Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Stat of the day

Americans are markedly cynical about the amount of waste in federal spending, more so than at several other times in recent history. On average, Americans believe 50 cents of every tax dollar that goes to the government in Washington, D.C., today are wasted. That's an increase from 46 cents per dollar in 2001.
What's more, that's the highest figure since the poll began 30 years ago:

Click to enlarge

The people are catching on.


Ben said...

I don't know what's more remarkable about that figure: that it follows the tremendously wasteful Bush years or that it increased through the rather lean and efficient Clinton years. Additionally, I'm not sure pointing to the opinion of the American people alone is enough to defend your statement "the people are catching on." It seems to me implicit in your conclusion that 1. tax dollars are wasted; 2. that tax dollars have been consistently wasted over time; and 3. that the American people are more aware of it today than in the past. Your data only supports the 3rd of these propositions.

Colin said...

You're right, the data only supports point #3. But I would argue that points one and two are supported by a consistent reading of this blog.

Colin said...

BTW, I would add that the Clinton years can only be described as "lean and efficient" only in a very, very relative sense. Using constant 1996 dollars, federal outlays increased by over $400 billion under Clinton's watch.