- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 3, 2010

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Mark Steyn’s excellent Monday Commentary column, “Talking the talk,” alerts us to the continued accretion of control at the federal level. Mr. Steyn notes that the Obama administration sees more government as the solution rather than the problem and is thus accelerating government expansion.

I would like to add to his analysis by illustrating the high price tag of such expansion. The cost in wages and benefits of the “average” federal employee is about $84,000 a year. Meanwhile, every married couple with a combined income of $100,000 before taxes will pay about $14,000 in federal income taxes. So it will exhaust the total tax payments of six such couples to pay for a single federal employee - while leaving nothing to fund defense, social programs, interest on the national debt or coverage of any other federal obligations.

Furthermore, if any of these six are government employees or federal retirees, their net contributions are further reduced. Because the government cannot pay itself, it can only obtain revenues from outside itself - the private sector. For that reason, job creation in the private sector is infinitely more important than adding jobs to the government payroll. This isn’t theory; it is arithmetic.

COL. FRANKLYN J. SELZER

Air Force (retired)

Fairfax, Va.


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