Welfare spending is the LARGEST item in the federal budget.


Liberals and libertarians constantly decry defense spending as excessive and single it out for reductions. Yet, defense spending is microscopic compared to welfare spending.

Today, welfare spending is the largest item in the federal budget, standing at $888 bn out of the $3.6 trillion of the federal budget, that is, almost 25% of it.

The $888 bn sum represents ALL federal welfare programs, but doesn’t include non-welfare-programs (and therefore doesn’t include the SS program nor the Medicare program).

These 70 welfare programs are spread among 14 different federal agencies.

When Bush left office, annual federal welfare spending was already gargantuan – $522 bn – and was larger than Bush’s last defense budget ($512 bn in 2008 dollars, which is $517 bn in today’s dollars). But Obama significantly increased welfare spending – by $366 bn by FY2010, that is, more than 50%.

Already during FY2009, Obama increased welfare spending to $697 bn – by $255 bn, i.e. 48.85% – but now, welfare spending is even higher ($888 bn per annum).

The $366 bn welfare spending growth since January 2009 is the largest welfare spending increase ever. And yet, even though welfare spending is the largest cause of America’s budget deficits and America’s debt, Obama intends to continue to grow it. He plans to spend $1 trillion per annum on welfare programs by FY2014 and has set a plan for the federal, state and local governments to spend $10.3 trillion on welfare programs during the next several decades. Of that sum, $7.5 trillion is to be spent by the federal government itself, and $2.8 trillion by state governments as a result of federal diktats.


1) Since LBJ began the “War on Poverty”, the federal government has spent $15.9 TRILLION (in 2009 dollars) on welfare programs. (By contrast, the combined cost of every war America has ever fought, including the Revolutionary War, was $6.4 trillion in 2009 dollars.)

2) Welfare spending has always been the fastest-growing part of federal spending. It has grown by 292% (yes, by 292 percent) since 1989, while the SS program and the Medicare program have grown by 213% since 1989.

3) In 1965, welfare spending was only 1.2% of GDP. Today, it accounts for 5.92% of GDP, while defense spending stands at a meagre 3.56% of GDP.

4) Obama’s FY2010 welfare spending ($888 bn) is larger than the entire sum spent on the Iraqi war than the Bush Admin ($622 bn).

5) Already as of FY2000, welfare spending cost over 4% of America’s GDP (while Clinton deliberately kept defense spending at 3% of GDP, the lowest level since FY1941). During the Bush era, welfare spending was always higher than ANY other item in the federal budget except the SS program.

6) As of 7th March 2001, federal welfare spending cost 4.4% of GDP.

7) The welfare spending level as of 2000 was $434 bn in 2000 dollars, that is, $549.88 bn in FY2010 dollars. This sum is larger than the defense budget of FY2000, the defense budget for the current fiscal year ($534 bn), and the proposed defense budget for FY2011 ($547 bn). Of course, the FY2010 welfare spending level is not $434 bn, it is $888 bn.

During the 1990s, there was a much-vaunted, but minor, welfare roll reform, which reformed only ONE of the 70 federal welfare programs, namely the “Aid for Families with Dependent Children” program (and that reform was abolished by Obama’s stimulus package). The other 69 federal welfare programs remain unreformed to this day. None of these 70 programs were ever abolished.

The US Census Bureau constantly lies, “Oh my goodness, we have 40 million poor people. We need to spend more money.” and claims that “poverty levels” are high. But it counts only 4% of welfare spending as income.

One of the reasons why welfare costs are so high is that there are many single mothers in the US. Almost all single mothers are dependent on welfare programs. These single mothers alone get welfare rolls worth $350 bn per year. Last year, 41% of all newborn American kids were born out of wedlock. (By comparison, as of 1963, 93% of newborn American kids were born to married parents.) Of course, 70% of unmarried single women voted for Obama, because they always vote for the guy who offers the biggest giveaways.

Another reason is the ethos. Before the 1960s, troubled individuals applied to their local government or to a private charity (e.g. the Salvation Army). A downtrodden individual had to explain how he got into trouble and how he intended to rescue himself from it. He was monitored to ensure that he wasn’t lying. Welfare program costs were relatively small. Today, with minimal qualifications, you can receive welfare rolls if you’re willing to bother to come to your mailbox once a month.

Before the 1960s, welfare programs were seldom talked about, because they weren’t compelling issues. They were small programs operated by local governments, and were available only to truly downtrodden individuals. Today, the welfare state is a national scandal. Obama has hiked welfare spending to $888 bn per year during just 16 months, and there is a permanent dependency class.

Yet, politicians (Democrats and Republicans alike) are refusing to reduce welfare spending. They seldom even talk about it. Instead, they are working to cut the meagre defense budget in order to maintain and expand federal welfare programs. Recently, a panel of pacifists convened by Congressman Barney Frank of MA called for $1 trillion defense spending cuts – which means a total abolition of the US military for 2 fiscal years. Obama proposes to reduce defense spending by FY2012 by $92 bn, to a meagre level of $457 bn, while he continues to increase welfare spending so that the welfare bums who voted him into office will vote for his Congressional allies.

Why do politicians continue to sabotage America’s defense while increasing (rather than reducing) welfare programs?

Because these programs have an entire dependency class that lives off them, depends on them (and therefore on the federal government, which wants as many people as possible to be dependent on it, so that it can manage them like puppets), and is not willing to surrender them. This dependency class will vote out of office any politician who proposes to reduce (or eliminate) welfare programs.

On the other hand, defense has very few defenders (myself an a few other people) and no constituency to defend it. That’s why for the last 57 years politicians have been shamelessly using the DOD as a piggy bank to finance their bloated, unjustified, unnecessary domestic programs while lying that the defense budget is “profligate”.

The sources:



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12 thoughts on “Welfare spending is the LARGEST item in the federal budget.”

  1. I wanna see where you claim that the DOD budget is Microscopic? I wanna see you learn how to use HTML and produce a blog with proper grammar.

    Which Agencies and which programs are you claiming are WELFARE programs?

    “The $888 bn sum represents ALL federal welfare programs, but doesn’t include non-welfare-programs (and therefore doesn’t include the SS program nor the Medicare program). These 70 welfare programs are spread among 14 different federal agencies.”

    Because the DOD budget is close to half of the Budget. Which your claim is that the Defense budget is MICROSCOPIC. Microscopic means one million times smaller than the smallest part. Which would mean that the Defense budget is less than one Millionth of a percent.

    You don’t even have accurate figures. This was all made up and you probably don’t even know it. You are listening to people that refuse to look at the budget.

    The budget in America is an act of LAW. Every state, even the government has to publish an act of law, “to Pass the budget.”
    Why not actually look at the budget sometime, you might be actually surprised.

    You are not even college educated. You refuse to pay taxes. Look I get a lot of money from the Federal government to go to school. Because they know that I am not only going to pay the loans back, but I will become a higher tax contributer.

    Those who pay their taxes know this and is why I get the money.

    You could never compete with me accademicly. I have an A average, I publish my essays and I am world renown in my field.

    And that is the Point buster. That you are simply not as valuable as I am. You are stupid. You will never prove your worth. You simply cannot compete with this Street Kid. This homeless curmudeon. It’s funny how you think I owe you something.

    Your ancestors stole the very land from my ancestors. Your ancestors enslaved people because they could not work the fields. And neighter can you. Sure you have a lot of money. But it’s stolen.

    You could not work those fields, you could not build a house. And you definately can’t install fiber optics like I do. There are very few that can. And with the amount I will be proud to pay in Taxes will open it up again to people like me that can’t afford college but can pass the muster.

    I laugh at you.

    If you went to school, you’d never even be able to put a computer togeather from it’s component parts.

    You were spoon feed and it shows. Suck it down thief.

    You just aren’t a contributer. You are an idiot and we should deport you to South Africa, where you would fit in really nice working in the coal mine, because that is about all the good you do here.

    What you are really mad at is that you aren’t as much of a person as I am. The little gutter punk. The street kid, that grew up in Squats and was bullied by kids like you… Then when I beat you up, I get suspended. It’s okay for you to be abusive, but when I get revenge, I get the full extent of the law down on me.

    Too bad you wont show up to court, because you don’t want to answer to your bullying.

    Tell you what when your Mortage falls through, I am going to buy your house. Then I am going to let you sleep in a tent in the back yard.

    You are just a little spoiled kid that is imbred and stupid. You are definately a LEGACY. More like a Dinosaur going extinct. Your kind of people are decended from the kings. You hate democracy. You hate equal rights, you hate gay marriage, you hate freedom of religion, you hate people that are different.

    You want to rule the world. But you couldn’t keep it if you had it. That’s why you have to lie, slander, slave and steal to get what you have.

    Buddy, I am just going to take back what’s mine. You leave, you are the one that hates America. If you believe that no one should have publicly funded education, that religious freedom only means Christians, that only white men should vote, that people should be enslaved…

    Move to Africa. There are many kings there that feel the same way, only they are black. LOL.

    1. Your grammar, spelling and writing style are very revealing. I doubt you qualify to flip burgers.

    2. Defense budget is only 20% of budget. I ONLY WISH its more, because the purpose of the Federal government is defense and national security spending…

  2. I get mad evertime I see Social Security, and Medicare associated with Welfare. Most of the people in
    these programs have and still pay out the nose. These programs should be called entitlements. Welfare
    is where something is all take and no give.

  3. The following website allows you to break the federal budget down not only to the generally named categories (i.e., “welfare”), but to open up the sub-categories to see which programs seem to belong to what people normally think of as “welfare” and those which people don’t.


    Using FY2011, here are the largest program budgets, *excluding* SS (which is not paid by the federal budget but by its own payroll taxes) and Medicare / Medicaid.

    $774 billion

    Interest on all Treasury programs
    $235 billion

    Veterans Assistance
    $150 billion

    $120 billion

    Food Stamps
    $100 billion

    Education K-12
    $80 billion

    All Mortgage Support programs
    $60 billion

    Foreign aid (military $10B/economic $40B)
    $50 billion

    Disability (SSI)
    $50 billion

    Federal Law Enforcement & Courts
    $50 billion

    Federal Highways
    $35 billion

    “Section 8” aid for rental housing
    $20 billion

    Agricultural aid/support
    $20 billion

    “Welfare” (TANF)
    $17 billion

    Children’s Health Insurance Program
    $10 billion

    Other people can make their own judgments on how to divide up the budget sub-categories.

    1. I WISH our Military was around $774 Billion. The DOD budget is still less than $600 Billion… according to government sources.

  4. I find you posted in accurate numbers. Defense spending has increased more than social programs (100%) in the last decade. Also defense spending is larger than social programs ($1T-$1.5T) annually.

    1. You are wrong.

      America’s defense budget is NOT $1T nor $1.5T per year. The total military budget amounts to $645 bn per year. That’s the figure for this year, for trhe next FY2013 the Administration is requesting only $614 bn.

      The base defense budgethas increased only by 35% since FY2001. Even the total military budget has grown by only about 61% since FY2001, and that growth has occurred over a decade.

    2. You are wrong.

      America’s defense budget is NOT $1T nor $1.5T per year. The total military budget amounts to $645 bn per year. That’s the figure for this year, for the next FY2013 the Administration is requesting only $614 bn.

      The base defense budget has increased only by 35% since FY2001. Even the total military budget has grown by only about 61% since FY2001, and that growth has occurred over a decade.

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