TITLE

How Big Is Government?

AUTHOR(S)
Scherer, Joseph
PUB. DATE
September 1975
SOURCE
Challenge (05775132);Sep/Oct75, Vol. 18 Issue 4, p60
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
This article focuses on the size of the government. The size of government is a controversial issue among economists, not to mention among politicians and the general public. The conventional yardstick for measuring the relative size of any sector of the economy is a comparison with gross national product (GNP). Total federal, state, and local government spending in the U.S., as measured in the national income accounts for calendar 1974, amounted to $505 billion, more than one-third of GNP; the federal government alone spent $299 billion, or about 21 percent of GNP, while state and local governments spent $206 billion, or about 15 percent. Another way to estimate the relative size of the government sector in the economy is by using the proportion of public employment to total employment. The present size of government, however measured, is not the sole focus of controversy. Those who hold that government is too big view with alarm the great increase in government spending in recent decades both in dollar amount and as a percentage of GNP. Those who see the government sector as starved hold that the pace of increase has been too slow.
ACCESSION #
6149611

 

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