Thursday, February 04, 2010

Chart of the Day

UPDATE: below

From CATO's Chris Edwards:


source: CATO, Five Decades of Federal Spending

Edwards explains:
After a steady decline during the Clinton years to 12.9 percent of GDP, President Bush pushed up nondefense spending to a higher plateau of around 14.5 percent. Then came the recession and financial crisis, and the Bush-Obama tag team hiked spending to an even higher level of around 19 percent of GDP. That level of nondefense spending is almost double the level in 1970 measured as a share of the economy.
Agreed.

See also Tuesday's Washington Times:
The era of big government has returned with a vengeance, in the form of the largest federal work force in modern history.

The Obama administration says the government will grow to 2.15 million employees this year, topping 2 million for the first time since President Clinton declared that "the era of big government is over" and joined forces with a Republican-led Congress in the 1990s to pare back the federal work force.
MORE:

In answer to OBH's question in comments, from page 99 of President Obama's 2011 budget:


source: OMB, 2011 Budget, Chart 10-1
(via Instapundit)

3 comments:

OBloodyHell said...

> The Obama administration says the government will grow to 2.15 million employees this year, topping 2 million for the first time since President Clinton declared that "the era of big government is over" and joined forces with a Republican-led Congress in the 1990s to pare back the federal work force.


Ummm, this isn't the metric that ought to be used for this, you know.

The real question is (and I suspect the answer will be the same, but it's still potentially disingenuous as-is) How does the population compare as a percentage of the work force?

Much as the deficit metric ought to be based on %GDP, so, too, should the fed employer metric be tied to total working population.

This sort of number is subject to abuse, such as what the Left was doing when they were citing raw unemployment numbers under Bush while ignoring that the population has gone up over the last "x" years since those numbers were equivalent, and thus the "record numbers" in fact weren't even overly high as a percentage of workforce.

OBloodyHell said...

So it's not substantially greater than at any time since the beginning of WWII....?

Not exactly an indictment, though a substantial uptick isn't a Good Thing if that's what happens.

Carl said...

OBH, you may be right, though see this:

"[T]he past year and a half has been a great period to be a federal government employee. While the private sector has shed almost 6.4 million jobs on a seasonally adjusted basis during that time, federal non-postal employment has leaped by over 150,000, a stunning increase of over 7.5%. Two-thirds of the increase occurred during the first eleven full months of the Obama administration, even though the severity of the recession was drop-dead obvious well before he took office."