Exploring the Relationship between the size of Government and Economic Growth

September 19, 2022 | 2022 Kansas Green Book Report

"U.S. Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis saw states as “laboratories of democracy” conducting “experiments” in public policy. Today, more than eight decades after Brandeis coined the phrase, state experimentation with tax policy makes it abundantly clear that tax policy has a direct impact on economic growth. As shown on page 27, each of the eleven states that enacted an income tax since 1960 now has a smaller share of state GDP relative to the other 39 states and each one also has a smaller share of state and local tax revenue. That is a remarkable statistic; those eleven states enacted a new source of tax revenue and lost revenue share to other states! On the contrary, states with low tax burdens and states without an income tax consistently outshine their higher-burden peers on the key, tangible economic measures like growth in private-sector jobs, GDP, and wages. What’s more, citizens are taking notice and “voting with their feet” by flock- ing to low-burden states from higher-burden counterparts. Skeptics try to dismiss this definitive migratory trend by cherry-picking success stories like Texas and Florida and characterizing them as ‘’happy accidents” of favorable geography, climate, and/or resource abundance."

The Federal Government has borrowed trillions, but who owns all that debt?

September 12, 2022 | The Peter Peterson Foundation

"At the end of 2021, the nation’s gross debt had reached nearly $30 trillion dollars. Of that amount, about 20 percent, or $7 trillion, was intragovernmental debt — which simply records transactions between one part of the federal government and another. 

Here, we are looking at the other 80 percent, known as debt held by the public. That approximately $23 trillion represents cash borrowed from domestic and foreign investors."

Fixing America's Fiscal Mess- A Time for Advanced Citizenship

September 6, 2022 | Bill of Financial Responsibilities Project

"Our national regulatory structure is 170,000 pages long and, according to Steve Forbes, costs our economy about $2 trillion a year. That’s about as much in totalas we collect yearly from business and personal income taxes. Yet ironically the process of regulation is largely unregulated, does not have to derive its specific authorities from law, and as a practical matter is protected from independent judicial process. America’s federal government is the only element of government in our country not subject to generally accepted accounting principles independently promulgated by experts, and independently audited on time by accounting firms with full transparency and timely reporting to citizens, including a full explanation and official acceptance of responsibility by leaders and managers for the outcomes."

Kauai acts to spike pension spiking

September 6, 2022 | Grassroots Institute of Hawaii

"Some advice for all our policymakers out there struggling with public pension liabilities:

The first step is admitting you have a problem. The next step is getting real data on how bad that problem is. Only then can you begin working out how to address it."

Biden’s IRS Auditor Army Will Disrupt Economic Recovery

September 6, 2022 | Real Clear Politics

"The Biden administration’s decision to recruit nearly 90,000 new IRS auditors could have a chilling effect on small businesses and economic growth, permanently impeding our nation’s ability to recover from its current economic malaise.

As part of the misleadingly titled “Inflation Reduction Act,” President Biden and his allies secured roughly $80 billion in new IRS funding to hire 87,000 auditors. This is bad news for the American economy."

 

GOVERNMENT STUDENT LOAN DEBT WORSE THAN IT LOOKS

August 30, 2022 | Kurt O'Keefe Guest Article Contributor

"The student loans owed to the Federal government – over $1.6 trillion dollars and growing – are shown as assets on the government’s books.

The Government Accounting Office (GAO) did a deep dive into the recent actual Direct Loan repayment history at the request of Congress persons.

The purpose of the report,  released last month, is stated here:

https://www.gao.gov/products/gao-22-105365

 “This report examines how and why Education’s Direct Loan cost estimates have changed over time. A forthcoming report will examine government and private sector estimation methods and Education’s approach to estimating Direct Loan costs.” 

Guess what? – the government has consistently over-estimated how much student loan debt would be repaid."

Cancelling Student Debt Would Undermine Inflation Reduction Act

August 30, 2022 | Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget

"The recently-passed Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) will reduce budget deficits by roughly $275 billion while pushing fiscal policy in the right direction to assist the Federal Reserve in its fight against inflation. However, a possible announcement from the White House to offer across-the-board student debt cancellation could undermine the bill’s disinflationary gains and deficit reduction."

Should Social Security be eliminated as a federal entitlement program? Or would that ‘end the program as you know it’?

August 16, 2022 | Market Watch

"Social Security and Medicare are two of the government’s mandatory spending programs — and popular ones at that — but one senator has suggested changing that label, making them vulnerable to annual budget cuts every year."

Thirty-Nine States Do Not Have Enough Money To Pay Their Bills

August 9, 2022 | Forbes

"Most pundits and the media are trying to figure out what politicians’ posturing before the cameras really means for President Biden’s Build Back Better Pans. Yet, way below their radar is the weak financial health of the majority of U.S. states. ‘Financial State of the States,’ a report published earlier this week, shows that 39 states do not have enough money to pay their bills, potentially leaving a significant tax burden for current and future residents of their states. According to Sheila Weinberg, CEO of Truth in Accounting, a not-for-profit nonpartisan accounting watchdog, “Despite receiving federal assistance from the CARES Act and other COVID-19 related grants, the majority of states’ finances worsened. Total debt among the 50 states amounted to $1.5 trillion at the end of the fiscal year 2020, which was just the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.” 

‘We Have a Financial Crisis Here’: Mendocino Board of Supervisors Concede the County’s Books are Unreliable

August 9, 2022 | MendoFever

"A Mendocino County Board of Supervisors discussion about cost overruns for the new jail construction project veered into a cry for help from the state, as county leadership admitted that it does not have a clear idea of what its financial situation is."

 

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