"What Is Driving Growth in Government Spending?"
Nate Silver explains. There's isn't much to surprise anyone who's been paying attention, but I think the final two paragraphs are good and very important:
Nevertheless, the declining level of trust in government since the 1970s is a fairly close mirror for the growth in spending on social insurance as a share of the gross domestic product and of overall government expenditures. We may have gone from conceiving of government as an entity that builds roads, dams and airports, provides shared services like schooling, policing and national parks, and wages wars, into the world’s largest insurance broker.
Most of us don’t much care for our insurance broker.