It's not especially good at taxing or spending, though it's done enough of both to destroy us. The tax code is designed more to punish and reward than to collect revenue. It's such a mess that no one knows what anyone owes. Enforcement is spotty and arbitrary. You'd think that spending would be easier, but apparently it's a challenge for these idiots. Unknown billions are still sitting around unspent from TARP, Stimulus I & II. . .hell, a report came out a couple of years ago showing that the feds had yet to unload some appropriations from the Bush 41 administration. I'm sure that politicians would rather put our money in their own pockets or blow it on vote-buying schemes, but they seem satisfied as long as WE don't have it anymore.