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Warning.svg1_-300x277Is the government ever better than the private sector at doing anything? I say yes, it is better at grossly mismanaging just about everything it touches.

The latest case in point is the poster child for government bureaucracy and inefficiency, the U.S. Postal Service. This quasi-government entity just reported an annual loss of a record $15.9 billion for the year, a dismal showing that came along with a foreboding forecast for more red ink in 2013.

Last year, the Postal Service defaulted on billions of dollars in payments in an effort to avert bankruptcy. Meanwhile, the flailing entity also reached its borrowing limit. Lack of operating capital, huge payments due for future retiree health benefits and a lack of revenue from changing consumer habits has exposed this agency for the anachronism that it has become—and that’s despite its monopoly on first-class mail delivery.

What the Postal Service’s troubles highlight is one of many big government threats to your prosperity, because ultimately, the taxpayers are the ones who are going to pay the price for this governmental folly.

Here are five big-government threats to your prosperity that you need to understand and prepare for now, before they take you by surprise and gobble up your hard-earned money.

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