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by Noriel Roubini
Associate Professor Economics, NYU
02/09/05 -- "The dishonesty of the administration about budget deficits has reached levels unheard of. These folks have absolutely no shame. Bush presented a budget that claims that he will achieve his goal of reducing the deficit by half by 2008 (from a false
2004 baseline of $521 billion rather than the actual 2004 deficit of $412b) and will achieve a deficit of "only" $233b by 2009. Even better news, the administration claims: the "halving" of the deficit will be reached by 2008, a year earlier than original 2009 target for it.
Who are these accounting scam artists trying to deceive? Do they think everyone in America and around the world is a mathematically challenged total idiot or an accounting moron?"
"They may think that they can fool everyone, the taxpayers, the American people, the media, the bond markets, Wall Street and the disappearing bond vigilantes, the world, the central bankers of the world that have financed 90% of our budget deficits in the last four years and who would have to finance 100% of these ballooning budget deficits in the next decade. But they are only fooling themselves. No one is so dumb and idiotic to believe half of the damned lies they have been peddling in their budget. As a Bloomberg headline put it today, in the most understated terms: "Bush Fiscal Projections Questioned on Capitol Hill, Wall Street". Or, as the headline of the sharp Andrews article in the New York Times put it today: "Trim Deficit? Only if Bush Uses Magic"...Voodoo magic indeed!
Put it less politiely, this is not a budget, it is a multi-trillion dollar decade-long scam, a voodoo black magic to the power of two, the biggest Ponzi game in the financial history of humanity that would lead the US to certain bankruptcy by the next decade.