USAFacts: Steve Ballmer's Debuts New Site to Track Government Spending

  • USAFacts: Steve Ballmer's Debuts New Site to Track Government Spending

USAFacts: Steve Ballmer's Debuts New Site to Track Government Spending

As part of his audit and ongoing data collection, Ballmer launched USAFacts.org.

If we want to make better policy in America - if we want to avoid government shutdowns and make progress on the great challenges facing this country - policymakers and their constituents need to use USAFacts to ensure that our choices are more often rooted in data, evidence and a focus on results.

Her answer: "A, it won't, because there are things government doesn't get to, and B, you're missing it". And it was hard to find the numbers I was looking for. "I was hoping I could find something like a 10-K document. that the Securities and Exchange Commission makes companies create", he said during his talk. Ballmer joins "CBS This Morning" to discuss the first-of-its-kind project.

Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has launched a new project aimed at providing a comprehensive database of government revenue and spending.

Speaking to the Financial Times, Mr Ballmer said that he hoped the initiative would "help to depoliticise the partisan debate that we have". One challenge he's found from this is that the U.S. government can't legally collect data on how many firearms there are in the US. Keep in mind that government spending, revenue, and related data will always come down to numbers, numbers, and more numbers.

Instead, Ballmer said he turned to a world he knew well - the boardroom. After his retirement in 2014, he invested in Twitter and bought a United States basketball team, the LA Clippers, for $2 billion (£1.5 billion).

Just to skim the surface, here is an example of the elucidating drilldown-style statistics: In the year 2014 the USA government collected US$5.2 trillion in revenue and spent $5.4 trillion. Nearly half of them, Ballmer said, are employees in the education system.

"I love this one!" he said, showing me a slide of information about government employees. His team has produced a searchable website and multiple PowerPoint presentations, along with that 10-K Ballmer initially promised. "They are written without hyperbole and omission, because the SEC requires that - you are not allowed to pump yourself up or leave things out". On the other hand, we can tell you how many acres of land are in the national park system or managed by the National Forest Service. Ballmer continued. "Well, active-duty military, war fighters".

Ballmer explained to Bloomberg why he thinks making USAFacts.org is a good solution for promoting healthy political discourse, rather than polarization.