Stanford University economics professor John Taylor has an illuminating chart tracking federal spending as a percentage of GDP and proposing what he calls a "pro-growth budget." Somehow this spending piece of the federal budget problem seems to be getting a lot less attention in the press than the "tax the rich more" piece, though three noteworthy exceptions are a front-page New York Times article today that runs under the headline "Efforts To Curb Social Spending Face Resistance," a National Affairs article by David Armor and Sonia Sousa estimating that the government could save $167.8 billion a year simply by limiting spending on anti-poverty programs such as food stamps and Medicaid to families who earn no more than 130% of the federal poverty line, and a Wall Street Journal editorial today that says:
The one thing Republicans shouldn't do is join the media and Democratic chorus that Mr. Norquist and his pledge are the root of our political and economic woes. The real problems are a political class that won't control its spending and economic policies that are retarding growth. That's where the GOP should keep its public focus.