10 Essential Charts

Jobs and the economy are the big topics everywhere you go. Usually mentioned at the same time are topics like the role of the federal government to get out of the way or to attempt to stimulate the economy with larger government expenditures and, of course, the growing federal deficit.

The Pew Charitable Trusts launched a Pew Fiscal Analysis Initiative in April 2010 that compiles what they call the “10 Essential Fiscal Charts.”  They include:

  • Ten Years of Debt-Drivers
  • Debt Growth by Policy
  • Long-Term Unemployment
  • Federal Spending & Revenues
  • Debt Projections
  • Budget Control Act of 2011 Spending Caps
  • The Joint Select Committee
  • The Automatic Sequester
  • Debt Ceiling Scenarios
  • The Debt Limit and the American Jobs Act of 2011

They are attempting to show what impact public policies over the past ten are having on national debt. I’m still studying them but can report that some of them are eye-popping. The most alarming to me was the huge jump in Federal outlays and tax expenditures as a Percent of GDP. It has jumped from 18 percent is fiscal year 2001 to 24 percent in fiscal year 2011.