Over the past 8 years since the Bush tax cuts went into effect, even with the recession, Federal revenues increased 21.42%. But during that same time period, Congress increased spending by 72.27%. The United States Government doesn’t have a tax receipt problem, it has an out-of-control spending problem.
The so-called “Bush Tax Cuts” were effective fiscal tax year 2003. In that year, government tax receipts stood at $1,783 billion. In 2010, government tax receipts are estimated to be at $2,165 billion, an increase of 21.42% despite the worst recession in 70 years. Had we not run into the recession, receipts were much higher in each year following the tax cuts, rising to a peak of $2,568 billion in 2007 before the proverbial *ahem* hit the fan in 2008.
If you adjust for the recession, a truly once-in-a-few-generation event, the results of the Bush tax cuts are even more impressive because they caused government tax receipts, or revenue, to increase a staggering 26.34% in only five short tax years. That is stellar performance for the largest economy on the planet.
Over that time period, what did Congress do with all of this fresh cash flowing into Washington, D.C.? Did it pay down the debt so we could strengthen programs such as Social Security over the long-term? No. It increased spending from $2,160 billion to $3,721 billion, or 72.27%.
Take a look for yourself (the amounts in the chart are in billions of U.S. dollars):
This is why I have no sympathy for people who say they want to increase taxes on the rich. If it were necessary, like in World War II, that would be one thing. But instead the government merely wants to confiscate money from productive doctors, lawyers and accountants and shove it into their pet projects, defense department, and other expenditures with absolutely no accountability.
Oh, and these same politicians kept their gilt-edged health care benefits, compensation increases, and generous pension benefits as they charged them to our kids and grandkids, who will have to pay the interest with their tax dollars instead of seeing the money invested in better schools or programs.