Obamatons speak to David Brooks

You can read their account of what is going on, as filtered through Brooks.  Excerpt:

…they argue…the Obama administration will not usher in an era of big
government. Federal spending over the last generation has been about 20
percent of G.D.P. This year, it has surged to about 27 percent. But
they aim to bring spending down to 22 percent of G.D.P. in a few years.
And most of the increase, they insist, is caused by the aging of the
population and the rise of mandatory entitlement spending. It’s not
caused by big increases in the welfare state.

The White House
has produced a chart showing nondefense discretionary spending as a
share of G.D.P. That’s spending for education, welfare and all the
stuff that Democrats love. Since 1985, this spending has hovered around
3.7 percent of G.D.P. This year, it’s about 4.6 percent. The White
House claims that it is going to reduce this spending to 3.1 percent by
2019, lower than at any time in any recent Republican administration. I
was invited to hang this chart on my wall and judge them by how well
they meet these targets. (I have.)


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