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The CBO Fesses Up – “We Suck at Predictions” November 21, 2015

Posted by geoff in News.
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[I may have paraphrased that quote a bit]

You asked for debacles, Theo; I give you the CBO.

the-uncertainty-of-longterm-budget-projections-12-638

Yes, that chart shows that the best-case scenario has us never reducing the federal debt, while the nominal scenario sees it increase by almost 50% over the next 25 years.

I don’t want to even think about the worst-case scenario.

But why do I call it a “debacle?” Well, for starts, the CBO’s predictions are always optimistic (they were predicting budget surpluses by the end of Bush’s 2nd term), and they always assume that Congress will do the right thing.

But the real reason is because when your accuracy is that poor, you shouldn’t even publish the results.  It just gives people the false impression that things are under control.

As an aside, I don’t really understand this chart. We ran a $440 billion deficit in 2015, but the chart shows no change in debt from 2014. Someday, when I have extra time, I’ll have to find out why that is.

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