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Where government tax revenues come from

April 25, 2017
Man at office building by Chris Davis via Unsplash

A fascinating project from former Microsoft executive Steven A. Ballmer is now live — offers a great user-friendly look at government data.

The website gives insights on the American population, government finances, and the goverment’s overall impact on society.

In addition to providing data and analysis, there’s also a slick 2017 report which highlights the most interesting data.

Here’s what it had to say about taxes:

Government Revenues

Government Revenues


The biggest chunk of federal, state and local government revenues comes from individual income and payroll taxes. Next are sales, corporate income taxes, and property taxes.

Government Expenditures

Government Expenditures


Government spending is more of a mixed-bag.

Social Security and Medicare comprised 35.2% of federal spending in 2014 ($1.9 trillion), while national defense and veterans services were 14% of federal expenditures in 2014. ($755.2 billion.)

And: One of the most interesting (yet non-surprising) pieces of data is that the biggest group of government employees work in education (10.9 million.) Public safety officers numbered 1,151,802 in 2015, and there are (randomly) almost 12,000 state liquor store employees. 🥂

The full report is here.

Photo: Chris Davis.

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