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Willisms

« Trivia Tidbit of the Day: Part 536 -- SCHIP (Socialized Children's Health Insurance Program). | WILLisms.com | Social Security Reform Thursday: Part 78 -- Eating Social Security's Seed Corn. »

Trivia Tidbit of the Day: Part 537 -- Military Spending Not Exclusively Responsible For Massive Spending Surge.

Post-9/11 Defense Spending Increased, But Auto-Pilot Entitlement Growth Was Bulk Of Increased Spending Under Bush-

The Bush administration clearly had an unsuccessful second term.

The first term was top quartile material; the second term, not so much. It may have even been bottom quartile material.

One criticism I see from the left and right alike is that Bush was a big spender. From the right, it's that he didn't veto enough items and let pork get out of control. Occasionally, you'll also hear about the prescription drug benefit in Medicare. From the left, it's almost always that he spent way too much on Iraq and the War On Terror, so we "neglected" domestic social spending.

So, what about that? Was the War On Terror the primary driver of spending under the Bush administration?

No.

Auto-pilot entitlement spending increases drove higher spending, not military spending (courtesy of the Heritage Foundation):

nationalsecurity.gif

Defense spending went up, to be sure, and went up a lot. But it is still historically low. The big three of entitlement spending (Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security) drove the overwhelming bulk of spending hikes during the two terms of the Bush administration.

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Previous Trivia Tidbit: SCHIP.

Posted by Will Franklin · 19 February 2009 10:13 AM

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