Statist Stasis

A must-read piece from Nick Gillespie, linked over at Instapundit and other fine establishments:

Until we face up to the three large truths about the current moment outlined above, it's hard to see how our country, our states, and our cities can move into better positions regarding their balance sheets. More importantly, it's hard to see how we can rebuild not just the economy of the moment but of the future if we don't grapple with what's gone on at all levels of government: a bi-partisan disaster that replaced any and all notions of public thrift and accountability with entitlement giveaways, public-sector largesse, runaway defense spending at the national level and exponential growth in law enforcement at state and local levels, and so much more. We worry, rightly, that the United States is pursuing the same policies that gave rise to Japan's "lost decade" (now in its in second decade!).

Which brings me to these two graphs.  Note the correlation between sluggish post-recession job growth and the size of government.





There's been a lot of talk on the left about government jobs being important "stabilizers." 

What do stabilizers do when the economy is in recession?  They stabilize! Hurray!

What do stabilizers do when the economy is growing?  They stabilize!  Hurr-- wait, uh oh.

If we want to have the same standard of living for the next 100 years, stability is great, but if we want economic growth and the accompanying increase in living standards, we'll need to remember "stability" and "growth" are two concepts in conflict by definition.

posted by Dave on 03.14.11 at 07:57 PM


THANK YOU for posting this! I love your blog!!

Common Cents

Steve   ·  March 14, 2011 11:18 PM

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