Trying it their way, X
September 27, 2012
Nine times we’ve offered useful lessons in what happens to states where the default policy position is to address high taxes and higher spending by raising taxes for increased spending.
Welcome to Installment Ten, with a twist: Until now, every self-destructive tax-and-spend policy we’ve examined has been freely chosen by individual state governments. This time, one state seeks to export its malpractice, forcing the consequences upon others.
In Illinois—where else?—state government has bought political support from public employee unions by promising benefits it can’t pay for, and is now in hock for well over $200 billion. Evidently, once you’ve gotten into this check-kiting racket, there’s no such thing as saying enough’s enough.
Last Thursday, the Illinois Policy Institute (IPI) noted that Governor Pat Quinn, last seen spinning a special legislative session that did nothing to reform public employee benefits, had long since called for the federal government to bill all the other states for Illinois’ recklessness.
“In his fiscal year 2012 budget, Gov. Pat Quinn said that ‘significant long-term improvements’ to the state’s pension debt will come from, among other things, ‘seeking a federal guarantee of the debt.’”
It’s bad enough when individual states issue what amount to fraudulent contracts. It’s intolerable when they scheme to have their bad debts paid by others who have been honest in their own affairs.
It’s also standard procedure for the crew that’s in charge now in the worst debtor states and in Washington, D.C. Get rid of them this fall, or bury your money in the back yard.