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The federal budget not only clarifies how we spend our money, it also reflects our national priorities. “Don’t tell me what your priorities are. Show me where you spend your money and I’ll tell you what they are.” In other words, talk is cheap. We can say we care about children and education, but is that where we invest our money?
This graph separates federal income tax dollars from the dedicated payroll taxes that go to Social Security and Medicare Part A. (For the total federal spending pie chart, see my recent diary: http://www.dailykos.com/...)
As you can see, in fiscal year 2013 only 2% of Federal spending went to Education. Meanwhile, a staggering 27% went to Military and another 5% went to interest on the military portion of the debt. There is even more military-related spending tucked away in other buckets like Veterans Programs, FBI, Homeland Security, Dept of Energy, NASA and International Affairs.
We do spend another huge chunk on Health, with almost half of that going to Medicare doctor and prescription drug payments not covered by Medicare’s payroll tax or enrollee premiums. Health spending is also a reflection of our enormously expensive, inefficient and fragmented healthcare system: http://www.connectthedotsusa.com/...
Get a receipt on your own federal income taxes here: http://nationalpriorities.org/...
For Form 1040, use line 61 (but subtract any self-employment tax on line 56 since this is payroll tax not income tax).
You can also get a receipt here: http://www.whitehouse.gov/...
Percentages vary a bit from the National Priorities’ receipt because of differences in how govt functions might be categorized.
Do the results surprise you? Do they reflect your Priorities?