Oh my… Stephen Moore at the Wall Street Journal compared employment levels in the private and public sectors… and it seems that "more Americans work for the government than work in construction, farming, fishing, forestry, manufacturing, mining and utilities combined."
I think this means that every productive worker in the private sector is now supporting his or her very own bureaucrat … with some to spare. And all those gold-plated union-mandated bennies, too!
Being as we're talking about economic stability and not a Rogers & Hammerstein musical called "22 Million Workers For 22 Million Public Employees," I don't see any possible way this can end well.
I just keep picturing a creaking, swaying cart crammed with bossy government nannies holding the reins — and guess who staggering along the road with the bit between his or her teeth. Even before you plop the usual welfare recipients, illegal aliens, etc., on top of the pile, it doesn't take a genius to predict disaster down the road.
If you want to understand better why so many states—from New York to Wisconsin to California—are teetering on the brink of bankruptcy, consider this depressing statistic: Today in America there are nearly twice as many people working for the government (22.5 million) than in all of manufacturing (11.5 million). This is an almost exact reversal of the situation in 1960, when there were 15 million workers in manufacturing and 8.7 million collecting a paycheck from the government.
It gets worse. More Americans work for the government than work in construction, farming, fishing, forestry, manufacturing, mining and utilities combined. We have moved decisively from a nation of makers to a nation of takers. Nearly half of the $2.2 trillion cost of state and local governments is the $1 trillion-a-year tab for pay and benefits of state and local employees. Is it any wonder that so many states and cities cannot pay their bills?
As John at Power Line points out, government this ponderous and corpulent isn't healthy for anyone.
To borrow an analogy from biology, if the parasites overwhelms the host, it is catastrophic for both the host and the parasites. (Which is why viruses aren't really trying to kill you, at least not quickly.) That analogy may be unfair; certainly not all government workers are parasites. Let's try this one: if the cowboy gets bigger than the horse, both the horse and the cowboy are in trouble.