How many of our problems are caused by government, and by which kind of government? Take a little quiz…. (More)

President Ronald Reagan famously said, “Government is not a solution to our problem, government is the problem.”

What Reagan didn’t say is which party in government is the problem. His line is so familiar that it has come to be seen as ‘the truth’ by many of “We the People.” This game is designed to help you decide, based on information and facts, if you’d like to be more specific about which party is your problem.

For the sake of this game, you agree as a player that telling the truth matters and that facts matter. A good story may feel good but if it is lie, you’ve been conned. The real question is, “If facts matter, can you change your mind?”

1. Federal spending has increased as a percentage of GDP since President Obama took office.

____ True

____ False


In January 2009, before President Obama had even taken the oath of office, annual spending was set to total 24.9 percent of gross domestic product. Total spending this year, fiscal year 2012, is expected to top out at 23.4 percent of GDP.

2. Are federal income taxes lower or higher today than when President Obama took office?

____ Lower

____ Higher

See this link for the answer.

3. Is the federal deficit higher or lower as a percentage of GDP today or when President Obama took office:

____ Higher

____ Lower

Check out this chart for your answer.

4. Who inherited what kind of budget, or which President inherited a surplus or a deficit from his predecessor?

President George W. Bush surplus ____ or deficit ____

President Barack Obama surplus ____ or deficit ____

Click here for answer.

5. Have austerity programs in Europe increased GDP growth?

Yes ____

No ____

See the answer in three graphs here.

6. What did Moody Analytics’ Mark Zandi rate “the most serious weight on the job market?” Choose one:

___ federal deficit
___ taxes
___ public sector job cuts
___ regulations

Click here for answer.

7. Is economic mobility higher in right-to-work states compared to states that protect union contracts?

____ yes

____ no

Click here for answer.

Facts matter and the truth matters. Remember, the pea is not under any of the walnut shells if you are playing a con game.