Saturday, October 22, 2005

Government needs

And yes, I've seen the Tennessean editorial against the latest efforts of Tennessee Tax Revolt to require Nashville government to check with it's citizens before upping our taxes. I look around and see a representative system that needs a bit of a "slap", as the Tennessean calls it. It's my opinion that the editor falls right into the same pit as some of our representatives when they write:

Elected officials who make difficult decisions on taxes have to weigh the responsibility of managing revenues. When revenues don't meet the government's needs, those officials face decisions, including raising taxes or cutting services.

They have a responsibiliy to manage expenses and revenues. When the Tennessean only mentions the income and not the outflow they overlook at least half of the issue.

Further the government has absolutely no 'needs' except self-preservation. The citizens of the city do have needs, yes. And there is no way that the city can meet all the needs of the citizens. So we have to debate about which needs are handled by the city and which are handled by the citizens themselves and/or various charities. Every time the city decides that they need more of my money I have to decide how long my children can wear those same shoes or where I can get cheaper milk. What I need is a government that understands its limitations and has the backbone to say "This far and no further" to well-meaning advocates begging for more.

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