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More Fun With Numbers

In my first article on this subject, I tried to figure out the growth of the health-care bureaucracy compared to the growth of the health-care industry. This time I’d like to compare the numbers of people who have a financial interest in the redistribution of wealth fraud with the overall population, especially with the working population.

The 2000 census reported a total population of around 300 million; I say "around" because I know for a fact that they missed a few. Of that number, around 129 million were employed, or about 43% of the total population. Interesting that the number of individual tax returns for 1999 was 126 million, meaning either that the working population grew by 3 million people in one year or that 3 million working people didn’t file a federal income tax return in 1999. Whatever, it appears that of all the working people in 2000, about 40 million people worked directly for political government at all levels, or about 31% of the total number of working people or 13% of the total population (see footnote).

Now you wouldn’t think that a mere 13% of the population could command a livelihood from the majority 87% of the population, but they have two things in their favor. One, the legal use of force to collect taxes. Two, the tacit approval of the large number of people who share in the plunder.

I could not find numbers that counted the un-funded contingent liabilities of government, that is retirement for politicians, military and police personnel, and bureaucrats. Consequently, I took the population figure for people over the age of 62, assuming that all have a financial interest in the redistribution of wealth fraud. Here we have another 40 million people.

Whereas 13% of a population looks like the tail wagging the dog in society, 26% begins to look like something else, especially when we consider that this block on the receiving end is 47% of the total workforce and state dependents combined. Taxpayers should not be happy.

Please note that I am not counting the numbers of people who work for government contractors. Their incomes also derive from taxation and I cannot imagine (or find) their numbers, except in health-care.

Finally, I would like to introduce another curious set of numbers. In the 2000 election, about 100 million people voted. 200 million people did not vote. Surely, 200 million Americans were not too sick or too young to vote. Deducting whatever number you wish for the sick and for youth, there is still the massive secession from the political system to consider. And isn’t it curious that the 100 million number of voters resembles the 80 million number of tax-dependents? Ah, maybe it’s just a coincidence, but that’s the fun with numbers.