14 July 2005

Bush learns how to spin the deficit


The big news out of the White House (aside from Bush's refusal to wholeheartedly stand behind Karl Rove) is what's called "the falling deficit". Illustrated with a giant downward-pointing arrow, the Office of Management and Budget announced that this year's deficit will be "only" $333 billion, $100 billion lower than earlier estimates and $79 billion less than the all-time record, which was, um, set last year by this same group of profligates.

Another way of putting this is that your personal share of the national debt, currently about $26,000 for each American man, woman, and child, will increase by $1100 this year, whereas the earlier guesses had the increase at about $1400.

The problem is, it's comparing an earlier made-up set of numbers to the current partly made-up numbers. So if Bush wants to seem fiscally responsible while still doing the drunken sailor imitation, it's totally prudent to make the earlier numbers really terrible, so the current horrific numbers don't seem so bad by comparison.