As the chart above shows, since 1950, tax revenues have been remarkably stable. Despite endless machinations, reforms, tweaks to the tax code, new breaks, tax hikes and tax cuts, tax revenues as a share of the total economy (called gross domestic product, or GDP) have stuck steadily at right around 18 percent.
What has changed is spending.
As the poster notes, the entire federal budget did not reach $1 trillion until 1987. This week, the federal deficit topped $1 trillion, with three months still left in the fiscal year. Even those on the federal deficit commission ought to be able to figure out what the problem is.