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March 27, 2015

Budget Showdowns Haven’t Changed Size of Government

Washington Post: “After 2 1/2 years of budget battles, this is what the federal government looks like now: It is on pace, this year, to spend $3.455 trillion.”

“That figure is down from 2010 — the year that worries about government spending helped bring on a tea party uprising, a Republican takeover in the House and then a series of ulcer-causing showdowns in Congress. But it is not down by that much. Back then, the government spent a whopping $3.457 trillion.”

“Measured another way — not in dollars, but in people — the government has about 4.1 million employees today, military and civilian. That’s more than the populations of 24 states. Back in 2010, it had 4.3 million employees. More than the populations of 24 states.”

  • tom

    Let’s see if I understand what you just stated correctly – please let me know if I’m correct.

    Federal spending essentially held constant from 2010 to mid-2012. Measured against inflation (the only honest way to judge this), a drop of about 6%.

    “Measured another way – not dollars, but people” – federal employment fell from 4.5 to 4.3 million from 2010 to mid-2012. A drop of about 5%.

    That’s less than 2.5% of the population of the largest 10 states.

    Isn’t writing with a slant fun!

    • Nosh_72

      Hmm that is what I was thinking. . .

  • OhWelll

    Is this opinion or opinion being passed off as news? The biggest increases are with entitlements, while the discretionary budget has shrunk.

    In 1962, discretionary spending was 12.7% of GDP, with defense spending making up 9.3% of GDP. In 2012, discretionary spending was 8.3% of GDP, with defense spending (including war) totaling 4.3% of GDP. Not as dramatic if you look at it this way.

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