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« Quotational Therapy: Part 137 -- Friedman, On Equality. | WILLisms.com | Not-So-LOL Terizt »

Trivia Tidbit Of The Day: Part 447 -- State Government Spending Correlates With Domestic Migration.

Americans Voting With Their Feet-

The Cato Institute today released an analysis of Portland, Oregon, and one of the findings was that Portland's over-the-top central planning has actually made the city less livable. Indeed, people are voting with their feet, moving elsewhere, where the impact of government is lower. An interesting read for those who believe that policies matter.

The Manhattan Institute for Policy Research has some data on their website available for downloading, and I juxtaposed two of the data sets:


Notice that as state government spending rises, domestic in-migration falls-- and eventually becomes out-migration (see chart: .pdf). In other words, there is a strong correlation between the size of state governments and the "people climate."

People tend to flow from states with high government spending to states with low government spending. Ultimately, it's people that matter. People are the drivers of economic growth and prosperity. People are the source of political power.

The above graph is strictly domestic or internal migration, not international migration. This also leaves out rates of fecundity. This graph is purely a way to visualize the way actual Americans respond to government incentives. High spending, it turns out, is NOT what people really want.

This is precisely why we should shrink the size of the federal government as much as possible and let the states compete. We would see more innovation, and bad ideas couldn't hide out and linger quite as long as they do now.


Previous Trivia Tidbit: Big Government.

Posted by Will Franklin · 9 July 2007 05:29 PM


If you ask those remaining in Portland they'll tell you they want people to leave. That's now, ask them in 10 or 15 years when the city is out of money and they'll tell you something else. When the money is gone none of them will be able to explain why all the alleged improvements they made didn't actually boost the population and revenues. That'll be the story when they ask the feds to bail them out.

Posted by: Bullwinkle at July 9, 2007 06:22 PM