The Obama administration has kept its promise to cut spending by slicing $100 million from the 2009 budget.
The trouble is that $100 million is an "imponderably small" percentage of this year's expenditures, which have soared, according to an editorial in Investor's Business Daily.
President Obama made clear that cutting out waste was part of his mission to make the investments necessary for economic recovery. Agency department heads were poised to identify at least $100 million in additional cuts to their administrative budgets.
The cuts were done, but now the deficit will be $1.79999 trillion rather than $1.8 trillion, the editors note.
For fiscal 2009, the U.S. federal government will spend nearly $4 trillion, according to the Office of Management and Budget.
"The $100 million cut represents 0.0025 percent — less than one one-hundredth of 1 percent — of those outlays," say the daily paper’s editors.
"The cut is almost as piddling as a portion of the 2009 deficit, which the White House and Congress have already quadrupled in six months. It represents a little more than 0.005 percent of a shortfall that is itself staggering."
Harvard economist Greg Mankiw, chairman of President Bush's Council of Economic Advisors, comments that cutting that much to help close the deficit is like a family that spends $100,000 a year trying to plug a $34,000 shortfall by buying one less latte a year.
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