It’s almost impossible to read the national news without seeing the economic calamity befalling our sister states. They just cannot seem to get it right.

Generally speaking, they won’t. They have allowed themselves to be governed by bad ideas.

From California’s budget problems to Michigan’s jobless rates, we find one constant: where liberal policies dominate, the problems of the current economic downturn are magnified. The more entrenched the left is in political leadership, the deeper the problems, the more bleak the outlook, the greater the misery.

We cannot let it happen in Texas.

So far the Lone State has weathered the economic crisis better than the others — but we cannot assume that will last. We have to take action to make it so. The right action.

The policies of the left — higher taxes, more regulations, bigger government — always fail, and fail miserably. But there are a great many in Texas who want us to follow the downward path trod by California and so many others, hiking taxes, increasing spending, expanding welfare and growing government.

As Winston Churchill said: “I contend that for a nation to try to tax itself into prosperity is like a man standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle.”

While economic liberty does not guarantee prosperity, but it is the necessary ingredient.

It all starts with elections. We can only ensure a vibrant future by both defeating liberals and electing strong, commonsense conservatives.

The stakes are high. If we’re going to win the contests of March and November 2010, we have to be preparing today. But we can’t wait until then, we have to start today.

Make a contribution today to the Empower Texans PAC. Every dollar is used for direct political action; no salaries, no overhead. (You can even arrange to make a recurring contribution each month!)

The right public policies — the right attitudes about the role of government, levels of taxation — only happen when we elect right-thinking men and women to office. That’s our responsibility to ourselves and the future.

Together, we can empower Texans by keeping Texas strong!

Michael Quinn Sullivan

Michael Quinn Sullivan is the publisher of Texas Scorecard. He is a native Texan, a graduate of Texas A&M, and an Eagle Scout. Previously, he has worked as a newspaper reporter, magazine contributor, Capitol Hill staffer, and think tank vice president. Michael and his wife have three adult children, a son-in-law, and a dog. Michael is the author of three books, including "Reflections on Life and Liberty."