"...for the first time since the Great Depression, Americans took more aid from the government than they paid in taxes."

Jillian Bandes
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Posted: Mar 03, 2010 9:10 AM

That's the choice line out of The Washington Times, where reporter Patrice Hill explains the dismal state of the economy -- with a focus on welfare.

Economic growth typically depends on consumer spending, which is fed by wages, rents, interest and other forms of income. But the tentative revival of consumer spending in the second half of last year appears to have been fed largely by an extraordinary flood of government spending, as growth in other kinds of income has disappeared.

Seems as though the time to pony up for all that government spending has come around quicker than we thought. Jonah Goldberg at NRO responds:

The aim of progressivism since at least FDR has been to turn citizens into clients. Under the conservative vision, governments depend on citizens to maintain their legitimacy, not to mention their revenue.

Well said.