By Michael Snyder
18 Stats That Prove That Government Dependence Has Reached Epidemic Levels
Did you know that the number of Americans getting benefits from the federal government each month exceeds the number of full-time workers in the private sector by more than 60 million? In other words, the number of people that are taking money out of the system is far greater than the number of people that are putting money into the system. And did you know that nearly 70 percent of all of the money that the federal government spends goes toward entitlement and welfare programs? When it comes to the transfer of wealth, nobody does it on a grander scale than the U.S. government. Most of what the government does involves taking money from some people and giving it to other people. In fact, at this point that is the primary function of the federal government.
Just check out the chart below. It comes from the Heritage Foundation, and it shows that 69 percent of all federal money is spent either on entitlements or on welfare programs…
So when people tell you that the main reason why we are being taxed into oblivion is so that we can “build roads” and provide “public services”, they are lying to you. The main reason why the government taxes you so much is so that they can take your money and give it to someone else.
We have become a nation that is completely and totally addicted to government money. The following are 18 stats that prove that government dependence has reached epidemic levels…
#1 According to an analysis of U.S. government numbers conducted by Terrence P. Jeffrey, there are 86 million full-time private sector workers in the United States paying taxes to support the government, and nearly 148 million Americans that are receiving benefits from the government each month. How long can such a lopsided system possibly continue?
#2 Ten years ago, the number of women in the U.S. that had jobs outnumbered the number of women in the U.S. on food stamps by more than a 2 to 1 margin. But now the number of women in the U.S. on food stamps actually exceeds the number of women that have jobs.
#3 The U.S. government has spent an astounding 3.7 trillion dollars on welfare programs over the past five years.
#4 Today, the federal government runs about 80 different “means-tested welfare programs”, and almost all of those programs have experienced substantial growth in recent years.
#5 Back in 1960, the ratio of social welfare benefits to salaries and wages was approximately 10 percent. In the year 2000, the ratio of social welfare benefits to salaries and wages was approximately 21 percent. Today, the ratio of social welfare benefits to salaries and wages is approximately 35 percent.
#6 While Barack Obama has been in the White House, the total number of Americans on food stamps has gone from 32 million to nearly 47 million.
#7 Back in the 1970s, about one out of every 50 Americans was on food stamps. Today, about one out of every 6.5 Americans is on food stamps.
#8 It sounds crazy, but the number of Americans on food stamps now exceeds the entire population of the nation of Spain.
#9 According to one calculation, the number of Americans on food stamps is now greater than the combined populations of “Alaska, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming.”
#10 According to a report from the Center for Immigration Studies, 43 percent of all immigrants that have been in the United States for at least 20 years are still on welfare.
#11 Back in 1965, only one out of every 50 Americans was on Medicaid. Today, more than 70 million Americans are on Medicaid, and it is being projected that Obamacare will add 16 million more Americans to the Medicaid rolls.
#12 The number of Americans on Medicare is projected to grow from a little bit more than 50 million today to 73.2 million in 2025.
#13 Medicare is facing unfunded liabilities of more than 38 trillion dollars over the next 75 years. That comes to approximately $328,404 for each and every household in the United States.
#14 If the number of Americans enrolled in the Social Security disability program were gathered into a single state, it would be the 8th largest state in the entire country.
#15 In 1968, there were 51 full-time workers for every American on disability. Today, there are just 13 full-time workers for every American on disability.
#17 Overall, the Social Security system is facing a 134 trillion dollar shortfall over the next 75 years.
#18 According to the most recent numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau, an all-time record 49.2 percent of all Americans are receiving benefits from at least one government program each month. Back in 1983, less than a third of all Americans lived in a home that received direct monetary benefits from the federal government.
Many will read this and will assume that I am against helping the poor. That is completely and totally not true. There will always be people that are impoverished, and this happens for many reasons. In many cases, people simply lack the capacity to take care of themselves. It is a good thing to take care of such people, whether the money comes from public or private sources. In every society, those that are the most vulnerable need to be looked after.
But it is a very troubling sign that the number of people on government assistance is now far, far greater than the number of people with full-time jobs. This is not a sustainable situation. The federal government is already drowning in debt, and yet more people become dependent on the government with each passing day.
The long-term solution is to get more Americans working or starting their own businesses, but the federal government continues to pursue policies that are absolutely killing the creation of jobs and the creation of small businesses in this country. So our epidemic of government dependence is going to continue to get worse.
And many of these programs are absolutely riddled with fraud and corruption. Just check out the following excerpt from a recent Natural News article…
To understand the extent of this fraudulent waste, go no further than Dr. Salomon Melgen, a Florida ophthalmologist who raked in $20.8 million from Medicare in 2012 alone. Dr. Melgen isn’t the only one bathing in the fraud of this crony government program. Medicare dished out over $1 million to almost 4,000 doctors in 2012, according to the new data release analyzed by The Washington Post.
Jonathan Blum, principal deputy administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, is calling on the public for help in identifying fraud. He says, “The program is funded by and large by taxpayer dollars. The public has a right to know what it is paying for. We know there is fraud in the system. We are asking for the public’s help to check, to find waste, and to find potential fraud.”
Instead of fixing their own problems, they want us to help them do it.
And of course they always want more of our money to help fund these programs. In fact, according to Americans for Tax Reform, Barack Obama has proposed 442 tax increases since entering the White House…
-79 tax increases for FY 2010
-52 tax increases for FY 2011
-47 tax increases for FY 2012
-34 tax increases for FY 2013
-137 tax increases for FY 2014
-93 tax increases for FY 2015
Perhaps not coincidentally, the Obama budget with the lowest number of proposed tax increases was released during an election year: In February 2012, Obama released his FY 2013 budget, with “only” 34 proposed tax increases. Once safely re-elected, Obama came back with a vengeance, proposing 137 tax increases, a personal record high for the 44th President.
The more we feed the monster, the larger and larger it grows.
And yet poverty is not decreasing. In fact, the poverty rate has been at 15 percent or greater for three years in a row. That is the first time that has happened in decades.
Barack Obama promised to “transform” America, and yet poverty and government dependence have just continued to grow during his presidency.
Not that anyone really believes anything that he has to say at this point. In fact, one recent survey found that only 15 percent of Americans believe that Barack Obama always tells the truth and 37 percent believe that he lies “most of the time”…
A Fox News poll released Wednesday shows that six out of every ten Americans believes that President Barack Obama lies to the American people, at least some of the time. A plurality – 37% – say that he lies “most of the time,” while another 24% say he lies “some of the time.” Another 20% say he lies once in awhile, while only 15% say that he never lies.
So what do you think?
This article first appeared here at the The American Dream. Michael Snyder is a writer, speaker and activist who writes and edits his own blogs The American Dream and Economic Collapse Blog. Follow him on Twitter here.
Do you know where your 2014 taxes will go?
Well, here’s an amazing infographic which breaks it out beautifully*
This graphic comes out every year and I still find it fascinating. (And depressing.)
Click on the graphic for a much larger version.
* A very important note on this graphic – It doesn’t break out Social Security (the largest federal outlay, paid through payroll taxes) Medicaid, or Medicare which are all much larger than anything listed here. Still the detail on the discretionary budget is valuable.
Too many ninja-bureaucrats: Why are federal agencies increasingly armed to the teeth?
Even the Federal Reserve and NOAA (that’s right, the weather people) have their own mini-armies of supercops. Why?
It’s been estimated the U.S. has some 25,000 sworn law enforcement officers in departments not traditionally associated with fighting crime. According to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, and in a tabulation compiled by the Wall Street Journal in 2011, 3,812 criminal investigators are working in areas other than the U.S.departments of Treasury, Justice, Defense and Homeland Security.
Lynch says it’s hard to tell how much money federal agencies spend on their respective law enforcement divisions.
Image credit: http://www.againstcronycapitalism.org
“On average, each Fortune 100 company received about $200 million in (taxpayer funded subsidies.)”
Think about that. On average each of the largest 100 companies in the world receives $200 million from the US taxpayer, each year. Some more than others of course.
This is not capitalism. This is crony capitalism and it is dangerous to our economy and our society. If small government people are going to talk about how free markets are preferable to the incestuous system we have now they need to go after corporate welfare.
Each member of the House and Senate should be held accountable on a day to day basis. Who voted for what? And not only on whether a lawmaker voted to make a bill law, but also if a member voted to move something into (or out of) committee. What were the committee votes? What maneuvering happened?
If we want a less crony capitalist government it’s going to take some monitoring (and perhaps at least equally as important, reporting). We have the technology.
(From The National Review)
So who are the major corporate-welfare queens? The biggest grant recipients were
General Electric ($380 million), followed by General Motors ($370 million), Boeing ($264 million), Archer Daniels Midland ($174 million), and United Technologies ($160 million).
Double- and triple-dipper Archer Daniels Midland got just under $1 billion for USDA farm-program loans, and this doesn’t include ethanol subsidies. Another $10 billion was doled out through federal insurance, often in the form of surety bonds. The No. 1 federal insurance program was the Export-Import Bank, with Wells Fargo and JPMorgan Chase both receiving more than $3 billion in such aid and Citigroup and Bank of America receiving more than $1.5 billion in taxpayer backstop insurance. (Remember, this doesn’t include TARP money.) Deere, American Express, and even Walmart reeled in federal insurance as well. Amazingly, all but one of the Fortune 100 stood in the federal soup line to take at least some form of corporate-welfare benefit. In other words, as Open the Books founder Adam Andrzejewski puts it: “Mitt Romney had it wrong. When it comes to the Fortune 100, it’s 99 percent, not 47 percent, on some form of the government’s gravy train.”
Image credit: http://www.againstcronycapitalism.org
A List Of 97 Taxes Americans Pay Every Year
If you are like most Americans, paying taxes is one of your pet peeves. The deadline to file your federal taxes is coming up, and this year Americans will spend more than 7 billion hours preparing their taxes and will hand over more than four trillion dollars to federal, state and local governments. Americans will fork over nearly 30 percent of what they earn to pay their income taxes, but that is only a small part of the story. As you will see below, there are dozens of other taxes that Americans pay every year. Of course not everyone pays all of these taxes, but without a doubt we are all being taxed into oblivion. It is like death by a thousand paper cuts. Our politicians have become extremely creative in finding ways to extract money from all of us, and most Americans don’t even realize what is being done to them. By the time it is all said and done, a significant portion of the population ends up paying more than half of what they earn to the government. That is fundamentally wrong, but nothing will be done about it until people start demanding change. The following is a list of 97 taxes Americans pay every year…
#1 Air Transportation Taxes (just look at how much you were charged the last time you flew)
#2 Biodiesel Fuel Taxes
#3 Building Permit Taxes
#4 Business Registration Fees
#5 Capital Gains Taxes
#6 Cigarette Taxes
#7 Court Fines (indirect taxes)
#8 Disposal Fees
#9 Dog License Taxes
#10 Drivers License Fees (another form of taxation)
#11 Employer Health Insurance Mandate Tax
#12 Employer Medicare Taxes
#13 Employer Social Security Taxes
#14 Environmental Fees
#15 Estate Taxes
#16 Excise Taxes On Comprehensive Health Insurance Plans
#17 Federal Corporate Taxes
#18 Federal Income Taxes
#19 Federal Unemployment Taxes
#20 Fishing License Taxes
#21 Flush Taxes (yes, this actually exists in some areas)
#22 Food And Beverage License Fees
#23 Franchise Business Taxes
#24 Garbage Taxes
#25 Gasoline Taxes
#26 Gift Taxes
#27 Gun Ownership Permits
#28 Hazardous Material Disposal Fees
#29 Highway Access Fees
#30 Hotel Taxes (these are becoming quite large in some areas)
#31 Hunting License Taxes
#32 Import Taxes
#33 Individual Health Insurance Mandate Taxes
#34 Inheritance Taxes
#35 Insect Control Hazardous Materials Licenses
#36 Inspection Fees
#37 Insurance Premium Taxes
#38 Interstate User Diesel Fuel Taxes
#39 Inventory Taxes
#40 IRA Early Withdrawal Taxes
#41 IRS Interest Charges (tax on top of tax)
#42 IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax)
#43 Library Taxes
#44 License Plate Fees
#45 Liquor Taxes
#46 Local Corporate Taxes
#47 Local Income Taxes
#48 Local School Taxes
#49 Local Unemployment Taxes
#50 Luxury Taxes
#51 Marriage License Taxes
#52 Medicare Taxes
#53 Medicare Tax Surcharge On High Earning Americans Under Obamacare
#54 Obamacare Individual Mandate Excise Tax (if you don’t buy “qualifying” health insurance under Obamacare you will have to pay an additional tax)
#55 Obamacare Surtax On Investment Income (a new 3.8% surtax on investment income)
#56 Parking Meters
#57 Passport Fees
#58 Professional Licenses And Fees (another form of taxation)
#59 Property Taxes
#60 Real Estate Taxes
#61 Recreational Vehicle Taxes
#62 Registration Fees For New Businesses
#63 Toll Booth Taxes
#64 Sales Taxes
#65 Self-Employment Taxes
#66 Sewer & Water Taxes
#67 School Taxes
#68 Septic Permit Taxes
#69 Service Charge Taxes
#70 Social Security Taxes
#71 Special Assessments For Road Repairs Or Construction
#72 Sports Stadium Taxes
#73 State Corporate Taxes
#74 State Income Taxes
#75 State Park Entrance Fees
#76 State Unemployment Taxes (SUTA)
#77 Tanning Taxes (a new Obamacare tax on tanning services)
#78 Telephone 911 Service Taxes
#79 Telephone Federal Excise Taxes
#80 Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Taxes
#81 Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Taxes
#82 Telephone State And Local Taxes
#83 Telephone Universal Access Taxes
#84 The Alternative Minimum Tax
#85 Tire Recycling Fees
#86 Tire Taxes
#87 Tolls (another form of taxation)
#88 Traffic Fines (indirect taxation)
#89 Use Taxes (Out of state purchases, etc.)
#90 Utility Taxes
#91 Vehicle Registration Taxes
#92 Waste Management Taxes
#93 Water Rights Fees
#94 Watercraft Registration & Licensing Fees
#95 Well Permit Fees
#96 Workers Compensation Taxes
#97 Zoning Permit Fees
Yet despite all of this oppressive taxation, our local governments, our state governments and our federal government are all absolutely drowning in debt.
When the federal income tax was originally introduced a little more than 100 years ago, most Americans were taxed at a rate of only 1 percent.
But once they get their feet in the door, the social planners always want more.
Since that time, tax rates have gone much higher and the tax code has exploded in size.
Why do we have to have the most convoluted tax system in the history of the planet?
Why can’t things be simpler?
In a previous article entitled “24 Outrageous Facts About Taxes In The United States That Will Blow Your Mind“, I listed a number of reasons why our federal income tax system has become a complete and utter abomination that is entirely out of control…
1 – The U.S. tax code is now 3.8 million words long. If you took all of William Shakespeare’s works and collected them together, the entire collection would only be about 900,000 words long.
2 – According to the National Taxpayers Union, U.S. taxpayers spend more than 7.6 billion hours complying with federal tax requirements. Imagine what our society would look like if all that time was spent on more economically profitable activities.
3 – 75 years ago, the instructions for Form 1040 were two pages long. Today, they are 189 pages long.
4 – There have been 4,428 changes to the tax code over the last decade. It is incredibly costly to change tax software, tax manuals and tax instruction booklets for all of those changes.
5 – According to the National Taxpayers Union, the IRS currently has 1,999 different publications, forms, and instruction sheets that you can download from the IRS website.
6 – Our tax system has become so complicated that it is almost impossible to file your taxes correctly. For example, back in 1998 Money Magazine had 46 different tax professionals complete a tax return for a hypothetical household. All 46 of them came up with a different result.
7 – In 2009, PC World had five of the most popular tax preparation software websites prepare a tax return for a hypothetical household. All five of them came up with a different result.
8 – The IRS spends $2.45 for every $100 that it collects in taxes.
10 – When the U.S. government first implemented a personal income tax back in 1913, the vast majority of the population paid a rate of just 1 percent, and the highest marginal tax rate was just 7 percent.
If it was up to me, I would abolish the income tax and shut the IRS down.
But neither major political party in the United States is even willing to consider such a thing.
So the monstrous system that we have created will continue to get even bigger and even more complicated.
We are literally being taxed into oblivion, and most Americans don’t even seem to care.
This article first appeared here at the Economic Collapse Blog. Michael Snyder is a writer, speaker and activist who writes and edits his own blogs The American Dream and Economic Collapse Blog. Follow him on Twitter here.
Image credit: http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com
Hot Mic Catches Lindsey Graham Offering Help to Democrats to Send Tax Payer Money to Ukraine
Secretary of State John Kerry was on Capitol Hill Thursday urging lawmakers to approve an economic aid package to Ukraine. After the hearing, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) told Kerry, “Hey John, good job. Let me know what I can do to help you with [House Speaker John] Boehner.”
Ron Paul made recent comments on the dangers of being entangled with the Eastern Europe crisis:
We must demand a shift away from a war footing, away from incendiary rhetoric. We are broke and cannot afford to “buy” Ukraine. We certainly cannot afford another war, especially with Russia!
(Via Freedom Outpost)
Image courtesy of Boians Cho Joo Young at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
By Jim Cox
Tax Consumers, Taxpayers, and the Cox Box
Years ago I joked that every economist’s highest goal was to have a graph or concept named for him or her. Among the existing ones are the Keynesian Cross Graph, the Edgeworth Box, the Phillip’s Curve, the Laffer Curve, Rothbard’s Law, Buridan’s Ass, Mises’s Butler, Hume’s Specie-Flow Mechanism, Rostow’s Stages of Growth, the Ricardo Effect, Menger’s Law, the Beveridge Curve, and Hayek’s Triangles.
I came up with a way of visually depicting libertarian class analysis in the 1980s but never shared it beyond a friend or two. But now I immodestly present what I have called the Cox Box.
Libertarian class analysis is based on two classes in regard to government: the taxpayers and the tax consumers. It is important to note that libertarian class analysis predates the better known Marxist class analysis of workers and the owners of the means of production (capitalists). Marx published his class analysis in 1848, whereas the libertarian class analysis of J. B. Say and Charles Dunoyer was developed in 1810 and by James Mill in the 1820s and 1830s.
Here is how John Calhoun stated libertarian class analysis in his Disquisition on Government in 1848:
The necessary result … is to divide the community into two great classes: one consisting of those who, in reality, pay the taxes and, of course, bear exclusively the burden of supporting the government; and the other, of those who are recipients of their proceeds through disbursements, who are, in fact, supported by the government; or in fewer words, to divide into tax-payers and tax-consumers. … The effect … is to enrich; and strengthen the one, and impoverish and weaken the other.
So, how to depict the correct libertarian class analysis? Here, I depict it as a box with income levels along the one axis and a division of taxpayers and tax consumers along the other axis wherein half of all income levels are net taxpayers and half are net tax consumers. Figure 1 represents a hypothetical economy in which net tax consumption does not vary by income level:
Figure 1: A neutral Cox Box.
We know, however, that tax consumption can very significantly at various income levels. What are some of the specific examples of the ways one is a tax consumer in the modern US? Among the higher incomes these transfers include farm subsidies, mortgage guarantees, bank bailouts, overseas marketing subsidies, and the recent Quantitative Easing to pump up the stock market (to name only a few of the many). At the lower income levels, these transfers include the SNAP program, rent subsidies, unemployment benefits, and Medicaid (again, to name only a few of the many).
Conservatives believe the appropriate depiction is reflected in Figure 2, which features an economy in which higher income earners pay the bulk of all taxes (not just income taxes) while receiving little in return, and the welfare-enabled lower income earners pay very little of all taxes (not just income taxes) while receiving much in unearned payments:
Figure 2: The conservative view.
Conservatives, however, tend to overlook the money that so many higher-income earners receive from their crony capitalist connections within government. So, firms such as General Motors do earn their revenues from willing customers but also have enjoyed taxpayer-financed bailouts and protection from their potential competitors through various regulations.
Left liberals believe that the appropriate depiction is best explained in Figure 3, as they largely believe that higher income earners don’t pay their “fair share” of all taxes (not just income taxes) while receiving vast benefits in return. Meanwhile, the welfare recipients pay substantial taxes (not just income taxes), while receiving a pittance in return compared to their better-connected higher-income earners. Higher-income earners such as General Motors stockholders and executives are subsidized with resources not bestowed on lower-income earners:
Figure 3: The left-liberal view.
Libertarians in contrast favor Figure 4 with higher-income earners using their political connections to arrange money flows to themselves. At the same time, ideological pressures result in a political buying off of the desperate lower income groups who have been shut out of opportunities to better their circumstances via licensing costs, minimum wages, regulations and more.
Figure 4: The libertarian view of tax consumers.
Libertarians in particular see a troubling drift over time to the left of the diagram as net taxpayers are increasingly outnumbered by net tax consumers. As Mises pointed out in Bureaucracy, this will eventually lead to the destruction of the economic system.
Cox Box analysis will reveal a different mix of taxpayers and consumers at different income and wealth levels in different societies, times, and places. In the modern United States, however, we find an economy in which those at the income extremes appear to most easily take advantage of taxpayer-funded benefits while those at the middle income levels are increasingly called upon to finance the expenditures. Moreover, libertarians see the country as being transformed from a society of free individuals voluntarily interacting with one another into a heavily-politicized society wherein the government is involved — by various means — in virtually every facet of life.
About the Author
Image credit: https://mises.org
By Tyler Durden
There are 2.3 million people living behind bars in the United States and the prison system cost the federal government $55 billion every year. Between 1990 and 2010, the number of privately operated prisons in the US increased 1600%… it seems crime does pay, but for whom is the question?
John Stossel – Stop Subsidizing The Rich (Video)
How does money move between the States and Feds?
Published by NextNewsNetwork
Constitutional scholar Dr. Edwin Vieira sits down with Gary Franchi and answers the question… How does money move between the States and Feds?
Download your free Next News “Heroes & Villains” Poster here: http://nextnewsnetwork.com/the-2013-h…