In a discussion with some friends we started talking about spending and which Presidents, Party, and time periods had the most and least. One of the factors I thought important was to adjust the total Federal Spending for inflation.
From the OMB the total outlay number was obtained. The CPI number was found on the Bureau of Labor Statistics website. Then it was easy to adjust the total outlay number and reduce or increase it based on the CPI. Remember the US experienced deflation back in the 1920's and 30's.
The blue line is the inflation adjusted number and uses the right y scale. The purple line is the actual spending and uses the left y scale.
A few things were surprising to me. The US really cut spending back dramatically at the end of WWII. There was no delay at all!
Then using those same numbers, I took the amount of decrease/increase by President for their term. To be fair that number was divided by the number of years they were in office. These numbers were surprising to me. I always thought Reagan was going to be much higher because of the large deficits he ran, but, it shows his deficits were caused by tax cuts more than increased spending.
Carter, Clinton, Nixon, Eisenhower, Bush I, Coolidge, Truman, and Harding were the winners in keeping spending in check. W, Hoover, Wilson, and Roosevelt were the big spenders though Wilson had WW I to deal with and Roosevelt had WW II.
The increase in real dollars must stop. The graphs clearly show that even adjusting for inflation gov't spending is on an upward trend that is unsustainable. As much as I want universal health care in the US, doing it the way being proposed and increasing the deficit another trillion is wrong.
One item that neither party even talks about is defense spending. We must cut defense spending too! Why is defense spending so sacred?