Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

Pot, Kettle

Remember last week when my in-laws vowed to prevent a single dime of their tax money from going to bail out California? And I kindly pointed out (in my head at least) that if they wanted to rally against blood-sucking-leech-states, their protests could start a little closer to home?

Well, someone else has noted the same:

It isn’t surprising that the more Republican a state leans, the more likely it is to be furious about government spending. But what is surprising is that states with the highest anti-spending sentiment appear to be the largest beneficiaries of government spending. Not only do red states swallow the lion’s share of government spending, but Richardson found a linear relationship between the extent of GOP support in a state—and, by implication, the fervor of its anti-government sentiment—and the amount of federal largesse the state receives.

The 28 states where George W. Bush won more than 50 percent of the vote in 2004 received an average of $1.32 for every dollar contributed. The 19 states where Bush received less than 50 percent of the vote collected 93 cents on the dollar.

Strange, isn’t it? It’s almost as if there were some deep psychological need to outwardly bash the things one secretly needs and desires.


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A friend of mine who’s a huge Danzig fan maintains that this was a sucker punch (nsfw):

I’m not so sure. I say if you shove somebody in the face, you should be on the lookout for a knuckle sandwich. Pretty much immediately. But if you want to see a *real* sucker punch, check out Allysia Finley’s swipe at California this week in the Wall Street Journal.

California: The Lindsay Lohan of States

Your government’s run by a brothel of environmentalists, lawyers, public-sector unions and legislative bums. When they’re not taxing or spending, they’re creating regulations and commissions like the Board of Barbering and Cosmetology and the California Blueberry Commission. Many businesses would leave if it weren’t for your sunny climate.

You appropriately give your government low marks — 28% approval for outgoing Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, 16% for the legislature — yet you continue to re-elect the politicians who got you into this mess. Not a single incumbent state legislator lost re-election this year, including one Democrat who died a month ago (no joke). What’s scarier is that you’ve just given almost all of the keys to statewide offices to Democrats.


So here’s our final warning: When you inevitably crash and burn, don’t count on us to bail you out.

Look, there’s plenty wrong on the Gold Coast — pension liabilities, the dying film industry, womens’ obsession with tweezing their eyebrows — but is this what passes for journalism these days? Was there no editor at the Wall Street Journal compelled to call Ms. Finley into his/her office and say, “Thanks for making your deadline, Allysia. But did you realize that California generates more federal tax revenue that any other state, and that it gives more tax money to the federal government than it receives in return, and that, as such, it is subsidizing much of the federal funding of other states? And, oh by the way, would mentioning these facts give your column a little more nuance?”

If Finley does anything well, it’s document the disgust people have for California. I should know; I just spent the last 3 weeks listening to my Alabaman in-laws scoff at every passing mention of California’s budget crisis. “Your state is in danger of going broke? Tough crap, Larry Flyntland. You’re not not getting any of our money.” [I’m paraphrasing here.]

It’s a semi-defensible point of view . . . until you check out this table of how much each state gave the federal government (in 2005) compared to what it took in return:

Assuming these numbers are correct (I didn’t make them up, but someone else might have), for every dollar California sent the federal government, it got back 78 cents. For ever dollar the state of Alabama sent, it got back $1.65.

Sign me up for the latter.

And if California is the Lindsay Lohan of states, Ms. Finley, who exactly is Alabama-New Mexico-Mississippi-Alaska-Louisiana-West Virginia-North Dakota-South Dakota-Kentucky-Virginia-Montana?

Dina Lohan, maybe?

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