Half full or Half Empty

Of course everyone is familiar with the phrase , is that glass half-full or half-empty as a test for a person viewpoint. I think I have another chart that serves a similar function for the political viewpoint.

So here is a chart showing federal revenues and federal outlays for the US government. As you can see that is a terrible disconnect between what we take in as a government and what we spend as a government. The ultimate source of this disconnect is that people want more services than they are willing to pay for.

If you are a Partisan Republican you focus on the dark blue line and insist that it be bent down until it is under the light blue line. (At least in theory. As the graph clearly shows, the republican did nothing to change the curve of the dark blue line while they were in power.)

If you are a Partisan Democrat you Focus on the light blue line and insist that it be raised until it meets that Dark blue line.  (Of course you ignore how sharply you turned that dark blue line up. That’s An Inconvenient truth.)

Aside from a brief period while the Government was split in the 90’s, we don’t live within our means regardless of the political party in power. It was very recently — election-wise — that Prominent  Republicans informed us that ‘Deficits Don’t Matter’™ before they discovered the horror if deficit spending — if it is a democrat doing the spending. Of course in order to try to curry favor with the majority of the population the Democrats are currently pushing ‘Tax The Rich’™, which of course returns us to people want services but are unwilling to pay for them.

Persoanlly I say both side of the equation must be addresses. We are spending too much and revenues must be raised. We are not going to get our of this hole with wishful thinking. Sadly that is the only thing we have a surplus of.

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One thought on “Half full or Half Empty”

  1. I hear you about people wanting more than they are willing to spend money on!! As an employee of a revenue expending public service (teaching), I have been intimately involved in this for years. “Let’s make the school year longer” – like they do in (Europe, Asia, etc.) and then the Union says – you must pay teachers for the additional time and the discussion stops. (Would you work EVEN MORE HOURS for only the same money, putting your college degree-requiring job at a salary of around minimu wage? No? Really? Oh, why not? You know it’s “for the kids.”) This year in my district we have had major cuts to planning time and a shorter school day at the high school level in order to keep from having to lay off staff. There is now roughly 10-20 minutes of planning that is available IN THE CONFINE OF THE SCHEDULED WORK DAY for each hour of instruction. Frankly, more planning goes into where to position a toilet in a home or business than can go into the typical school lesson. You wonder why our kids are failing when compared to their European and Asian peers? The typical teacher in the USA has 400-500% more scheduled time spent in student contact than their European and Asian peers AND said peers are expected to spend the remainder of their scheduled day designing lessons, preferably in collaboration with their peers. They do not deal with discipline. They do not have cafeteria duty or bus duty before or after school. You want to make comparisons? Let’s talk abou tTHAT!!

    By the way, the programs that are being cut HURT. I am watching my students not get the medical care and after school support that they need to be productive citizens because we are past cutting fat and are now cutting sinew and bone. Bear – you want to talk about this with me? Really? “Too much government?” When kids who need custom wheelchairs can’t get them? Would you please get out in your community and LOOK at what is going on before you talk about “Less government”?

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