Tuesday, March 23, 2010

They Just Don't Get It

Some people just don't get it. I refer you to the latest comments by Adam Pagnucco as it relates to budget and taxation here in Maryland.

On a post in which in he is discussing the shifting of teacher pensions from a state to a county responsibility, Pagnucco drops the following:

If Montgomery wants to preserve the quality of its schools, it must put up a tough fight and negotiate only when it has maximum leverage. That point is not now, but next year, when the next Governor – whoever it is – will have to pass a tax and spending package to deal with Maryland’s long-term budget deficits. Such a package cannot pass without MoCo’s votes.
That point is not now, but next year, when the next Governor – whoever it is – will have to pass a tax and spending package to deal with Maryland’s long-term budget deficits.
There is only one problem with Pagnucco's broadbrushed statement.

It's not true.

What is the main reason why Pagnucco's statement bunk? It has nothing to do with the fact that Governor Ehrlich (who, by the way, will be Governor again next year) opposes the broad based tax and spending package that Pagnucco is suggesting. It has nothing to do with the fact that Governor O'Malley has presided over the least fiscally responsible administration in the history of the state, or the fact that O'Malley has engineered a series of immoral and irresponsiblie tax increases that has crippled our state financially.

It's the fact that, as many liberals continue to do, Pagnucco relies on the failed notion of taxes and spending being the solution to deal with our budget problems. People failed to realize that the time for Kenyes still passed.

What's more absurd is the fact that Pagnucco's premise continues to go with the theory that only through higher taxes and increased state spending. Hello? Isn't that the kind of policy on which Governor O'Malley's administration has be predicated upon? All O'Malley has done during his time as Governor is raise taxes, raise spending, and fail to take respoonsible steps to protect the fiscal health of this state.

Liberals like Pagnucco just don't get it. There is another way. Whomever is Governor in 2011 should take broad steps to reduce state spending and lower our taxes. Taxes at the very least should be returned to pre-O'Malley levels, in an effort to the middle and working class families that Maryland Democrats seem hellbent on destroying. Our spending plan should be rebuilt from the ground-up to ensure that only legitimate priorities and not Democratic special interests are receiving the bulk of our funding. And the Governor, whomever it is, should take broad steps to begin reducing the size of our state government. Maryland's government has for far too long been too big for its britches; we need a smaller, mor efficient government that only provides necessary services to the people of Maryland.

Maryland's middle and working class families, the ones who have been so hurt by Martin O'Malley's recklessness, knows that higher taxes are not the answer. If liberal opinion makers such as Pagnucco don't come to grips with the fact that there is an alternative to higher taxes and more spending....the people of Maryland will leave them in the dust.



Adam Pagnucco said...

This is hilarious. Let's remember the last time Ehrlich was elected. In his very first budget, Ehrlich proposed a property tax hike that violated his no-tax pledge. After he did so, he was praised for it by none other than Mike Busch while Republican legislators squawked.

And why did Ehrlich do it? His spokesman said, "It's clear to me that people do not understand the depth of the problem we're in, and it got worse this week." If he caved on taxes that quickly in an easy year like 2003, what do you think he will do in a tough year like 2011?

This first tax hike was followed by the flush tax and lots and lots of fees. In fact, according to the Post, Ehrlich's tax hikes early in his term surpassed his two Democratic predecessors. So it's clear whether Ehrlich or O'Malley is elected, taxes will go up. The only difference is that Ehrlich will call them "fees."

But let's get back to teacher pensions, which was the original point of my post. GOP House Minority Leader Tony O'Donnell says that if teacher pensions are handed off to the counties, it "almost guarantees the locals are going to raise your taxes." He's right, of course. If you guys were truly anti-tax, you would be fighting a teacher pension handoff just like I am and not defending a tax-happy former Governor simply because he has an "R" next to his name.

Greg Kline said...

Way to echo the Maryland Dem Party talking points on Ehrlich. You still miss Brian's point. There is an alternative, and I will let others debate whether a second Ehrlich administration will take it.

All you have to do is look at New Jersey for the very alternative blueprint that Brian is talking about. If the next MD Governor is like Chris Christie the problems will be solved without the massive tax increases you assume. Adopting such an apporoach is proven electorally in this climate.

DetectiveDick said...

Adam, the "R" word you are referring to must be REALITY. The reality is simple, Thornton Bridge to Excellence Plan, was the largest unfunded mandate in the history of The State of Maryland.

Each day millions of Marylanders have to make tough choices concerning money. Now you need to look at yourself and ask the question, Did I become a educator for the Profession or did you become a Educator for the pension?

How is that dedicated Slots Revenue working out for you guys?

Brian Griffiths said...

And I'm pretty sure that I wasn't taking a position on the pension issue as I lambasted the call for higher taxes. The fact of the matter is that, at the moment, it seems that it would be best for taxpayers to keep the pensions at the state level and reduce spending elsewhere.