That is a translation of a quote from Louis XIV of France who supposedly said "L'Etat, c'est moi".
That's the beauty of crowdsourcing, no one knows everything but everyone knows something.
I recognized that and gave that as an answer, just for kicks, even though it asked for English and not French.
Die "Eisendame," except that, along with Ronnie Reagan, she did it for the aristocratic, corporate executive class! "Die Staat sind WIR" and not meaning Wir, die Leute....
Der Staat is pronounced correctly. Stadt would be definitely shorter. Cheers. (But you are right about Start, one could mishear it.)
Except that in German he'd be Ludwig. I was very confused the first time I met this in a discussion including König Karl (of England). When it turned to König Heinrich and all his wives, I finally cottoned on!