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John Adams Blog

The blog of The Antient and Honourable John Adams Society, Minnesota's Conservative Debating Society www.johnadamssociety.org

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Federal Gov Spending....

It's always a given that the government is spending too much. However, is Bush the all time biggest spender?

As of the latest GDP report the federal government is spending about 20.40% GDP. Up until 1980, this would have been considered an extradordinary amount. However, the Reagan Revolution ratcheded up spending to as high as 23.46%. Much of this was spending on the military, as military spending reached 6.0% of GDP in 1983. If military spending would have been 3%, federal spending would have been about 20.5% of GDP in 1983

In 1993 when Clinton took office, spending was in the mid to upper 22% range. However, in 1993 we were also still spending 4.4% GDP on the military. In 1998, spending decreased to 19% GDP, however, defense spending decreased as well to a low 3.0%. If military spending would have remained at 4.4% in 1998, federal spending would have been about 20.5% of GDP. Today, we have ratcheded military spending up to about $500 billion, which includes $80 billion for Iraq. That is roughly 3.9% GDP. If we were spending only 3.0% on military spending in 2006, total federal spending would be about 19.5% of GDP... or where it was during the late 1990s.

Blogger Scribbler de Stebbing said...

So what I hear you say is that spending was way, way too high in the eighties, way too high in the nineties, and way, way too high now.

When is the last time spending was closer to 10% GDP?

7:50 AM, April 30, 2006  
Blogger Sloanasaurus said...

You would probably have to go back to pre-income tax days.

During the 1950s, spending was between 15-18%.

1:49 AM, May 01, 2006  
Blogger Scribbler de Stebbing said...

Spending was about 10% of GDP in 1930. It rose and hovered around 15% during the thirties (but consider what the GDP was during the depression), shot up during WWII and never recovered.

6:18 PM, May 01, 2006  
Blogger Scribbler de Stebbing said...

Whoops -- that was way off. 10% was TOTAL government spending as %age of GDP. Federal spending was about 2.5% in 1930. Federal spending didn't hit 10% until 1941.

6:42 PM, May 01, 2006  

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