Back from Tasmania and packing for China. Tell Dr Michael Spence, Vice Chancellor of “Australia’s leading university” what you think about student union blocking The Red Pill from screening on campus. mailto [email protected] He may claim this is out of his hands but the administration has form on other related issues and it is a toxic environment for conservatives.
Dan Mitchell. The shadow bureaucracy. Don’t be fooled by stable numbers of taxeaters in the capital city, check out the impact of federal programs and funds in the states, local government and the military.
…government has prudently become stealthy about how it becomes ever bigger. In a new Brookings paper, …government expands by indirection, using three kinds of “administrative proxies” — state and local government, for-profit businesses, and nonprofit organizations. Since 1960, the number of state and local government employees has tripled to more than 18 million, a growth driven by federal money: Between the early 1960s and early 2010s, the inflation-adjusted value of federal grants for the states increased more than tenfold. …“By conservative estimates,” DiIulio writes, “there are about 3 million state and local government workers” — about 50 percent more than the number of federal workers — “funded via federal grants and contracts.” Then there are for-profit contractors, used, DiIulio says, “by every federal department, bureau and agency.” For almost a decade, the Defense Department’s full-time equivalent of 700,000 to 800,000 civilian workers have been supplemented by the full-time equivalent of 620,000 to 770,000 for-profit contract employees. …the government spends more (about $350 billion) on defense contractors than on all official federal bureaucrats ($250 billion). Finally, “employment in the tax-exempt or independent sector more than doubled between 1977 and 2012 to more than 11 million.” Approximately a third of the revenues to nonprofits (e.g., Planned Parenthood) flow in one way or another from government.
Tax reform in the USA, Republicans struggle for consistency. The Brazilian future for the US when bureaucrats can retire early on lucrative pensions. This used to be the way in the Commonwealth public service.
But when I write about state governments, perhaps it would be more appropriate to warn about a Brazilian future. That’s because many American states have made unaffordable and unfunded promises to give lavish benefits to retired bureaucrats, a topic that I’ve addressed on numerous occasions.
And why does that mean a Brazilian future? Because as Greece is already suffering the inevitable consequences of a bloated welfare state, Brazil is already suffering the inevitable consequences of a pension system that treats bureaucrats as a protected and cossetted class. Here are some excerpts from a sobering report in the Wall Street Journal.
Inside the deep hidden empire of the almost faceless bureaucrats.
Energy. Don Aitkin on Gary Banks on our self-inflicted energy pain.
Weather. Warmth and CO2 are good for plant growth! Jo Nova and the cotton crop.