Good news: There’s no recession…

Victor Joecks

for the government. The private-sector economy has taken a beating, though.

While the private sector has shed 6.9 million jobs since the beginning of the recession, state and local governments have expanded their payrolls and added 110,000 jobs, according to a report issued Thursday by the Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government.

The report, based on an analysis of federal jobs data, found that state and local governments steadily added jobs for eight months after the recession began in December 2007, with their employment peaking last August. State and local governments have since lost 55,000 jobs, but from the beginning of the recession through last month they gained a net of 110,000 jobs, the report found, in part because of the federal stimulus program.

And the money to fund these public-sector jobs is coming either directly from us in the form of higher taxes, or from our children in the form of higher debt, which will lead to higher taxes.

The expansion, coming as many states and localities are raising taxes, troubled Tad DeHaven, a budget analyst for the Cato Institute, a libertarian research group in Washington. “That is disturbing,” Mr. DeHaven said. “Basically what you have is your producers in society losing their jobs and looking for work, and their tax burden isn’t necessarily going down – and as a matter of fact they are likely to face tax increases going forward – and government growing.”

Although Nevada passed a record-setting, job-killing, billion dollar, secret tax increase less than three months ago, the Interim Finance Committee is already meeting to “study” Nevada’s tax structure. And by “study,” of course, it means “try to justify another tax increase.”

Since the government can take your money, there never has to be a recession – for the government.