Few people outside of the DC area are likely to notice, but the recent snowstorm shut down the federal government today. Another big snow is on the way, so the feds are also taking tomorrow off.
The Washington Post reports:
Official estimate [sic] that closing the federal government for a day due to the weather costs roughly $100 million in lost productivity and opportunity costs, meaning this weekend’s storm will have potentially cost taxpayers at least $250 million, for last Friday’s early dismissal and Monday’s and Tuesday’s closures.
That is dwarfed, of course, by the opportunity costs of having a $3.8 trillion federal government in the first place. Not to mention the productivity losses.The federal government spends $49.1 billion enforcing regulations that cost nearly $1.2 trillion. if even half of that were freed up, imagine the good that would come of it.
The billions and billions of dollars spent on earmarks and stimulus would do far more good if that money stayed in the productive sector, subject to the self-correcting mechanisms of profit and loss.
In short: America benefits when Washington busybodies take a few days off. So enjoy it while it lasts.
There is great wisdom in Mark Twain’s famous adage: “No man’s life, liberty, or property are safe while the congress is in session.”