Chart of the Day: Reducing the Federal Deficit

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Via Plain Blog, this is from a poll conducted by Emily Swanson and Mark Blumenthal:

According to a new HuffPost/YouGov poll, 69 percent of Americans think that most of the federal budget deficit could be eliminated by cutting “waste and fraud.”

Um, what? More than two-thirds of Americans think the budget deficit is largely a result of waste and fraud? But wait! It’s all explained by a deeper dive into the poll results:

A more detailed look at which programs were named by Democrats and by Republicans suggests that for many, waste is indeed defined as “money spent on some government program I don’t like.”

So there you have it. By logical concatenation, two-thirds of the American public think the budget deficit could be tamed largely by cutting spending on programs they don’t like. That’s a little more defensible. Now all we have to do is figure out which programs a majority of us don’t like.1

1Hint: There aren’t any.

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We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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