At first glance, the projected deficit doesn't look that bad, does it? We've been through worse, haven't we?
But after I looked at it for a few seconds longer, I saw what was wrong. Where is the Reagan revenue boom (and the Clinton/NAFTA) echo?
The chart shows the federal receipts, spending, and deficit as a percentage of gross domestic product. Hit the link above if you can't read the fine print.
We mustn't scare the New Yorkers, but....there are more honest ways to present that information, especially if you are going to display it beside a document entitled "A New Era Of Responsibility".
Here's what those numbers really look like in millions of dollars, instead of as a percentage of another number. Can you imagine the NYT printing this chart alongside the "New Era Of Responsibility" payoff pamphlet ?
The first question you should ask is "What the hell is happening to the value of the dollar?" (Answer: They're printing them as they go.)
The second question is "Why did the NYT go out of their way to make the latest giveaway/bailout numbers look less threatening?" (Answer: The hope and change thing.)
The third question is "What is the total of all this deficit spending?"
(Answer: Here's the national debt as of last year. I don't have an update for all the latest ladles of slop and neither does anyone else, but you get the idea.)
And people wonder why newspaper readership is declining.