July 16 was Cost of Government Day, according to Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. The average American worked until July 16 to pay a share of all the costs government imposes on us which now consume 53.9 percent of national income. This is the latest in the year that the day has fallen since 1992.
Perhaps you've heard of Tax Freedom Day, when we would (finally) be finished paying all our taxes if government had taken every single bit of our income until that day. Norquist and his organization have refined the calculation a bit by including the extra costs the government imposes on us through regulations, price supports, tariffs and a whole host of interventions into the economy.
As compared with when President Bush assumed office in 2001, federal spending consumes three more days of your life, while federal regulations (which had remained stable for the previous four years) take another full day. State and local spending consume another six days just since 2003.
Can government that takes more than half the national income produced be sustained much longer?