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The Biggest Government in History
Brian Maher

Today we sink to both knees… in gobsmacked awe.

We genuflect in praise. And we sing hosannas to the government of the United States.


That is because the United States government has attained the impossible:

Constructed initially under a regime of “limited government”… it has shattered all its shackles… and become the largest government to ever occupy Earth.

That is correct.

Never has a national government — of any nation of Earth — swollen to such gargantuan dimensions.

Its number of agencies, bureaus and departments presently exceeds 440.

Mr. Michael Snyder of The Economic Collapse site:

Today, the United States has the biggest government in the history of the world, and it gets even bigger with each passing year… The federal government spent $6.13 trillion in 2023. That figure is larger than the GDP of every nation on the entire planet except for the U.S. and China.

Bigger Than Communist China!

As a proportion of the gross domestic product… the United States government bulks larger than even China’s communist government.

The United States government devours some 36% of the gross domestic product.

The communist government of China — meantime — devours 33% of the gross domestic product.

How do you like it?

What about Mr. Putin’s totalitarian hell, Russia?

Russia’s governmental proportion is precisely the United States’ governmental proportion — 36% of the gross domestic product.

The free and democratic nation of Ukraine… meantime… which the United States arms against Russian barbarity… boasts a government that commands 66% of the gross domestic product.

We next direct our attention to the freedom-wrecking theocracy of Iran.

This is the Iran that presently menaces Israel, Saudi Arabia, the United States and, if rumor proves true, Pluto.

Only an all-consuming government can menace the world after such a fashion.

Yet this Iranian government gobbles a mere 12% of the gross domestic product. But how?

Not since the post-New Deal year of 1941 has the United States consecrated fewer resources to government.

Is this Islamic theocracy or Jefferson-style democracy?

The Overwhelming Cost of Freedom

Yet freedom is not free. And we are heart and soul for American freedom. Thus we shoulder the burden with a singing heart.

It is no burden at all in fact. It is a joy. And to guarantee American freedom…

The United States government must command a greater proportion of the gross domestic product than communist China.

It must command the identical proportion as dictatorial Russia.

And it must command triple the proportion as theocratic Iran.

It may surprise you to learn that American freedom expands in direct proportion to American debt.

Tyrannical America required 205 years to acquire $1 trillion of debt.

Only in 1981 did it cross that liberating threshold — and into freedom’s realms.

Forty-three years later it is over $34 trillion in debt. It is consequently 34 times freer, and thank the Lord.

The Greatest Liberating Force in American History

At this point we must credit the most liberating force in American history. That of course is the post-1971 dollar.

For the pre-1971 dollar — the gold-backed dollar — was freedom’s enemy.

As we have written before: Gold is inert. It resists the forces of progress… and social uplift.

The greater good is beyond its care and it lacks all human compassion.

Gold has the civic spirit of a cat.

Gold cares not one whit for anything but itself — freedom included.

Meantime, gold turns from the sound of trumpets. “You go over there,” gold tells the freedom-loving paper dollar. “I’ll stay here.”

Paper money, fiat money, this is the money of freedom.

It guarantees freedom at home — and facilitates freedom’s export abroad.

See Iraq. See Afghanistan. See Libya.

See, with luck, Iran.

The Liberation of the Constitution

As we are thankful for the liberation of American money, we are thankful for the liberation of American law.

For example: Article 1, Section 10, Clause 1 of the United States Constitution reads, in part:

“No State shall… make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts.”

Is there one state today that accepts gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts?

The answer is no. Each state has wrung free from the golden handcuffs that once bound them.

Joy abounds in heaven because of it.

Thus we celebrate the demise of the Old Testament Constitution, the “government shalt not” Constitution.

And we celebrate the triumph of the New Testament Constitution, the “government shall” Constitution.

This is the Constitution of freedom.

The “government shall not” Constitution bound and shackled the federal authority. It jailed it in. Thus it jailed freedom in.

The liberating “government shall” Constitution struck the fetters.

The “government shall” Constitution is the warrant for the New Deal, the Great Society and every similar expansion of American freedom.

The original “government shall not” text remains, it is true. Its procedures and formalities remain.

The constitutional republic has its three branches of government. It has its official separation of powers — in theory at least. It has its protocols and decorums.

That is, the “government shall not” Constitution’s skeletal structure is intact.

Yet take a scalpel in hand. Knife your way through the outer layers… past the intermediate tissues… to the innards, to the vital organs.

There you find the “government shall” Constitution.

The Future of Freedom

Our co-founders Bill Bonner and Addison Wiggin, from Empire of Debt:

Institutions have a way of evolving over time — after a few years, they no longer resemble the originals. Early in the 21st century, the United States is no more like the America of 1776 than the Vatican under the Borgia popes was like Christianity at the time of the Last Supper…

The United States Constitution is almost exactly the same document with exactly the same words it had when it was written, but the words that used to bind and chafe have been turned into soft elastic.

The government that couldn’t tax, couldn’t spend and couldn’t regulate can now do anything it wants. The executive has all the power he needs to do practically anything. Congress goes along, like a simpleminded stooge, insisting only that the spoils be spread around.

And so American freedom expands. We enjoy its manifold blessings.

What is more, we maintain resolute and unshakable faith in freedom’s future. Its forward march will proceed.

On some distant tomorrow… if the gods are kind… the United States government will absorb 100% of the gross domestic product.

On that brilliant day the United States — at last — will enter Eden.

It will attain absolute and perfect freedom…




Brian Maher is the Daily Reckoning’s Managing Editor. Before signing on to Agora Financial, he was an independent researcher and writer who covered economics, politics and international affairs. His work has appeared in the Asia Times and other news outlets around the world. He holds a Master’s degree in Defense & Strategic Studies.

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