If I have an irritant in my eye, and I choose to try to dislodge the offending particle by repeatedly whapping myself in the face with a ball-peen hammer, how many whaps shall I allow my face to withstand before, say, splashing some water on the little bugger instead?
How many whaps does it take to convince one the method has failed? Apparently, with regard to supply-side “trickle down” economics, 40 years of whaps doesn’t quite cut it. This next whap, surely, will do the trick.
From the Toledo Blade:
The presidential election is over, and Gov. John Kasich’s campaign boasts about Ohio’s rising economy eclipsing the rest of the nation have been replaced with the suggestion that the state is on “the verge of recession.”
After years of budget surpluses that allowed him to replenish the state’s budgetary reserves and consistently cut income taxes, revenue predictions have trended downward for months, and clouds of uncertainty hover over his next and final two-year budget…
“There’s a lot of tough decisions that need to be made up front,” he said. “Sometimes it’s easy to ignore the tough decisions, but we can’t do that.”
Through November, five months into the fiscal year, state tax collections were off $259.1 million, or 2.8 percent, below what was projected. Adding in federal grants, investment earnings, license fees, and other sources of revenue, the state is running $706.7 million, or 4.8 percent, behind.
It’s not just an issue of slower-than-expected growth or overly optimistic projections. Ohio has moved backward, collecting $107.3 million, or 1.2 percent, less than it took in during the same period last year.
Looking at all sources of revenue, the state is down $362.6 million, or 2.5 percent, from this point last year.
Oh good. And now, facing recession and significant revenue shortfalls, our Republican leaders are looking at giving the oil and gas industry a $264 million tax break.
Witness in full plume John Kasich’s “Ohio Miracle.”
The truth is, unless they’re fantastically stupid, Republican leaders know “trickle down” doesn’t work. How could you look at case after case and 40 years of empirical evidence and conclude otherwise? That’s why they need gimmicks like dynamic scoring to keep the grift running.
So why do they persist in this method they know doesn’t work? Because they don’t give a shit whether trickle down works.
Under this smooth evasion, they get their tax cuts; they get deregulation for their businesses; and the resulting recessions further move wealth toward the hands of the few, as they always do.
Besides, these times where “tough decisions need to be made” give them an excuse to slash and burn funding for social services in the name of combatting “big government,” rendering it as dysfunctional as they always claim it to be.
For them, it’s the best of all worlds.
The problem is, historically (throughout every civilization recorded), this type of blind avarice and exploitation inevitably leads to epic calamity. And it’s coming soon to a U.S. Congress near you.
D.C. DeWitt is a writer and man of sport and leisure. He has also written for Government Executive’s RouteFifty.com, the National Journal’s The Hotline, and The New York Observer’s Politicker.com. He is the Associate Editor of The Athens NEWS in Athens, Ohio. DeWitt can be found on Facebook and Twitter @DC_DeWitt.
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