The N&O, predictably, is still lamenting the “life changing, lousy consequences” that will result from the recently-passed state budget that only expands the state budget by – gasp! – one-third over ten years ago. The underlying premise behind this hyperbolic rhetoric, of course, is that every social ill is caused by you darn citizens keeping too much of the income you earn.
A Utopian society in North Carolina can be achieved, according to the N&O, simply by charging an extra penny on the dollar of consumer purchases. Who could be against that?
What the N&O leaves out, as always, is how the government gets the money to spend on its programs in the first place. They lament the state government jobs “lost” but refuse to point out that every dollar going to finance a government job means a dollar less for productive, private sector jobs and wealth creation. There can be no net increase in jobs. And because this transfer involves taxation that discourages private productive activity, along with extracting the amount of resources available for productive investments, jobs are actually lost in the process.
The N&O also only focuses on this year’s “cuts” without adding any perspective whatsoever. But what are the longer term trends? They report the UNC system “loses” $414 million. But how much have taxpayers lost in financing the rapid expansion of government subsidies of a system the N&O itself has exposed as being bloated with duplicative bureaucrats? Not to mention all the reduntant study programs, and “research centers” and courses about time travel? The UNC system’s state subsidies exploded by two-thirds in just 8 years leading up to the current recession. You’ll never hear N&O editors acknowledge that. All we hear is about the “dire consequences” of this year’s budget that still winds up yielding an increase in state UNC subsidies of 42% in ten years.
More importantly, the N&O editors refuse to actually put any thought into their demagoguing. How is the state spending its money? Does subsidizing various state programs do more harm than good? For instance, do they ever stop to think about why college tuition continues to skyrocket even though universities continue to receive more and more government subsidies? Do government subsidies create poor incentives and a lack of fiscal restraint? No – no time to think about such trivial details when they need to craft their narrative that if only politicians could spend more of our money we would all be better off.
You greedy subjects should never question the wisdom of your rulers.