You'd Be In Big Trouble If You Spent Like Uncle Sam

How big? A $147,631 credit card balance and growing

It’s hard for taxpayers to fathom that our federal government will spend $3,318,636,000,000 in the current fiscal year, or as it is often expressed, $3.3 trillion.

So some analysts found a way to put the level of deficit spending in perspective by converting current budget numbers provided by the federal Office of Management and Budget into the same scale as a household budget. The income and spending were scaled down to something middle class Americans could better grasp. And the overspending was “put on the credit card.” Income, revenue and overspending were all in the same proportion to each other as in the federal budget.

First, here are the federal numbers this year, according to OMB projections:

- Revenue: $2,816,874,000,000;

- Expenditures: $3,318,636,000,000;

- Annual debt increase: $501,762,000,000; and

- Total debt: $14,763,197,000,000.

And here’s what it looks like if the federal budget is converted into a household scale:

- Annual family income: $28,168;

- Family spending: $33,186;

- New debt added to credit card this year: $5,017; and

- Outstanding balance on credit card: $147,631.

Note: The two Social Security trust funds and the U.S. Postal Service are not included in the budgetary numbers.