Tomorrow will be a better day, because it’s the first day you start working for yourself and your family. From January 1 until today, though, you’ve been working to pay for the cost of government. And it’s a month more than we were working just two years ago.

Cost of Government Day, calculated by Americans for Tax Reform, reflects how long the average American must work to pay the cost of government — all federal, state and local government spending and regulatory costs.

This year, we worked 231 days to pay for big government. That’s a full month later than 2008, and eight days later than 2009.

That means so far this year you haven’t worked to pay for food, clothing, education, shelter, anything. You’ve been working to feed the gaping maw of big-government.

According to ATR, the average American worked 104 days to pay for federal spending this year, 52 days to pay for state and local spending, and a whopping 74 days to pay for government regulation.

On interesting side note about the cost of government was this jewel about tax competition.

Due to the ease of interstate movement, taxpayers can easily avoid higher taxes by moving to another state. As such, there is a significant Laffer effect wherein a rise in tax rates can lead to lower government revenues as individuals flee the state. There are nine states with no income tax – Alaska, Florida, Nevada, New Hampshire, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Washington and Wyoming. In 2008 alone these states gained a net total of over 80,000 new residents from the other 41 states. These migrants brought with them over $900 million of net adjusted income according to IRS data.

In contrast, the ten states with the highest tax burden, California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Vermont, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania lost around 129,455 residents and $10.2 billion of net-adjusted income in 2008 alone.

From 1998 through 2008, the ten states with the highest tax burden lost over 3 million residents. These residents took with them a staggering $92 billion in income.

And just think, Texas liberals like Bill White and some lefty legislators want to make the Lone Star State less attractive, with tax hikes, imposing an income tax, and generally much bigger government.

Barack Obama is making it ever more impossible for folks to save and achieve, but making government more expensive. And you can assume his Texas protege, Bill “Obama in Boots” White, is eager to do an equal amount of damage here.

Michael Quinn Sullivan

Michael Quinn Sullivan is the publisher of Texas Scorecard. He is a native Texan, a graduate of Texas A&M, and Eagle Scout. Previously, he has worked as a newspaper reporter, magazine contributor, Capitol Hill staffer, think tank vice president. Michael and his wife have three adult children, and a dog. Check out his podcast, Reflections on Life and Liberty.

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