When it comes to funding national defense, policymakers tend to ignore war costs so an accurate assessment on the burden on taxpayer of overseas military ventures is increasingly important as pressure mounts to increase the Pentagon’s regular “base” budget.
This week’s chart presents improper payments made by the thirteen programs that the Office of Management and Budget has labeled “high-error.” The chart ranks transfer programs that allocate at least $750 million in payments from those with the lowest improper payments to those with the highest. The chart also displays the total improper-payment rates as a percentage of total program outlays for each program.
Policymakers need to reconsider whether the nation’s best interests are served by the current expansive global military presence. Limiting American military presence overseas would not only benefit the nation, it would also help control runaway DoD personnel costs.
This week’s chart shows per capita discretionary, mandatory, and net interest spending as a share of total per capita federal spending (real 2014$) since 1962. Rising government spending has largely been fueled by increases in mandatory spending, though there are pressures to push discretionary spending, as well as expenditures on net interest, higher in the foreseeable future.
This week’s chart displays the annual amount of real (2014 $) federal supplemental funding since 1980. As the chart shows, supplemental spending exploded in 2000s during the administration of George W. Bush and a largely Republican-controlled Congress.
This country needs to start making real and credible commitments to cutting government spending. With the president looking to put spending back on an upward trajectory, the new Republican-controlled Congress will need to champion the cause of controlling spending.
This week’s charts use data from the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Center for Responsive Politics to display global and US sugar prices, annual lobbying spending by the sugar industry, and government-planned market segmentation of the domestic sugar industry through the USDA’s Domestic Sugar Program. The charts show that Big Sugar is a formidable Halloween haunt: their lobbying efforts pay handsomely in the form of government-driven market segmentation and artificially high sugar prices.
This week’s charts use data from CBO and the Office of Management and Budget’s (OMB) historical tables to display cumulative federal spending and revenues projected over the next decade along with a time series plotting of the Steuerle-Roeper Index of Fiscal Democracy, developed by Eugene Steuerle and Tim Roeper, which measures the percentage of federal revenues remaining for discretionary spending after mandatory outlays and interest payments have been covered.
This week’s charts use data from the Subsidy Tracker 2.0 dataset compiled by Good Jobs First, a government accountability and smart-growth advocacy group, to display the states (plus the District of Columbia) that disperse the highest amounts and numbers of subsidies, along with the top parent corporations that cumulatively benefit from these subsidies.