August 16, 2006


Historic Milestone (ROBER WARD,
August 16, 2006, NY Sun)

As conservatives lament budget trends in Washington, a historic milestone came and went with little notice last month: The Census Bureau reported that state and local governments nationwide now collect more than $1 trillion a year in taxes.

It wasn't that long ago — 1970, to be exact — when the entire output of the American economy totaled $1 trillion. Sure, inflation since then means the figures aren't exactly equivalent. But there's only one conclusion to be drawn from this latest fiscal indicator. State governments, and the localities they control, are inflicting an increasingly unsustainable cost burden on workers and businesses.

Odd, the sensible conclusion would seem to be that this level of taxation has made it possible to increase the economy twelvefold. It helps, of course, that the total tax burden is low by the standards of the developed world and has even been reduced from our own historic highs.

Posted by Orrin Judd at August 16, 2006 8:38 AM
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