the party of fiscal sanity

Brian has made up his mind:

The Presidency is also the only office to which the IRS is accountable. I don't know about you, but I rather like the idea of taxation being under the control of a Republican instead of a Democrat.

Well, let's see. For Republicans, tax cuts are a religion. Dwight Meredith follows up with a direct comparison, pulled straight from the White House's Office of Management and Budget (OMB) data:

Under the last Clinton Budget (FY 2001), the Federal Government spent (see table 1.1) $1.863 trillion. In the first year of a budget prepared by Mr. Bush (and passed by Republican majorities in both Houses of Congress) spending was $2.010 trillion, in increase of almost 8%.

In the 2003 Budget (again prepared by Mr. Bush) spending is estimated to increase again to $2.140 trillion (plus the cost of the war in Iraq). That is an increase of about 6.5%. If $80 billion is added for the war, the increase is in excess of ten percent.

For 2004, Mr. Bush proposes (see table S-1) to increase spending yet again to $2.229 trillion, an increase of 4.2% (not including any supplemental spending required by the rebuilding of Iraq). Indeed, the budget projections provided by Mr. Bush propose to increase spending each and every year through FY 2008. If Mr. Bush has his way, by FY 2008, the federal government will have increased spending by about 46% over the last Clinton budget.

Even if we eliminate defense, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and interest on the national debt from the calculations, Mr. Bush proposes to increase total non-military discretionary spending (See table S-2) each year through FY 2008.

In the FY 2001 budget submitted by President Clinton about $349 billion was allocated to non-defense discretionary spending. By FY 2008, under Mr. Bush�s proposals, $466 billion will be spent on non-defense discretionary spending. That represents an increase of about 34%.

It's not clear why having the IRS being acountable to the President has any relevance to government spending - the IRS just collects the money, it doesn't decide how to spend it. That's the President's job. And he's accountable to us.

Dwight's "Politics, Law, and Autism" blog is essential reading if you care about how the government spends your money. His "Just for the Record" series - again drawn entirely from government budget data - is the most comprehensive analysis I've seen, looking at various performance markers like inflation, GDP, etc. over the course of GOP and Democrat administrations. The coda to that series is supplied by Brad DeLong, who addresses the impact of Congressional actions on budgets and spending.

UPDATE: Tacitus, with the help of WaPo, identifies the Master Plan.

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