U.S. Debt and Deficits: Time to Reverse the Trend

Milken Institute White Paper, November 2011

12 Pages Posted: 30 Nov 2011 Last revised: 22 May 2012

See all articles by James R. Barth

James R. Barth

Auburn University; Milken Institute

Tong Li

Milken Institute

Date Written: May 2012

Abstract

With the failure of the Congressional "supercommittee," national attention is once more focused on the issue of ever-mounting federal budget deficits. This paper provides a primer on budget deficits, and surpluses from the creation of the federal government. From 1790 to 2010, government spending averaged 8.7 percent of GDP; today it is 25 percent, fueling debt of historic levels. The only meaningful solution to reducing debt levels, the authors argue, is to cut entitlement programs, and then set a tax rate sufficient over the course of the business cycle to fund government spending.

Suggested Citation

Barth, James R. and Li, Tong, U.S. Debt and Deficits: Time to Reverse the Trend (May 2012). Milken Institute White Paper, November 2011, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1966616 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1966616

James R. Barth

Auburn University ( email )

415 West Magnolia Avenue
Auburn, AL 36849
United States
334-844-2469 (Phone)
334-844-4960 (Fax)

Milken Institute ( email )

1250 Fourth Street
Santa Monica, CA 90401
United States

Tong Li (Contact Author)

Milken Institute ( email )

1250 Fourth Street
Santa Monica, CA 90401
United States
310-570-4655 (Phone)
310-570-4625 (Fax)

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
115
Abstract Views
843
rank
296,674
PlumX Metrics