Posted by: Joshua Gross | January 20, 2009

Government employment surpasses manufacturing?

graph courtesy Contrary Investor, HT: Jawa Report
 The Jawas are pointing out that government employment has now surpassed manufacturing and construction sectors.
As they also point out:

What is the government’s product? How well is it selling? What tax revenue does government generate (not collect)? What is the profit margin for government, and when will it begin paying for itself? What tangible good or service is the rapidly-growing government producing? Why is there a recession if government is the answer? If government is trying to compete with manufacturing as a big-time employer, then why doesn’t it start generating its own income rather than taking it from productive people?

Reagan was right – the tendency for government is to grow into the closest thing to
eternal life that we’ll ever know on this planet. Are we better off for it? The only time government payrolls noticably decreased for any real length of time was under the Reagan Administration (blips under the others), so this is a systemic problem that crosses party lines (the two lines crossed during Bush’s term, highlighting the ‘success’ of “compassionate conservatism”).



  1. Please note that this graph depicts “payroll,” not numbers of jobs and that government payroll surpassed manufacturing largely due to declines in manufacturing. Why is manufacturing moving offshore? For cheap labor. How is that helping the economy?

    Actually, salaries paid to government employees, because they generally are fairly paid and provide retirement and health insurance benefits, contrubte more to local economies than manufacturing jobs.

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