THE LAST DITCH An Englishman returned after twenty years abroad blogs about liberty in Britain
The state's puppy dog
In what mad world?

A revenue problem or a spending problem?


I know that most of my readers are in Britain and am aware that your comments are fewer when I post about other places. Where, however, would I find a funded-by-extortion British professor uttering such words as:

No matter how robustly our tax revenues grow, government always finds a way to spend everything it collects - plus more.

I loved his comment that America would have been better off asking its physicians to reform government than its politicians to reform healthcare, since the per capita increase in healthcare costs since the 1950s is an outrageous 2,000% but the per person cost of government has risen 3,000%. To put that in context, other costs have risen by a mere 700%, which rather suggests to me that both healthcare and government should be privatised.

I would be fascinated (and probably horrified) to see a similar analysis of inflation- and population-adjusted increases in government spending since the 1950s in the UK.


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Nigel Sedgwick

Here is your requested plot. Inflation is indexed to 2005 £ Sterling and the spending is per capita:

Best regards

james higham

am aware that your comments are fewer when I post about other places

That can mean a number of things, Tom, for example just learning, rather than commenting.


Thanks for sharing this, Tom. Math is math, and is inexorable.

One day, it will have to end, either voluntarily (we can hope) or involuntarily (I fear).


It depends on how the figures are structured and calculated. I get very fed up with TV using price comparisons with the past on the basis of ONS retail and wholesale prices when they are talking about things other than consumer goods entirely. Some of the figures suggested are quite barmy.

The comments to this entry are closed.