Wednesday, July 27, 2005

A picture is worth a thousand words, except when the words are Hayek's 

Craig Westover posts an analysis of the dueling conservatives on the pages of the STrib. (I can almost imagine the editorial board's glee over this; one might call it a Boydgasm.) Craig writes:
In his essay �Why I Am Not a Conservative,� Friedrich Hayek notes that conservatism traditionally lacks any agenda other than to resist progressivism. Consequently, any time conservatism compromises with progressivism the end result is movement to the left.
Link added by me, and all I wish to contribute is this graph showing the change in the cost of government (computations here used this document for previous years, and then the fiscal staff analysis of the tax bill HF 138 to add on the new taxfeechargeotherrevenue.)
You can wave your hands and say "hey, it's just two cents on a Hamilton" if you like. I hear you can get a baseball stadium for around that price. But the point made by Eibensteiner and Hinderaker, that
... Pawlenty has been spectacularly successful in containing state spending. In his first year in office, he closed a $4.5 billion deficit -- without raising taxes by a nickel. Beween 1994 and 2002, spending in Minnesota ballooned out of control, rising an average of 13.4 percent per biennium. Under Pawlenty's leadership, the rate of growth has been cut nearly in half, to 7.3 percent per biennium, bringing it in line with population growth and inflation.
...isn't the case when what one is grading against instead is the share of Minnesotans' incomes that government takes. That means, in fact, that the government isn't just taking population growth and inflation, it's also taking its cut of the productivity gains we create as well.

Are we doomed to state and local government in Minnesota perpetually costing us $.16 of each dollar we earn? That downward tail on the graph is the projection that we're told will come in the 2008-09 biennium, and we're to believe it will be created by the re-election of Tim Pawlenty,
What about the tax increase on cigarettes that prompted Wigley and Strom's attack? It constitutes a mere 1.3 percent of the state's budget. Perfection is great, but it is hard to achieve when the tax-and-spend party controls one house of the Legislature.
...who's sold as Governor Straddle.