Saturday, February 19, 2011

Stop Saying We Are Broke

Now that the Arizona Legislature has passed $538 million a year in new corporate welfare, can we stop saying that Arizona is broke?  The argument for the last few years has been that we need to cut state spending because we don't have the money to balance our budget.  In fact, that was the argument used when Governor Brewer sought a waiver to cut $540 a million a year from the state's Medicaid program, ACCCHS.

Saying we are broke is a lie.  Our state has revenue shortfalls primarily due to our over reliance on sales taxes and our constant cutting of other taxes such as property and income.  Of course, those that lie about the state being broke while shoveling out corporate welfare are the same ones who lie about tax cuts paying for themselves.  The myth that tax cuts somehow generate more revenue for the state is perpetuated by those who have sworn allegiance to Grover Norquist and his "starve the beast" scheme.

In fact, the adherents of Grover Norquist have also sworn to not raise taxes.  In Arizona that's an easy promise to make as it takes a 3/4ths majority of both house of the legislature to raise taxes and only a simple majority to cut taxes.  They keep braying that people don't want higher taxes, which is another lie, since the voters of Arizona approved a temporary 1 cent increase in the sales tax for three years to help prevent cuts in education and other programs.

No, Arizona isn't broke, its just run by a bunch of mental midgets who have sworn their allegiance to Grover Norquist and his Milton Friedman ideals.

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