The numbers could hardly be more stark: Tax receipts are on pace to drop 18 percent this year, the biggest single-year decline since the Great Depression, while the federal deficit balloons to a record $1.8 trillion.
Other figures in an Associated Press analysis underscore the recession's impact: Individual income tax receipts are down 22 percent from a year ago. Corporate income taxes are down 57 percent. Social Security tax receipts could drop for only the second time since 1940, and Medicare taxes are on pace to drop for only the third time ever.
The last time the government's revenues were this bleak, the year was 1932 in the midst of the Depression.
Just as George W. Bush saw his presidency defined by the unforeseen events of the 911 razzia, Barack Obama will see his presidency defined by the unforeseen events and the unintended consequences of the federal economic policies that have given us this recession. He will not have the revenue to implement his policies. Not only are the costs and demographics of today's Medicare and Social Security boondoggles conspiring against it, but the people at large are coming unglued, in open rebellion against the arrogance of the government confiscators. To cut costs overseas, the president is frantically working to mollify the vanguard of Islamic Imperialism and our nearer Marxist enemies while backing away from past principles, commitments and alliances in order to convert the expenses to domestic use. It's not working. Obama's strategic goals will be undone by his own tactics and legislative timing. This is what comes of inexperience and cockiness and a lack of seriousness, and for that we are lucky. Internationally, he is stumbling and the harder and faster he tries to ram his objectives through at home by attempting to create a sense of urgency for them, the less he is trusted--by anyone.
Bills in Congress passed unread,
Disquiet in the land grows and spreads,
As tax reports are held to wait
In hopes that congress votes then skates.
But the haste of July sighs and lapses
As Blue Dogs' confidence collapses
Then August dawns with revenue falling
Obama's month for truths appalling.