Tuesday, February 15, 2005

I'm the Only One in the World...

...who wants higher taxes.

So I was talking to my dad, and he starts telling me (again) that some sort of poll named Tom Kean the best New Jersey governor in recent memory. Apparently, tied for worst were McGreevey and Florio. This brought me to the realization that people are idiots.

Not about Kean - he was a very good governor, really. He was pretty (in my mind, at least) moderate, and fiscally responsible, and the state had a budget surplus when he was in charge. Good thinking, and good work.

And McGreevey, OK, I can see why people think he was the worst. In my mind, he wasn't actually the worst, but possibly one of the most recognizably corrupt. That's pretty bad. Real estate scandals, inappropriate appointments, and of course the whole "my governor is a gay American" thing, they don't speak well of the man. I don't think that he was a bad legislator, I just think that his personal conscience took a vacation without leaving a forwarding address. Not good thinking.

But Florio? People hated Florio because he raised the NJ sales tax by a whopping... 1%. One percent! It wasn't making that much of a dent in our damn pockets! I think it was 3 seconds after she got sworn in to office that Christie Whitman repealed that tax and brought us back down to 6%. I know that she's very moderate in many of her views, but she got elected the "traditional" Republican way - promise to cut taxes. And then she did. (Which actually, kind of speaks well about her character, but I'm talking about fiscal policy, here)

Why were people so up in arms about one more penny on the dollar? I know that a lot of folks say "I earned it, I want to keep it", but do they think that government programs pay for themselves? Because they don't! It's not getting cheaper to run the state, people, it's getting more expensive, just like everything else on earth, except DVD players. What would have happened if we had kept the extra sales tax? Would we be $4 billion dollars in the hole today? Probably not. I'm not saying that we'd have a surplus, but I'm sure it would have helped a great deal.

Republicans talk about streamlining government, but when push comes to shove, you see them spending just as much as Democrats - but with tax cuts, so less money is coming in. If we're going to have state-run programs that everyone seems to feel are a right, instead of the privilege that they actually are, then someone has to pay for it. I'd prefer the money to come from big business, but in today's climate that's not going to happen. And when it comes down to the choice of my state racking up billions of dollars in debt or me paying $107.00 for that wireless Ethernet adapter instead of $106.00, well, I'm willing to suck it up.

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