This chart shows the historical size of government in America from 1929 through 2009. It includes federal, state and local government expenditures as a percentage of gross domestic product (GDP). This chart clearly shows: 1) that the size of our government will be larger in 2009 than at any other time in recent history, 2) the only other time the size of you government was near current levels was during World War II, and 3) that the size of our government has grown dramatically since 1929.
It can be argued that this chart also shows that we have been on a slow march toward socialism (or at least a more socialistic society) over the past 80 years. More on this topic tomorrow. I will compare the size of our government to the size of government in foreign countries.
> Office of Management and Budget, A New Era of Responsibility Renewing America’s Promise, Table S-1.
> Bureau of Economic Analysis, Table 1.1.5. Gross Domestic Product, and Table 3.1. Government Current Receipts and Expenditures.
> The estimate for 2009 has state and local expenditures cut by 2% from 2008 levels. And uses the Obama Administration’s budget forecast for 2009 federal expenditures and GDP.