We're in the Money

Posted on October 18, 2006 | Author: Noah Clarke
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If Arizona's 2007 budget had a theme song, it would have to be "We're in the Money:"

We're in the money, come on, my honey,

Let's lend it, spend it, send it rolling along!

At $26 billion, our state government has a lot to lend, spend and send. But a lot compared to what?

To get a better sense of how much 
Arizona is spending, we can compare our budget to states with similar populations. For example, Indiana has 250,000 more residents than
Arizona
but is spending $4.5 billion less.

 


Arizona
is spending more per capita than most other states with similar populations, as the chart below illustrates.

 

One of the problems with an expansive government is the crowding out of individual responsibility. When government spends billions on programs to take care of citizens from cradle to grave, citizens have less incentive to take care of their own needs. Individual responsibility is replaced by dependency on government.

 

Barry Goldwater once said, "The root evil is that the government is engaged in activities in which it has no legitimate business." Government should stick to defending our lives, liberties and property and leave the pursuit of happiness to us.

 


Noah Clarke is an economist with the 
Goldwater Institute Center for Economic Prosperity.

 

Key Links:

 

-Cato Institute: "The Grand Old Spending Party"

-Mises Institute: "Making Economic Sense"

-Thomas Sowell: "Political Corruption: Misuse of Government Power"

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