It's important to never take any ranking you find seriously.

There is so much about them that is either misguided, misjudged, biased, or just bad research.

Still, sometimes the question is interesting.

The website SmartAsset ranked "States Most Dependent on the Federal Government".

But we have to have a look at how the state is dependent.

For various reasons, each state gets a different amount of federal funding.

It's also important to look at where that money goes.

SmartAsset rankings were based on:

1). The number of federal employees.

2). The percentage of government revenue and the ratio of federal funding to income taxes paid.


Scan down the list we find that Wyoming comes in at:

9. Wyoming
Wyoming easily has the highest percentage of revenue coming straight from the federal government. The state’s federal share of revenue is at 56.43%, higher than all 50 states. As for the other metrics, it did poorly as well.

But Smartasset has not factored in that the federal government owns 48.19 percent of Wyoming's total land, 30,043,512 acres out of 62,343,040 total acres. Wyoming ranked eighth in the nation in federal land ownership.

With that much federal land and federal assents to manage, including coal, gas, oil, uranium, rare earth minerals, ranching and farming land, hunting, camping, fishing, and other outdoor activities, it's no wonder Wyoming takes in so much money directly.

You can read the full ranking list at this link.

Surging Oil Industry Brings Opportunity To Rural California
Getty Images

If most of Wyoming was owned by the people of Wyoming the amount of federal money coming into the state would look very different.

As far as ranking on the amount of income taxes paid, Wyoming is the least populated state in the nation. Not a lot of income tax goes to the federal government from here. Yet the feds own and manage most of the land.

Let's face it, Smartasset did not think this all the way through.

This is why we should never take rankings like these seriously.

Devils Tower As Seen From The Mother Ship

If you've see the movie (documentary) Close Encounters Of The Third Kind, then you know what it looked like to see "The Mother Ship" descending down to Devils Tower.

But what did it look like from the Mother Ship's point of view?

We don't have any actual photos from the Mother Ship

So we recreated the scene using Google Earth and one Nasa Photo.

Reading The Past - Chugwater Wyoming Newspaper

These pages of the old Chugwter Wyoming newspaper show us coverage of the region from back in the 1940s.

There was little local news, other than the war.

But what was published at the time was important to the people of the area.

It was, in most case, the only news they had from outside their little ranch or town.

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