This article has been generously contributed by Michael Snyder. You can follow his regular writings, research and analysis at The Economic Collapse Blog and The American Dream. Read his recent book The Beginning of the End to get an idea of what America may look like in the very near future.
Did you know that the number of Americans getting benefits from the federal government each month exceeds the number of full-time workers in the private sector by more than 60 million? In other words, the number of people that are taking money out of the system is far greater than the number of people that are putting money into the system. And did you know that nearly 70 percent of all of the money that the federal government spends goes toward entitlement and welfare programs? When it comes to the transfer of wealth, nobody does it on a grander scale than the U.S. government. Most of what the government does involves taking money from some people and giving it to other people. In fact, at this point that is the primary function of the federal government.
Just check out the chart below. It comes from the Heritage Foundation, and it shows that 69 percent of all federal money is spent either on entitlements or on welfare programs…
So when people tell you that the main reason why we are being taxed into oblivion is so that we can “build roads” and provide “public services”, they are lying to you. The main reason why the government taxes you so much is so that they can take your money and give it to someone else.
We have become a nation that is completely and totally addicted to government money. The following are 18 stats that prove that government dependence has reached epidemic levels…
#1 According to an analysis of U.S. government numbers conducted by Terrence P. Jeffrey, there are 86 million full-time private sector workers in the United States paying taxes to support the government, and nearly 148 million Americans that are receiving benefits from the government each month. How long can such a lopsided system possibly continue?
#2 Ten years ago, the number of women in the U.S. that had jobs outnumbered the number of women in the U.S. on food stamps by more than a 2 to 1 margin. But now the number of women in the U.S. on food stamps actually exceedsthe number of women that have jobs.
#3 The U.S. government has spent an astounding 3.7 trillion dollars on welfare programs over the past five years.
#4 Today, the federal government runs about 80 different “means-tested welfare programs”, and almost all of those programs have experienced substantial growth in recent years.
#5 Back in 1960, the ratio of social welfare benefits to salaries and wages was approximately 10 percent. In the year 2000, the ratio of social welfare benefits to salaries and wages was approximately 21 percent. Today, the ratio of social welfare benefits to salaries and wages is approximately 35 percent.
#6 While Barack Obama has been in the White House, the total number of Americans on food stamps has gone from 32 million to nearly 47 million.
#7 Back in the 1970s, about one out of every 50 Americans was on food stamps. Today, about one out of every 6.5 Americans is on food stamps.
#8 It sounds crazy, but the number of Americans on food stamps now exceedsthe entire population of the nation of Spain.
#9 According to one calculation, the number of Americans on food stamps is now greater than the combined populations of “Alaska, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming.”
#10 According to a report from the Center for Immigration Studies, 43 percentof all immigrants that have been in the United States for at least 20 years are still on welfare.
#11 Back in 1965, only one out of every 50 Americans was on Medicaid. Today,more than 70 million Americans are on Medicaid, and it is being projected that Obamacare will add 16 million more Americans to the Medicaid rolls.
#12 The number of Americans on Medicare is projected to grow from a little bit more than 50 million today to 73.2 million in 2025.
#13 Medicare is facing unfunded liabilities of more than 38 trillion dollars over the next 75 years. That comes to approximately $328,404 for each and every household in the United States.
#14 If the number of Americans enrolled in the Social Security disability program were gathered into a single state, it would be the 8th largest state in the entire country.
#15 In 1968, there were 51 full-time workers for every American on disability. Today, there are just 13 full-time workers for every American on disability.
#17 Overall, the Social Security system is facing a 134 trillion dollar shortfallover the next 75 years.
#18 According to the most recent numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau, an all-time record 49.2 percent of all Americans are receiving benefits from at least one government program each month. Back in 1983, less than a third of all Americans lived in a home that received direct monetary benefits from the federal government.
Many will read this and will assume that I am against helping the poor. That is completely and totally not true. There will always be people that are impoverished, and this happens for many reasons. In many cases, people simply lack the capacity to take care of themselves. It is a good thing to take care of such people, whether the money comes from public or private sources. In every society, those that are the most vulnerable need to be looked after.
But it is a very troubling sign that the number of people on government assistance is now far, far greater than the number of people with full-time jobs. This is not a sustainable situation. The federal government is already drowning in debt, and yet more people become dependent on the government with each passing day.
The long-term solution is to get more Americans working or starting their own businesses, but the federal government continues to pursue policies that are absolutely killing the creation of jobs and the creation of small businesses in this country. So our epidemic of government dependence is going to continue to get worse.
And many of these programs are absolutely riddled with fraud and corruption. Just check out the following excerpt from a recent Natural News article…
To understand the extent of this fraudulent waste, go no further than Dr. Salomon Melgen, a Florida ophthalmologist who raked in $20.8 million from Medicare in 2012 alone. Dr. Melgen isn’t the only one bathing in the fraud of this crony government program. Medicare dished out over $1 million to almost 4,000 doctors in 2012, according to the new data release analyzed by The Washington Post.
Jonathan Blum, principal deputy administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, is calling on the public for help in identifying fraud. He says, “The program is funded by and large by taxpayer dollars. The public has a right to know what it is paying for. We know there is fraud in the system. We are asking for the public’s help to check, to find waste, and to find potential fraud.”
Instead of fixing their own problems, they want us to help them do it.
And of course they always want more of our money to help fund these programs. In fact, according to Americans for Tax Reform, Barack Obama has proposed 442 tax increases since entering the White House…
-79 tax increases for FY 2010
-52 tax increases for FY 2011
-47 tax increases for FY 2012
-34 tax increases for FY 2013
-137 tax increases for FY 2014
-93 tax increases for FY 2015
Perhaps not coincidentally, the Obama budget with the lowest number of proposed tax increases was released during an election year: In February 2012, Obama released his FY 2013 budget, with “only” 34 proposed tax increases. Once safely re-elected, Obama came back with a vengeance, proposing 137 tax increases, a personal record high for the 44th President.
The more we feed the monster, the larger and larger it grows.
And yet poverty is not decreasing. In fact, the poverty rate has been at 15 percent or greater for three years in a row. That is the first time that has happened in decades.
Barack Obama promised to “transform” America, and yet poverty and government dependence have just continued to grow during his presidency.
Not that anyone really believes anything that he has to say at this point. In fact, one recent survey found that only 15 percent of Americans believe that Barack Obama always tells the truth and 37 percent believe that he lies “most of the time”…
A Fox News poll released Wednesday shows that six out of every ten Americans believes that President Barack Obama lies to the American people, at least some of the time. A plurality – 37% – say that he lies “most of the time,” while another 24% say he lies “some of the time.” Another 20% say he lies once in awhile, while only 15% say that he never lies.
So what do you think?
Please feel free to share your thoughts by posting a comment below…
Michael T. Snyder is a graduate of the University of Florida law school and he worked as an attorney in the heart of Washington D.C. for a number of years. Today, Michael is best known for his work as the publisher of The Economic Collapse Blog and The American Dream. If you want to know what things in America are going to look like in a few years read his new book The Beginning of the End.