President Obama wants you to spend $131 a month on defense, $30 to help veterans and $19 for education and job training.

You hear the budget described in billions and trillions.

But taking the typical household income and tax return, you can compare how you choose to spend your own money versus how the feds choose to spend your chunk of federal taxes. These figures are based on a household with about $64,000 in income.

So if that's your household, you spend the biggest chunk of your money on housing, transportation and food. Of the $550 monthly budget for food, families typically spend about 60 percent at home and 40 percent out, but it's the family that makes those choices. Families spend a little over $200 a month on movie tickets, music, sports and other entertainment, a little more than $150 on donations and more than $130 on clothes.


Meanwhile, Obama and Congress send $176 of your dollars to seniors receiving Social Security, $109 for support of the poor and unemployed. You spend $107 monthly for medical care of seniors and the disabled, $45 to pay for debt.

You spend $7 on the environment, $6 for science and space and research, $9 on world affairs and about the cost of a big cup of fancy coffee on farms and farmers.


The figures cited here are based on the current-year federal fiscal budget.  The numbers requested by Obama today might change it slightly, but not significantly, and we won't know the full changes for months when Congress does something.   And we know the government's budget and your household budget are not the same thing.  Nevertheless, this gives you some context while the federal budget is being debated. You can compare how you choose to spend your money with how the politicians divide it up.