Tuesday, February 28, 2017
Where will it come from
President Beetlefart has announced that he wants to give a yuge and totally unnecessary pile of money to the military. He hopes to pay for it two ways. First he wants to cut every possible social program he can and second he his hoping for a rate of economic growth that absolutely no one else says is possible.
A day after announcing a big increase in military spending, President Trump appeared on Tuesday to be having second thoughts on the need for austerity across much of the federal government to pay for it, clinging instead to hope that a surge in economic growth would do the trick.Some may say he's a dreamer but most people realize he is just delusional and not least of all, has no ides the way things work with Congress. Even when most pretend to like you.
The comments, made ahead of his first presidential address to Congress, reflect the tension within the Trump administration over how to make bold investments in infrastructure and the military, cut taxes, protect Social Security and Medicare — and still remain fiscally responsible. Mr. Trump’s hopes, moreover, appear at odds with the lower growth forecast by his own economic team and the forecasts of most economists.
“I think the money is going to come from a revved-up economy,” Mr. Trump said in an interview with Fox News on Tuesday when asked how he would pay for his plans. “I mean, you look at the kind of numbers we’re doing — we were probably G.D.P. of a little more than 1 percent, and if I can get that up to 3 or maybe more, we have a whole different ballgame.”
Mr. Trump’s budget outline has made some Republicans nervous because he appears to be keeping his campaign pledge not to touch Social Security or Medicare, the two biggest drivers of the national debt. Mr. Trump’s budget director, Mick Mulvaney, has been a fierce advocate for making cuts to the programs, but Mr. Trump said on Tuesday that it would not be necessary because his tax cuts and the repeal of the Affordable Care Act would unleash a torrent of growth.
“If the economy sails, then I’m right, because I said I’m not touching Social Security,” he said.
Few if any economists foresee the burst of growth Mr. Trump is counting on. The Congressional Budget Office predicts that the real gross domestic product will grow at an average annual rate of 2.1 percent through the end of 2018.
Even the president’s own budget office is using an optimistic forecast — 2.4 percent economic growth — to calculate the White House’s anticipated deficit for the coming fiscal year. That rate is above most other estimates but well below the 3 percent Mr. Trump appears to be counting on.
Mr. Trump faces significant obstacles when it comes to turning his budget blueprint into reality. He will need to get Congress to lift the military spending caps mandated by the 2011 Budget Control Act, and he will have to convince Democrats and members of his own party that his priorities make economic sense.
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