Government spending in context

Spending vs GDP

If government spending means we are ‘almost bankrupt’ now, how come it didn’t in the early 1980s? Looks to me like 40% with a variance of 5 or so points either way has been the norm since the end of WWII.

Each major peak in that post-war period appears to match with a recession (when GDP falls, so even constant spending would register as an uptick).

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