Good work, Republicans. Your tax cuts may not have done much for the non-luxury-yacht economy, but you’ve dropped one hell of a bomb on everything else.
Within a decade, more than $900 billion in interest payments [on government debt] will be due annually, easily outpacing spending on myriad other programs. Already the fastest-growing major government expense, the cost of interest is on track to hit $390 billion next year, nearly 50 percent more than in 2017, according to the Congressional Budget Office.
We’ll soon be spending more on interest than on the military, and that’s not because we’re going to be cutting the military. It goes without saying that the interest payments far outpace spending on things like Medicare or, say, feeding children, and it is being exacerbated in large part by new Republican tax cuts for the wealthy that next year will boost the deficit alone to near $1 trillion.
Curiously, the same Republicans who were wetting their national pants over deficits during the Obama presidency and demanding a “sequester” of the national budget are nowhere to be found now. It’s likely that House Speaker Paul Ryan won’t be mentioning deficits again until he lands his next job at whatever conservative think tank is willing to pay him the most cash, come next January-ish, upon which he will have a raging fit over how the catastrophic debt level caused by the budgets he passed now means we need to round up the elderly and turn them into soup.
This is, after all, the Republican playbook. First, massive deficits are created by Republican policies; second, Republicans claim the massive deficits require cutting everything that Republicans don’t like, like Social Security, Medicare, and food stamps. It’s all going according to plan—but Republicans are going to wait until after the midterms to unveil round two.
This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.