Liberals and the end of the Free Ride


States all over the union are being downgraded, they’re in record deficits, they’re bankrupt, and many of them are on the brink of disaster. There’s no more money. In the 1992 election and during the Clinton presidency, the Clintons and Democrats rang the bell with the cry: “The free ride was over.” Constantly, the Clintons said that the free ride and the free lunch was over for the rich.
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Technically, there was no free ride in the administrations prior to the Clinton administration. Technically, the rich were still paying taxes. Their tax rates were cut in the previous administrations, but they were still paying taxes. Technically, the revenue received by the federal government actually went up in the administrations that preceded the Clinton administration. The rich paid fewer taxes, but these lowered taxes increased activity. These Lowered taxes increased prosperity, and that increased activity in the U.S., increased tax receipts and revenue to the federal government. Lowered taxes also increased investment, because people had more capital, and capital gains taxes were lower, which encouraged many to make moves in the market. Moves in the market means taxes means more tax receipts means more revenue for the federal government. There was no free lunch or free ride, until the Democrats took over the spending reigns and people started sucking on the free teat.
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That free ride is slowly but surely pulling into the depot, and liberal legislators do not know what to do. They see their coffers emptying, they see people moving out of their states, and they see governors like the Democrat in New York saying we are now required to be more responsible with our spending habits. As former British Prime Minister Margaret once said: “Socialism is great, until you run out of other people’s money.” Liberal legislators have been elected and re-elected for generations with the idea that they would provide their constituents with free money, a free ride, and a free lunch. For the past few years, they have extended unemployment, increased welfare, and they have continued to pour money into the teacher’s union, drug and alcohol programs, and on and on.
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Some would say that we’ve been incrementally heading to this day since LBJ signed the Great Society legislation in 1965. Others would say that it’s a recent phenomenon that began in the Bush administration when the Democrats took over the spending reigns in that Congressional session and Bush signed it all away so that the liberal Congressman in that session would continue to fund his war in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Republicans were also responsible in the Bush administration for defense spending combined with unprecedented (for Republicans anyway) spending on entitlements.
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Regardless of when it started, it is now ending. As evidenced by New York Democrat Governor David Patterson threatening to shut down the NY government if the liberal legislators do not agree to the cuts in the 2010 budget.
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Governor Patterson has agreed to $350 million in cuts in an emergency bill, but Republicans wants an additional $750 million in cuts on this bill. In this particular case, the Republicans understand that they don’t have other people’s money to spend anymore, not to the degree they did two years ago. The free ride is coming into the depot if not for good then at least until people can recover from the recent economic blows delivered by state and federal legislators. Personally, I don’t think liberal legislators–be they state or fedeal–will ever loosen the reigns on the economy, because it goes against their theoretical beliefs to do so. If I’m wrong, the people may recover, and the liberals can go on spending the way they have for generations.
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As it stands right now, liberal legislators will not be able to sin tax their way out of this, they have to cut spending. They can’t raise state income or sales taxes, people are moving, you have to cut spending. You can’t raise taxes on investment and hope that people will continue to invest regardless. People are pulling their money out of markets and real estate and state bonds now. You can’t turn to the people and say things like Clinton did: “I’ve tried as hard as I could, but I couldn’t find a way to decrease taxes on the middle class.” That worked once, but as with any bluff it’s more and more difficult to pull it off on successive occasions. People are starting to wise up. They’re starting to see that this isn’t all their fault, and they shouldn’t be required to take all the pain for the current state of affairs.
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As for the governor of New York’s and the Republican legislator’s proposed spending cuts, a liberal state legislator is saying: “I am not voting for any more cuts. I understand that it is painful.” It’s not painful Ruben Diaz Jr., it’s stupid, it’s naïve, and it’s ignorant. You don’t have the money to play Santa Claus anymore Senator. There’s no more free lunch.
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Another liberal NY state Senator named Pedro Espada is saying: “I would vote no if such a massive cut were included because the state needs a fiscal plan.”
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The “state needs a fiscal plan”? This is a fiscal plan. This may be the only fiscal plan that prevents you from becoming California or Oregon. Governor Patterson called both men, “Thugs.” Dictionary.com defines the word thug as a cruel or vicious ruffian, a robber, cheat, swindler, and might I add irrational uncompromising fool.
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You have to feel for these liberals though. I know, I know, it’s their fault to a degree, and if it were up to them they would continue to take money from the Peter to pay Paul until the end of time. But you do have to feel sorry for them, as they will not have anything to run on in the next election. They can tell their constituents that they will continue to give them a free lunch and a free ride, but people are eventually going to wise up and say, ‘you don’t have any more money. How are you going to support my habits, my kids, and my current lifestyle?’ They will be lost at that point. They’re politicians. They’ll come up with something, but will people believe them anymore?

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