We’re Almost Done With Deficit Reduction!

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis and more, subscribe to Mother Jones' newsletters.


The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities has taken a look at projected future deficits and concludes that we need an additional $1.4 trillion in savings in order to stabilize the debt/GDP ratio at 73 percent by 2022. The chart on the right tells the story.

What’s really so striking about this is what they say after diving a little further into the numbers. If we split this equally between spending cuts and tax increases, we need about $600 billion of each. (The rest comes from interest savings.) That’s $60 billion per year. Or, if we did things rationally, it would come to zero dollars this year, increasing to perhaps $100 billion in 2022. For all the hue and cry from both sides, this is really not a huge amount of money. And if we did it, it would amount to total deficit reduction of nearly $4 trillion over the past couple of years.

This isn’t necessarily what I’d do if I were your benevolent overlord. But it’s hardly the end of the world as a baseline plan for now. After all, we can always change it in a few years if we don’t like how things are turning out.

THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.