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Author Topic:   Wealth Distribution in the USA
Member (Idle past 2592 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007

Message 488 of 531 (701590)
06-21-2013 1:42 PM
Reply to: Message 459 by Coyote
06-19-2013 10:55 PM

Let's look at the reality of "big" government.
Coyote writes:
Aren't you aware that for every government employee there are several taxpayers supporting their salaries and benefits--and that by definition government is a drain on the economy rather than a benefit?
Really? In most of the world's richest 30 countries more than 30% of GDP is spent by the government. It ranges up to 58% (Iceland) and they spend far more than the world average in percentage terms, and therefore, being rich, far far more in real terms. In other words, "big" government is more often associated with success and wealth rather than poverty.
U.S. government spending is 38.9 % of GDP. If we look at your neighbours, Canada spends 39.7%, and Mexico a relatively low 23.7%.
Government spending
Do you think that the U.S. and Canada should emulate Mexico?
Wealthy countries in which government spending is less than 30% are generally unusual in their circumstances, like the eastern city-state trading ports Hong Kong and Singapore, or small enclaves with tiny populations swimming in huge oil fields, like Qatar and the United Arab Emirates.
Some very poor countries come out with strangely high percentages on the list above, like 97% and even 114%, but that's because the aid their governments receive from other countries can about equal or even exceed their own GDP! But generally speaking, poor countries have the "small" governments that you seem to think advantageous in wealth making.
Here's a per. capita wealth list.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 459 by Coyote, posted 06-19-2013 10:55 PM Coyote has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 489 by Coyote, posted 06-21-2013 9:25 PM bluegenes has replied

Member (Idle past 2592 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007

Message 500 of 531 (701655)
06-23-2013 10:34 AM
Reply to: Message 489 by Coyote
06-21-2013 9:25 PM

Re: Let's look at the reality of "big" government.
Coyote writes:
Why Government Spending Does Nothing for Jobs
While most economists and policy makers are focusing on the International Monetary Fund’s epiphany on the perils of austerity, some researchers at the IMF have offered another take on the fiscal-policy debate. They found that less is more, even when it comes to the size and scope of government.
Bloomberg - Are you a robot?
That's an opinion piece you've linked to, which is why it says "opinion" in the bar at the top. Here's a list of countries in order of the percentage of employees who are in the public sector, highest at the top, from the OECD in 2008.. I've put their current or most recent recorded unemployment rates in, from here.
Norway 3.0
Denmark 7.7
Sweden 8.4
Finland 8.2
France 11
Hungary 10.9
Estonia 10.8
Luxembourg 5.1
United Kingdom 7.9
Belgium 7.4
Canada 7.1
Israel 6.7
Australia 5.5
Ireland 13.7
Slovenia 10.2
United States 7.5
Italy 12.0
Czech Republic 7.3
Spain 27.2
Portugal 17.7
Netherlands 8.3
Austria 3.9
Turkey 8.1
Slovak Republic 14.5
New Zealand 7.3
Poland 10.6
Switzerland 3.1
Germany 5.4
Chile 6.2
Mexico 5.12
Greece 27.4
Japan 4.2
S. Korea 2.9
Those figures don't mean that there isn't any crowding out (public employment keeping people out of private employment) effect at all, but they do indicate that it isn't a major factor in causing unemployment.
When you read articles on economics, they're often coloured by ideology, whether right, left or centre. It's always worth doing your own research because of this. Looking at the OECD chart, there's nothing to support the following hypotheses:
Having many public employees makes a country rich/poor.
Having few public employees makes a country rich/poor.
Having many public employees means high/low unemployment.
Having few public employees means high/low unemployment.
Public employment isn't the same as public spending, which is what my last post was about. Some wealthy countries have very high public spending but a low level of public employment (Austria, for example) and others relatively low public spending but high public employment (Luxembourg).
As you seem to consider all or most public spending to be socialism, then we can certainly say that all wealthy successful countries are socialist (by your definition, not most people's ).

This message is a reply to:
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