Vote Truman


Category: Credit, Data Analysis, Digital Media

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

22 Responses to “The Change in America’s Debt by Presidential Term”

  1. hankest says:

    I wish the press would do these things by federal fiscal year (maybe the Economist did, i can’t tell from this graph).

  2. Greg0658 says:

    looks like I get to pitch the softball .. gee – what a weapon of mass destruction can accomplish

  3. Tony61 says:

    I wonder what the debt would look like had we maintained tax rates close to the 1990′s; and what the deficits would look like if we reinstated those rates. Any math whizzes out there?

  4. GeorgeBurnsWasRight says:

    Another way to look at the data is by date, which doesn’t change the order all that much. Clearly, for 3 decades the overall pattern is larger deficits, with Clinton’s second term the only outlier.

    I’m sure that people will come up with lots of explanations, but IMO it was primarily the Republicans adopting the position that tax cuts “pay for themselves”.

  5. techy says:

    its kind of misleading, 4 years or even 8 years of a president who cannot get make any laws on his own. plus some policy can take 10-20 years to show the effect. Right now supply siders trickle down theory has been proven wrong but since they have close 50% votes they will shout me down and spin the facts.

  6. Centurion 9.41 says:

    Classic economist use of an insufficient data set crossing over wildly different environments.
    No different than taking biology samples from different continents over different periods and making an assertion.

    Anyone who sees anything different is grossly ignorant of what constitutes a correctly applied scientific method to valid data and why the Dismal Science was once called Political Economy….

  7. 4whatitsworth says:

    The Bush Jr/ Oboma train of fiscal irresponsibility is clearly accelerating and the deceleration is likely to be epic and may change the competitive position of the United States in world. I wonder who will get the blame for the next four years.

    It looks to me like Oboma has adopted Cheney’s philosophy remember this quote “Reagan proved that deficits don’t matter”. I wonder who we are going to blame the next 4 years on..

  8. Livermore Shimervore says:

    Obama was stuck with Supply Side Fail-onomic tax rates during a credit collpase.

    $2. 5 T taxes collected:

    $1 T = defense and wars
    $500 b = Medicare
    $500 b = Medicaid (grandpa’s nursing home, poor kids)

    That’s 60% of revenue spent right off the bat.

    Obama would then have to cut all federal spending by 60% to make the budget hawks happy and produce a balanced budget. This would increase state taxes instantly, because they can’t manage enough in cuts to keep taxes from going up. And of course today, a Republican-controlled House, where all spending bills originate, continue to hand Obama $1 trillion in additional spending once revenues have been exhausted. Clearly neither party has the stomach for 60% spending cuts. The country as a whole wants $3+ trillion in spending (namely the part going to their own state) but only half the country wants no one to pay for it. Not the wealthy, not the middle class but maybe the poor — nevermind that they don’t have that kind of coin in the first place.

    And for irony: Those states most likely not to earn enough to pay FIT (average income is well below the level where FIT kick in) are 1- amongst the states most likely to receive back more than they pay in and 2- the most likely to oppose any increase in taxes under any circumstance.

  9. whskyjack says:

    You do realize that Truman left office with lower poll numbers than Bush the younger. Austerity will get you no votes in this world.


  10. socaljoe says:

    Correlation is interesting… what’s the causation?

    Democrats are more austere leading to less debt growth?
    Democrats are bigger spenders leading to higher GDP growth?
    We tend to elect liberal governments in times of prosperity?

  11. failedevolution says:

    The similarities with the period that followed the Great Depression in US in 1929 is, one might say, shocking. The gap between the rich and poor is widening, while extreme nationalism is gaining ground in Europe despite the great suffering that brought in the past. If history is repeated, we should, unfortunately, expect new major upheavals and conflicts worldwide, towards the end of this decade or at the beginning of the next one. But today, there are also some differences from the Interwar period. The most significant are, the great expansion of the middle class in the West, the economic growth of the developing countries, and the full deregulation of the free market as well as the rapid transfer of capital globaly with the help of technology.

  12. victor says:

    The Economist is famous for creating confusion via fancy charts, no exception here. Without somehow incorporating the colors of the Congress during the Prez terms as shown, we only get half of the picture at best.

  13. philipat says:

    I am not a US citizen but have great admiration for what America used to represent. Most of those living outside the US favour Obama because that is what the MSM told them.

    It would probably have been no different under McCain, with the same loss of civil liberties, bailout of the Banks and endlless wars, but I find it sad that any US citizen would vote to re-elect a President with such a record. Especially because this is often justified on the basis that the alternative is worse. Is this the best that America can do? If so, I truly fear for the future.

    IMHO, only Ron Paul offered any hope for REAL change, in contrast to the “Hope and chains” offered by the present election.

  14. Bridget says:

    Ok,I admit to having had a few glasses of wine, but………it looks to me as though the far right column shows debt as a percent of GDP. Which is what you would expect to see, considering the title given to the chart.

    Not sure what the rest of the bars and the numbers -30 through 30 represent.:(

    Maybe I’ll try again in the morning.

  15. Bridget says:

    Got it now. Percent of change in debt to GDP over the preceding four years. Obama’s screwing up the Democrats’ track record for sure.

  16. dvdpenn says:

    Interesting that Truman’s 1949-1953 period was followed by recession, as was Ike’s 1953-1957 stretch and Clinton’s 1997-2001.

  17. leveut says:

    “Vote Truman”

    Really. One might wonder if the people who prepared the chart, and those who cite Truman with approval, are aware that there was such a thing as World War 2, in which the US had massive deficit spending and a massive requisitioning of prime labor talent into the armed forces, or, that during the period of Truman’s elected term ( and of Eisenhower’s first term), that prime labor pool was removed from government spending, i.e. debt financing, into the non-government commercial workforce.

    One might also wonder if the people who prepared the chart and those who cite Truman with approval might think that a rapidly expanding, nonwar, post-war private economy might increase GDP and end up reducing debt as a percentage of GDP.

  18. bobnoxy says:

    Why aren’t people putting the blame where it belongs, on those with ”the power of the purse”? We keep hearing that Obama hasn’t had a budget proposal passed while in office. We also know that tax and spending starts with the House, if I have that right.

    We know that past Congresses have said no to spending they didn’t agree with when deficits got bigger. This one has never said no. Why does Congress get a pass, and why no noting of the steady deficit track after the House went Republican in 2010?

    I guess blaming everything on Obama is just too politically opportune to pass up. And no, I didn’t vote for him either time.

  19. JimRino says:

    Bridgit, you mean Bush Screwed up Obama’s record.
    Obama didn’t put more Americans ( white Americans ) on Food Stamps, Bush Built that.
    When you allow an un regulated Wall Street to commit Fraud, what did you expect?

  20. Bridget says:

    One might especially wonder, leveut, about those who wish to credit the Democrats with Truman’s big percentage reduction after WWII, but in the same breath wish to make excuses for Obama’s big percentage increase after the great recession. It ought to be both or neither. :)

  21. jeffers5 says:

    Where’s Eisenhower when you need him?

  22. dastone16 says:

    Hmm – Article 1, Section 8, Clause 1 (Tax and Spend Clause) is enumerated to Congress.

    I’m curious how this would look when charted by Congressional political party.