According to the most recent Monthly Treasury Statement from the Department of the Treasury, federal tax revenues for the first nine months of FY 2021 hit a record high of $3,056,078,000,000 (that’s trillions—count the zeroes).
Hurray! Right? Record high federal revenues must mean the federal budget is in great shape, right?
Well, no. Because federal spending also hit a record high of $5,294,027,000,000 over the same period, resulting in a massive deficit of $2.3 trillion. The only federal budget deficit larger than the current one was . . . last year’s.
Now, some emergency federal spending because of the Covid-19 pandemic was undoubtedly warranted. It’s clearly a public good to make the vaccine free to the public. And relief for households and businesses forcibly closed by government edict also seems correct, since that’s pretty close to a “taking” by government. For our part, we tried our best to drive attention to a solution that would have been much more efficient and targeted.
The problem, of course, is that not only do these annual deficits keep getting more massive, but they keep piling up as well, resulting in a federal debt of $28.5 trillion, or almost a quarter of a million dollars per taxpayer. Or maybe even worse.
So what is the federal government planning to do about all of this? Solve it? Guess again? Ignore it? We wish.
No, the federal government is going to double-down, raising federal spending by trillions more on an assumption that the federal government can essentially borrow and spend unlimited amounts of money without harmful consequences.
Noted economist Brian Wesbury calls this “the most dangerous experiment in world history,” and he’s right. This week IPI will be hosting a virtual policy briefing with Brian Wesbury on this dangerous experiment, and we hope you will join us. It’s Thursday, July 15, at 1pm Central, and you can register here.
Informing Americans about dangerous policy problems like out-of-control federal spending and debt is one way we at the Institute for Policy Innovation pursue our mission of promoting economic liberty. Because if future taxpayers are saddled with enormous debt and higher taxes, they aren’t going to have a whole lot of economic liberty to pursue their own dreams for themselves and their families. Please consider joining us in this important work, and please join us on July 15.