variance between "then" (which was a record) and "now" is $1.2 Trillion - similar to the figures the past 2 years. For those applauding the "miracle" that is the U.S. economy (moaning and groaning along at 2.5-3.25% growth), I ask you to take out $1.2 Trillion (i.e. the growth versus previous records) off a $14.6T base and think about what the organic economy would look like without this superlative spending spree.
Or to simplify it more, $1.6 Trillion is more than the entire economic output of Canada; the world's 9th largest economy.
(as an aside the more I read about the $38B in 'cuts' our fearless leaders just agreed to, much of it sounds like accounting gimmickry and/or reductions in programs that were already frozen and could not be tapped - either way in light of the deficit you can see $38B is a bit of a joke - it's about 1 week of the annual deficit)
- The U.S. government recorded a budget shortfall of $188 billion in March, the Treasury Department said Tuesday in a report likely to add new fuel to the raging political debate about government debt and spending.
- ....brings the deficit to $829 billion for the first six months of fiscal 2011. This compares with $717 billion the prior fiscal year to date.
- The government spent $339 billion in March, according to the Treasury report, and took in nearly $151 billion.
- For the first six months of fiscal 2011, the government has spent about $1.85 trillion. Receipts for the first half of the year are $1.02 trillion.
- The IMF projected that the U.S. will have a fiscal balance as a percentage of GDP of -10.8% in 2011, the biggest percentage among advanced countries.