Where your taxes go

President Obama, in his State of the Union Address, said that taxpayers would soon be able to access an online “receipt” to show what all your taxes are paying for.  That site is now up, and it’s kind of interesting:  Your 2010 Federal Taxpayer Receipt | The White House.

HT:  Mary J

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • Joe

    This is very interesting. As an Obama critic – I will give him credit for this very good idea.

  • Joe

    This is very interesting. As an Obama critic – I will give him credit for this very good idea.

  • Dennis

    Interesting. But if they don’t start reducing some of those numbers, well.

  • Dennis

    Interesting. But if they don’t start reducing some of those numbers, well.

  • DonS

    Let’s see:

    26% for defense and 1.7% for international affairs. Those are at least legitimate federal budget items.

    7.4% interest!!!! Wow– and that’s with interest rates at historic low levels. Here you go, kids — our legacy to you! We had a nice ride on your money and hope you enjoy paying it back after we’re gone. Be assured it was all stuff we needed.

    46% combined for “health care” and “job and family security”!!! What??!! The federal gov’t shouldn’t be doing any of that. We can cut the budget in half tomorrow.

  • DonS

    Let’s see:

    26% for defense and 1.7% for international affairs. Those are at least legitimate federal budget items.

    7.4% interest!!!! Wow– and that’s with interest rates at historic low levels. Here you go, kids — our legacy to you! We had a nice ride on your money and hope you enjoy paying it back after we’re gone. Be assured it was all stuff we needed.

    46% combined for “health care” and “job and family security”!!! What??!! The federal gov’t shouldn’t be doing any of that. We can cut the budget in half tomorrow.

  • Porcell

    So, Obama’s website now tells us what our taxes are paying for. That information has been available for many years through the Congressional Budget Office

    What Obama’s website doesn’t reveal is the reality that in the three budgets years since 2009 Obama has increased spending over the past three fiscal years from from 19.6% of GDP in 2007 under Bush to an average of 24.4% at present.

    For an analysis of this see John Taylor’s recent article Obama’s Permanent Spending Binge including:

    Second, and perhaps even more striking, the chart shows that Mr. Obama, in his budget submitted in February, proposed to make that spending binge permanent. Spending would still be more than 24% of GDP at the end of the budget window in 2021. The administration revealed its preference in the February budget for a much higher level of government spending than the 18.2% of GDP in 2000 or the 19.6% in 2007.

    4% of our approximately $15 trillion GDP would be about a $600 billion a year,

    Obama is a died in the wool socialist who wishes in the long run through stealth tactics to replace the dominant private economy with a government one.

  • Porcell

    So, Obama’s website now tells us what our taxes are paying for. That information has been available for many years through the Congressional Budget Office

    What Obama’s website doesn’t reveal is the reality that in the three budgets years since 2009 Obama has increased spending over the past three fiscal years from from 19.6% of GDP in 2007 under Bush to an average of 24.4% at present.

    For an analysis of this see John Taylor’s recent article Obama’s Permanent Spending Binge including:

    Second, and perhaps even more striking, the chart shows that Mr. Obama, in his budget submitted in February, proposed to make that spending binge permanent. Spending would still be more than 24% of GDP at the end of the budget window in 2021. The administration revealed its preference in the February budget for a much higher level of government spending than the 18.2% of GDP in 2000 or the 19.6% in 2007.

    4% of our approximately $15 trillion GDP would be about a $600 billion a year,

    Obama is a died in the wool socialist who wishes in the long run through stealth tactics to replace the dominant private economy with a government one.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    “Obama is a died in the wool socialist who wishes in the long run through stealth tactics to replace the dominant private economy with a government one.”

    Agreed, so I’m learning to bake so I can wait in the grain lines instead of the bread lines…….(seriously, this guy worked on the South Side of Chicago 20 years and didn’t figure out that socialism wasn’t working?)

    To the point, though, the layout is interesting, but notice that he changes the headings to obscure what it’s really going to. It’s not “foreign aid,” but rather “international affairs” (wouldn’t that be if Bill were the Sec. of State?), and it’s not “welfare”, but rather “job and family security.”

    Quite Orwellian, really.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    “Obama is a died in the wool socialist who wishes in the long run through stealth tactics to replace the dominant private economy with a government one.”

    Agreed, so I’m learning to bake so I can wait in the grain lines instead of the bread lines…….(seriously, this guy worked on the South Side of Chicago 20 years and didn’t figure out that socialism wasn’t working?)

    To the point, though, the layout is interesting, but notice that he changes the headings to obscure what it’s really going to. It’s not “foreign aid,” but rather “international affairs” (wouldn’t that be if Bill were the Sec. of State?), and it’s not “welfare”, but rather “job and family security.”

    Quite Orwellian, really.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Bubba (@5), did you click on the little plus signs to expand each section? If you did, you’d realize that the “Job and Family Security” section comprises more than just “welfare”, and the “International Affairs” section comprises more than just “foreign aid”.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Bubba (@5), did you click on the little plus signs to expand each section? If you did, you’d realize that the “Job and Family Security” section comprises more than just “welfare”, and the “International Affairs” section comprises more than just “foreign aid”.

  • Porcell

    So, Todd, rather than enlightening us about the minor issue of the details of the plus signs, what is your view on the fundamental issue of Obama’s spending policy? Specifically, do you approve his taking of the per-centage of federal spending to GDP from 19.6% in 2007 under Bush to the present 24% projected to 2021.

    Bike is wise to improve his baking skills, though personally I’m stockpiling solid gold, traditionally the best hedge against the perfidy of foolish governments. Fortunately, I’m hedged even against gold in that my Swedish is a skilled baker.

  • Porcell

    So, Todd, rather than enlightening us about the minor issue of the details of the plus signs, what is your view on the fundamental issue of Obama’s spending policy? Specifically, do you approve his taking of the per-centage of federal spending to GDP from 19.6% in 2007 under Bush to the present 24% projected to 2021.

    Bike is wise to improve his baking skills, though personally I’m stockpiling solid gold, traditionally the best hedge against the perfidy of foolish governments. Fortunately, I’m hedged even against gold in that my Swedish is a skilled baker.

  • Porcell

    Pardon me, in the above I meant to say “my Swedish wife…”

  • Porcell

    Pardon me, in the above I meant to say “my Swedish wife…”

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Porcell (@7), I replied to the specific complaints Bubba made regarding the wording of the tax “receipt”, which is the topic under discussion here. If you have a problem with that, it is your own.

    Since federal spending as a percentage of GDP is not the topic at hand, nor one that I have addressed, nor one that I am interested in discussing right now, I do not choose to be sidetracked by it.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Porcell (@7), I replied to the specific complaints Bubba made regarding the wording of the tax “receipt”, which is the topic under discussion here. If you have a problem with that, it is your own.

    Since federal spending as a percentage of GDP is not the topic at hand, nor one that I have addressed, nor one that I am interested in discussing right now, I do not choose to be sidetracked by it.

  • Louis

    “Obama is a died in the wool socialist who wishes in the long run through stealth tactics to replace the dominant private economy with a government one.”

    Prove it. More to the point, prove that he “advocating public or common ownership and cooperative management of the means of production and allocation of resources.” – and not some of it, ALL of it.

    Really, ie don’t support his economic policies, but you folks have to realise that there is a whole damn sliding scale from “socialist” to “capitalist”, with a whole range of options in between. sure, he might be closer to the socialist end of the spectrum than say, Mitt Romney (only a bit), and a lot further than say Ron Paul, but he is a lot less socialist than say Chavez, or FD Roosevelt, or many others. One could argue that he is something of a Social Democrat-lite.

    But to ignorantly spout “end-member” terms like socialist, ignoring both reality as well as the proper meaning of the term, is more party-polical propaganda than anything else. Sometimes I feel that some of you here have an excellent view of their lungs from where they are.

    BTW, this is an ENTIRELY different debate than arguing the merits of his economic policy. I am personally not impressed by his policies, and view them as being unrealistic. But I could say the same about the majority of policies coming from current US politicians….

  • Louis

    “Obama is a died in the wool socialist who wishes in the long run through stealth tactics to replace the dominant private economy with a government one.”

    Prove it. More to the point, prove that he “advocating public or common ownership and cooperative management of the means of production and allocation of resources.” – and not some of it, ALL of it.

    Really, ie don’t support his economic policies, but you folks have to realise that there is a whole damn sliding scale from “socialist” to “capitalist”, with a whole range of options in between. sure, he might be closer to the socialist end of the spectrum than say, Mitt Romney (only a bit), and a lot further than say Ron Paul, but he is a lot less socialist than say Chavez, or FD Roosevelt, or many others. One could argue that he is something of a Social Democrat-lite.

    But to ignorantly spout “end-member” terms like socialist, ignoring both reality as well as the proper meaning of the term, is more party-polical propaganda than anything else. Sometimes I feel that some of you here have an excellent view of their lungs from where they are.

    BTW, this is an ENTIRELY different debate than arguing the merits of his economic policy. I am personally not impressed by his policies, and view them as being unrealistic. But I could say the same about the majority of policies coming from current US politicians….

  • Louis

    Thus endeth the rant for today….

  • Louis

    Thus endeth the rant for today….

  • Porcell

    Louis, the evidence for Obama’s socialist background has been richly detailed in Stanley Kurtz;s book Radical in Chief: Barack Obama and the Untold Story of American Socialism.

    I had been skeptical of the frequent allegations of Obama’s socialism until I recently read Kurtz;s thoroughly researched book. The truth is that Obama consistently from his school years when influenced by a Communist friend of his grandfather through college and community organizing, was a devoted socialist. In fact, community organizers were taught by Saul Alinsky’s rules for radicals to become community organizers and to disguise their true socialism in order by stealthy means to build a base for socialism. Once one understands this his presidential actions become transparent.

    One would have to read the book to really understand this, though a good introduction is Kurtz’s NRO article Obama’s Radical Past And his connection to socialism isn’t all ancient history, either. including:

    A loose accusation of his being a socialist has trailed Obama for years, but without real evidence that he saw himself as part of this radical tradition. But the evidence exists, if not in plain sight then in the archives — for example, the archived files of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), which include Obama’s name on a conference registration list. That, along with some misleading admissions in the president’s memoir, Dreams from My Father, makes it clear that Obama attended the 1983 and 1984 Socialist Scholars conferences, and quite possibly the 1985 conclave as well. A detailed account of these conferences (along with many other events from Obama’s radical past) and the evidence for Obama’s attendance at them can be found in my new book, Radical-in-Chief: Barack Obama and the Untold Story of American Socialism.

    Kurtz BTW has a PhD in Social Anthropology from Harvard; his book is loaded with careful quotes and footnote citations. He is a scholar, not a rough hewn polemicist.

  • Porcell

    Louis, the evidence for Obama’s socialist background has been richly detailed in Stanley Kurtz;s book Radical in Chief: Barack Obama and the Untold Story of American Socialism.

    I had been skeptical of the frequent allegations of Obama’s socialism until I recently read Kurtz;s thoroughly researched book. The truth is that Obama consistently from his school years when influenced by a Communist friend of his grandfather through college and community organizing, was a devoted socialist. In fact, community organizers were taught by Saul Alinsky’s rules for radicals to become community organizers and to disguise their true socialism in order by stealthy means to build a base for socialism. Once one understands this his presidential actions become transparent.

    One would have to read the book to really understand this, though a good introduction is Kurtz’s NRO article Obama’s Radical Past And his connection to socialism isn’t all ancient history, either. including:

    A loose accusation of his being a socialist has trailed Obama for years, but without real evidence that he saw himself as part of this radical tradition. But the evidence exists, if not in plain sight then in the archives — for example, the archived files of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), which include Obama’s name on a conference registration list. That, along with some misleading admissions in the president’s memoir, Dreams from My Father, makes it clear that Obama attended the 1983 and 1984 Socialist Scholars conferences, and quite possibly the 1985 conclave as well. A detailed account of these conferences (along with many other events from Obama’s radical past) and the evidence for Obama’s attendance at them can be found in my new book, Radical-in-Chief: Barack Obama and the Untold Story of American Socialism.

    Kurtz BTW has a PhD in Social Anthropology from Harvard; his book is loaded with careful quotes and footnote citations. He is a scholar, not a rough hewn polemicist.

  • steve

    What’s wrong with Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals? It’s on the National Education Association’s recommended reading list so it can’t be bad. Can it?

  • steve

    What’s wrong with Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals? It’s on the National Education Association’s recommended reading list so it can’t be bad. Can it?

  • steve

    I’m all for knowing where our tax money is spent but I wonder about the psychological consequences of reading that you paid x dollars into food stamp programs, school lunches, and housing assistance. Do you think people would be less likely to give charity if they see how much they’re already giving to the needy?

  • steve

    I’m all for knowing where our tax money is spent but I wonder about the psychological consequences of reading that you paid x dollars into food stamp programs, school lunches, and housing assistance. Do you think people would be less likely to give charity if they see how much they’re already giving to the needy?

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Steve asked (@14), “Do you think people would be less likely to give charity if they see how much they’re already giving to the needy?”

    To which my reply is: Do you think the government would have need to care for the needy if Christians were better about giving to charity?

    If your charitable giving is conditional on your tax burden, you’re doing it wrong.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Steve asked (@14), “Do you think people would be less likely to give charity if they see how much they’re already giving to the needy?”

    To which my reply is: Do you think the government would have need to care for the needy if Christians were better about giving to charity?

    If your charitable giving is conditional on your tax burden, you’re doing it wrong.

  • Louis

    Porcell, as I have not seen the book, I can’t comment, but I would say this, namely that when it comes to these type of issues, I’d like to see the judgement of a neutral party. When it comes politics, neither the words of supporters, or of detractors can be trusted at all.

    Also, socialist tendencies or sympathies does not mean one is a socialist. More so if those things pertain to one’s youth so-to-speak.

    Where is the evidence that Obama intends to nationalise everything in the US? No private companies, no private property. Because that is “died-in-the-wool”socialism.

  • Louis

    Porcell, as I have not seen the book, I can’t comment, but I would say this, namely that when it comes to these type of issues, I’d like to see the judgement of a neutral party. When it comes politics, neither the words of supporters, or of detractors can be trusted at all.

    Also, socialist tendencies or sympathies does not mean one is a socialist. More so if those things pertain to one’s youth so-to-speak.

    Where is the evidence that Obama intends to nationalise everything in the US? No private companies, no private property. Because that is “died-in-the-wool”socialism.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    tODD, actually I did expand the sections, and none of them explain what is going on in the usual terms we’d see in the papers. Hence I stand by my point; President Obama is doing a nasty bait and switch regarding what goes on, choosing as his headings not what the money is actually being spent for in terms of departments and programs, but rather choosing the nicest possible description of the programs as written by a party sycophant.

    Porcell, don’t forget other precious metals like brass, ordinance steel, and copper clad lead. Oh, and silver, too. :^)

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    tODD, actually I did expand the sections, and none of them explain what is going on in the usual terms we’d see in the papers. Hence I stand by my point; President Obama is doing a nasty bait and switch regarding what goes on, choosing as his headings not what the money is actually being spent for in terms of departments and programs, but rather choosing the nicest possible description of the programs as written by a party sycophant.

    Porcell, don’t forget other precious metals like brass, ordinance steel, and copper clad lead. Oh, and silver, too. :^)

  • Louis

    In the end, the problem with politicians is not that they are capitalist, or socialist, or anything of the kind. It is that they are really weak on math… :)

  • Louis

    In the end, the problem with politicians is not that they are capitalist, or socialist, or anything of the kind. It is that they are really weak on math… :)

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Bubba (@17) complains that the White House site doesn’t “explain what is going on in the usual terms we’d see in the papers”. Which is humorous — I love it when doctrinaire “conservatives” appeal to the mainstream media in their defense! Meanwhile, you seem to have missed that the groupings on that site explicitly refer to — and stem from — actual budget functions and subfunctions. Mouse over the individual lines and you’ll see them. Oh, but why let that get in the way of a good rant?

    Seriously, do you have an actual point, Bubba, or are you just ranting? Do you have any actual evidence to point to for your claim of “a nasty bait and switch”? Or that money is not “actually being spent” according to the categories listed? Because while you allege those things, the only evidence you’ve provided is that you personally don’t like the particular words used to describe categories. Which, you know, is somewhat different from their being actually deceptive.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Bubba (@17) complains that the White House site doesn’t “explain what is going on in the usual terms we’d see in the papers”. Which is humorous — I love it when doctrinaire “conservatives” appeal to the mainstream media in their defense! Meanwhile, you seem to have missed that the groupings on that site explicitly refer to — and stem from — actual budget functions and subfunctions. Mouse over the individual lines and you’ll see them. Oh, but why let that get in the way of a good rant?

    Seriously, do you have an actual point, Bubba, or are you just ranting? Do you have any actual evidence to point to for your claim of “a nasty bait and switch”? Or that money is not “actually being spent” according to the categories listed? Because while you allege those things, the only evidence you’ve provided is that you personally don’t like the particular words used to describe categories. Which, you know, is somewhat different from their being actually deceptive.