Posts for admin

Carole's Campaign Cadre

The Beaumont Enterprise is reporting that outgoing-Comptroller Carole Keeten-Strayhorn has in her waning days in office hired on campaign staff and added employees. Cost to taxpayers? $40,000, for two months of work. For work that apparently wasn't needed while she was attempting to convince taxpayers and voters to move her into the governor's mansion. You can read the full story here. 

By |December 27, 2006
Merry Christmas: Hand over your money

Economist Stuart Greenfield opined in the subscription-based Quorum Report this week that while Texans are incredibly more generous individuals than others in the country (that part is right), our public policies keep the "state" from being as generous as the people (absolutely silliness). (Read his piece here; you may have to be a subscriber.) The state cannot, by definition, be generous or charitable; it can spend money, but it cannot be charitable. It is an anthropomorphism to suggest otherwise, for only people can be charitable.

By |December 22, 2006
Helping People

Does big government help people? The assumption made all too often is that the bigger the government, the more expansive the program, the more helpful it is. Indeed, we see that in the metrics used to justify continuing big government programs: how much money we spend.

At a recent event hosted by the Texas Public Policy Foundation, TFR chairman Tim Dunn made an incredibly persuasive speech in which he described the ways conventional wisdom falls completely flat. In reality, the best way to help people, is to reduce the drag government exerts on our economy.

By |December 15, 2006
Advocates for Big Government: Paid for by... your taxes!

Roddy Stinson, a columnist at the San Antonio Express-News, has hit the nail on the head with a piece in today's paper. He correctly describes the response of local governments to the idea of slowing down the amount of money they can grab as "Weeping, wailing and gnashing of teeth. Leading the sky-might-fall chorus is the well-heeled, city-government-is-king Texas Municipal League."

By |December 12, 2006
Sen. Carona would rather do the wrong thing... on taxes?

Sen. CaronaState Senator John Carona (R-Dallas) is quoted by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram as saying that he'd rather "something wrong than do nothing." The sad thing is that in this case, the "wrong thing" he'd rather do is raise local taxes to pay for more wasteful mass transit spending, than "do nothing" which apparently includes making local governments squeeze more effiency out of their spending programs.

By |December 12, 2006
Killing the Business Tax...

 When Texas lawmakers instituted the “gross margins” business tax, it is a safe bet they didn’t expect trail-lawyer-extraordinaire Mark Lanier to sue them over it. But that’s exactly what he’s planning on doing, according to today’s Houston Chronicle. 

By |December 11, 2006