7/16/2009

States of Disrepair

We can learn lessons from state's failed 'Progressive' programs.

Most good conservative thinkers make the Federalist argument that we should strive to limit the power and reach of the federal government, and instead leave most matters to be handled by the individual states.

However, recent events might give many conservatives pause concerning this cornerstone philosophy, given that some states have been acting like teenagers who have been handed the keys to the liquor cabinet and family car on the same key chain.

Take for instance articles from today concerning three of the most prominent 'Blue' states.

New York - The Obsolete New York Model: Where a tax-eating majority votes itself a permanent income....Struggling under the accumulated burden of eight decades of “progressive” government, we New Yorkers can serve as a warning to our fellow Americans as President Obama, following the New Deal playbook, seeks to use the current financial crisis to provide a new rationale and legitimacy for the gargantuan machinery of the federal government.

California - Following Calif. Off A Green Cliff: Climate Change: A 2006 California law meant to lead the way on global warming looks like an economic disaster in the making. So far, Congress and Obama have ignored the warnings.

Massachusetts - Bay State Rationing: Health Care: Massachusetts' universal medical program is no longer universal. Coverage is being dropped for 30,000 because not enough money is around to pay for everyone. There's a lesson in this for Congress.

The running theme here is that these states have implemented unsustainable government largesse, and show us exactly what President Obama's proposed programs will bring us on a national scale. They are the cure that makes the disease worse.

Of course, one only need compare these examples to other states that have fared much better. To be parochial, I will trumpet my adopted home state....

Texas - Going Alamo: Why jobs and companies are flocking to a big small-government state. If you want to know where the future is headed, look where the people are going. And if you want to know where the people are going, check with U-Haul. Here's an interesting indicator, first noted by the legendary economist Arthur Laffer: Renting a 26-foot U-Haul truck to go from Austin to San Francisco this July would cost you about $900. Renting the same truck to go from San Francisco to Austin? About $3,000. In the great balance of supply and demand, California has a large supply of people who are demanding to move to Texas. There's a reason for this.

God help me if I ever get orders to PCS to California!