Home > Off Blog > For those who think Washington doesn’t spend enough…

For those who think Washington doesn’t spend enough…

The endless debate on the size of government spending divides TEA Partier from progressive, and Libertarian from Socialist. But, we have yet to see any examination of the spending presented in such a way as to give us any perspective on the claims of one side or the other.

Germany, it is said, has a lush and sensible social safety net, while our own is crude and stingy. France’s public spending burden is said to be oppressive as compared to the United States. And, Japan’s spending has lead to unprecedented levels of public debt after two decades of deflation fighting.

We wondered how the US measured up to the rest of the world and went looking for the data. We post below 2004 statistics on US government spending and those of all other countries during the same period. This is, in other words, a comparison of US spending versus all other countries on the planet BEFORE the crisis erupted in 2008.

As you can see in the table, the US accounted for 25 percent of all government spending by all countries. This is hardly small government by any stretch of the imagination!

The spending by the United States alone is equal to the spending of the next three biggest countries in GREEN.

The spending by the United States alone is equal to the spending of the next 7 countries after that – shown in PURPLE.

And, the spending by the United States alone is equal to the spending of the remaining 172 countries in RED – that is, all the rest of the countries on the planet, other than the top ten, account for no more than what the United States spent by itself.

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