Many years ago, and by "many" I mean about 20, I decided to embark on a mission to pull all the data I could and empirically prove or disprove all the economic philosophies and beliefs I held. In short I didn't want a "philosophy" or "belief" or "ideology," I wanted proof. I was sick of arguing with leftists and liberals, sick of wasting logic or common sense on pointless college-student-late-dorm-room-night debates, and all I wanted was some simple, mathematical proof I could point to and say, "There. Now have a cup of STFU."
And about 20 years ago, I did precisely that. Arguably one of my best charts I ever compiled proved me correct - government spending as a percentage of GDP versus economic growth. Albeit boring and now making your eyes glaze over like Ben Stein in Ferris Bueller's Day off, the chart showed a NEGATIVE correlation between government spending and economic growth with a correlation coefficient of around .3.
The problem is that was 20 years ago and the data I had was not the greatest, merely what was available on the OECD at the time. So I figured it was time to pull new data and see if this relationship still held true. And boy howdy has it!
Not only did the relation between government and economic growth continue to be negative, but the strength of the relationship increased to a correlation coefficient of -.55 (-.56 if you only use a decade's worth of data).
Now like all economic studies there are caveats and considerations. The data above does not include Japan, Canada, New Zealand, Mexico, China or Greece. I have NO idea why the OECD doesn't have enough data on these countries to make a 20 year study, but they simply don't (though the 10 year correlation I calculated DOES include Japan). So it's merely the data I had to work with. And of course, the OECD does not include most 2nd and 3rd world nations. Only the nations who have been providing them with their economic data. Still, all these asides, if we are to look at the EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE economic growth is VERY NEGATIVELY correlated with the size of government. Even more so since you'd think SPENDING as a percentage of GDP would correlate positively with economic growth...but that is in a deluded Keynesian wet-dream world.
Regardless, this new data only merely re-proves what we all know to be logical and common sense:
A freer people are a more productive people. If you let people keep the majority of their wealth and fruits of their labor they will work more, create more, innovate more, and your economy will grow more. It's not only logical and empirically proven, it's simply moral. Of course, the parasites of society will whine and contest and complain otherwise, desperate to use the force of government to enslave you to support them, but it doesn't change the fact that a smaller government results in a better and ever-more progressing society. The issue is simply if society wants to vote for parasitism and dependency of excellence and independence.