Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

BUDGET: Welcome to the new normal

Letter by Matthew Philichi, Gig Harbor on Nov. 29, 2011 at 5:12 pm with 87 Comments »
November 30, 2011 8:44 am

Gov. Chris Gregoire and our Legislature have now begun a special session to deal with their projected $2 billion deficit. They keep being wrong because they don’t get it.

Our nation’s economy grew at more than 4 percent for many years. It grew faster than developed countries generally do. It was done with leverage and more leverage. We were capitalism on steroids.

Those days are now over. We will now see a 1 or 2 percent growth rate if we are lucky. This is “the new normal.” We don’t need a temporary sales tax increase. We need a budget that is real and that can be paid for with existing revenues from a slower-growing economy.

It will mean that schools need to be consolidated and teachers need to be laid off. It means that other government workers and programs need to be downsized. We simply cannot afford the size of government that Gregoire has given us.

It was fun for Gregoire to expand government and give everyone raises in the good times. Now is the hard part. Now is the time when she needs to help Washington to get real again.

Unfortunately, to do it right, she will have to be prepared for Olympia to look like Madison, Wis., did last summer. She must either do what she was paid to do or let a new leader handle it.

This pain will happen. It is now time for our government to reflect the growth rate of “the new normal.”

Leave a comment Comments → 87
  1. Fibonacci says:

    Teachers need to be laid off. The number of teachers needed depends on the number of kids. The governor has no control over that.
    By the way, comparing us to Madison Wis–notice that there is a recall pending on that governor?

  2. olympicmtn says:

    Matt you are correct. This will be even more the NEW normal when the Euro slides. Get real Olympia Tacoma no more $30,000 refinishing conference room tables or swivel back mesh chairs.

  3. tree_guy says:

    Thanks Matthew, another splendid letter to the editor. I would add that it’s time, in my opinion, to stop providing premium pay to government workers. Wage rates should be determined in the market place and not by legislators who take contributions from the workers whose wages are being “negotiated.” The current arrangement is unholy and provides no value to the beleagured taxpayers.

  4. cclngthr says:

    Agree with Matt.

    I also think (particularly with schools) accountability must be built into the budget. Certain things must happen before funding is sent to each department.

  5. Spoken like a person who sends his kids to private schools and doesn’t care about others.

  6. sandblower says:

    Matt, you and your friends are wrong, wrong, wrong. We can afford to have decent high performing schools. We can afford to provide health care for all and we can afford the sales tax increase. We can afford an even higher rate of taxation for those whose incomes dwarf the rest of the population. It is the cost of having a civil society where children and adults do not go to bed hungry.
    Your extreme right wing ideas are brutal and unnecessary. I pray for your enlightenment.

  7. Those days are now over. We will now see a 1 or 2 percent growth rate if we are lucky. This is “the new normal.”

    I remember the old days when “conservatives” berated folks who were pointing out that our spendthrift ways were unsustainable as being “pessimists”. And they said that their belief that an expectation that stocks would forever show 20% annual increases in profit margins was realistic…..

  8. philichi says:

    In reality the amount of children in the classroom will be determined by the amount of money that Washington can afford. If we need to have 30 kids per class, that will be determined by the budget not some union contract.

    Yes, they can recall the governor of Wisconsin. That won’t change reality. Growth rates will come down so must government spending.
    They may find a union friendly lady to take over like we have here. It will still mean budget cuts, lay offs, protests and pepper spray.

    We are now Greece. Welcome to the New Normal.

  9. I wonder why Matthew isn’t focused on the huge gains of today’s market

  10. As of this moment, the DOW is up over 400 points. Pretty tough to keep the doom and gloom message going with a 400 point gain, huh, Matt?

  11. “Today, Bellarmine enrolls approximately 1,000 students. They travel from as far away as Thurston, Kitsap and King counties. The school sits on 42 acres and has grown from one building to many, including a state-of-the-art library and computer facility.”

    Sound nice?

  12. aislander says:

    Gee…what about the dichotomy between Wall Street and “Main Street” we have been hearing so much about from the left? And how does a one-day rise in the Dow result in more revenue for the state–which is the subject of this thread?

  13. aislander says:

    I’m guessing (with some cause) that those comments opposing REAL cuts come from employees of government, Democrat operatives (whose party depends heavily on contributions from public-employee unions), and benighted students who are cynically being manipulated by their “teachers…”

  14. philichi says:

    I am not suggesting that we shouldn’t do all of those noble things. However, we will be forced to pay far less for all of them.

    Currently our government simply over pays a bloated workforce. A portion of the money goes to union dues which simply goes to Democrats to keep the same charade going. That is how it has always worked. Like the housing market, this was doomed to fail.

    As budgets contract, so will dues paying union workers. Sooner or later they won’t be able to afford to trick people any more. Like the housing market, the scam is about to fall apart.

  15. blakeshouse says:

    To “sandblower” and “RW98512″ Both of you are doing your best to try and replace Kardy and are at best doing a halfassed job. Also something to remember before you spew your vile crap to the rest of us…. It is better to keep your mouth shut and have everyone presume you an idiot than it is to open your mouth and remove any and ALL doubt

  16. aislander says:

    You know, blakehouse, it isn’t the quality of argumentation (there isn’t any) of the lefties on this panel that puts one off, it is the breathtaking degree of condescension and patronizing–with absolutely NO justification!–that is infuriating.

    I have been posting on this forum for a while now, and in that time I have encountered only–at most–one or two lefties I might want to have a beer with. And I’ve encountered a LOT of lefties (although less than the sum of their screen names, I’m certain)…

  17. philichi says:

    RW98512 I have been paying property taxes for years. I have yet to send a child to the public schools. Where do I go for my refund?

    I think that you and I both know that our public schools have a lot of problems. However, none of them happen to be lack of money. Bill Gates agrees with me.

    What is really funny is that everyone knows it. If we made the head coach of an NFL football team go through the hoops that a principal must go through to fire a bad teacher, the team would never win a game. The reason that this goes on in your schools is that parents seem not to care.

    Believe me, you don’t want me our my kids at your school. I would never put up with the crap that you and your union dish out.

  18. philichi – thanks for making my point. I sent a child to private schools from 1-12 and didn’t complain about public school funding. In fact I went out of my way to support public schools. I’m not so arrogant to know that some couldn’t afford what I could so I lend a hand by paying my taxes and shutting up about it.

    You have a resentment with anyone that doesn’t see things from your narrow perspective of “I, me, mine”.

    If Bill Gates agrees with you, why has his foundation put money into public schools? http://www.publicschoolreview.com/articles/141 more about Gates and public schools

    If you really want a refund, I can probably afford it myself. Calculate your percentage of school funding from your property taxes and let me know, but please do it in a public forum so that all can see what you are trying to retrieve.

  19. “breathtaking degree of condescension and patronizing”

    Consider the source and have a laugh with me.

  20. spotted1 says:

    RW – Bellarmine is a private school. You do know that right? They are not funded by public money.

  21. “And how does a one-day rise in the Dow result in more revenue for the state–which is the subject of this thread?”

    As everyone knows, so goes the DOW, so goes the economic security of the United States.

    Continuing – so goes the security of spending in the State of Washington, so goes the state revenue which is primarity sales tax.

    At the risk of sounding “condescending” – I thought EVERYONE knew the above.

  22. spotted1 – as a parent of a proud alumni…….yep. Go Lions!

    My point in posting that is that Bellarmine provides a quality education. We taxpayers can either live with a lessor education for the next generations or step up to the plate and realize that quality isn’t free.

  23. philichi – I should add to my challenge that you need to quit taking money from those that use public education and other taxpayer paid services, if you truly want to rid yourself and your family of said “unions”.

  24. itwasntmethistime says:

    Matt, your last sentence hit the nail right on the head for me. My kid goes to a small private school mostly for the Christian immersion, but also partly because I like that the school has standards that students and parents must adhere to. If we used our local public school it wouldn’t be a week before I was banging on someone’s door telling them to turn their darn TV off and do their job as a parent because their kid is holding up the rest of the class.

    There is nothing the public schools can do with any amount of money that will override the attitude a child learns from his parents.

  25. To oppose all the grousing about Washington State.


    Take a look at the worst run states and you’ll find a common thread at the office of governor. Most are Republicans.

  26. philichi says:

    RW98512, I read the article. The Bill Gates article was written in 2009. We have had 2 more years of failure since it was written. The other one shows California and Illinois as the states in worst shape. Both are run by Democrats and their public sector union buddies.

    The rest of the sad story is this. One of the biggest expenses in a state budget is the interest that it must pay on its bonds. That is determined by ratings. Soon, states will begin to get downgraded. We are probably near. The budgets will be looked at. If states don’t make the cuts like Wisconsin and Indiana had to do, they will be forced pay more in interest expences. Either way that will take money from the public sector unions.

    By the way. I would be proud to pay taxes for a competitive, good, public school system. I am not the least bit proud of what we have built. Are you? It is set up as a jobs program. Learning is not a priority, money and unions are. Why should I feel compelled to pay for that? I feel guilty to keep it going.

  27. If we made the head coach of an NFL football team go through the hoops that a principal must go through to fire a bad teacher, the team would never win a game.

    If we paid teachers at the same rates we paid coaches and paid them in full for their contracts in order to not have use of their services like we do coaches, I’m thinking that the teachers union wouldn’t complain too loudly to reductions in tenure protections…

  28. Fibonacci says:

    I suspect you only know what your right wing nut jobs tell you about schools and how the work. When was the last time you spent any time in one? As an adult that has WORKED in both public AND private schools, and as a parent that has had kids attend BOTH I would guess that I understand them better than you. The advantage that private schools have is that they control who there students are. The public schools have to take everyone. The curriculum, teachers, materials, etc are not better in a privagte school.

    As for your union hating, I have no idea how you righties think that the unions “run” the schools. They bargain WORKING CONTITIONS for the employees, nothing else.

  29. LarryFine says:

    It’s the wallpaper thing…

  30. LarryFine says:

    Well, Obama did promise to “fundamentally change America”…

  31. cclngthr says:

    Currently, there accountability is not built into pay schedules. I think there has to be accountability to be in budgets. If schools cannot perform, why should they receive the same amount of funding?

  32. itwasntmethistime says:

    Fib — You’re right — the curriculum, teachers, and materials are not better at private school. In fact, the materials are usually on the shabby side and the teachers are paid less than their public school counterparts. Why is private school better? Because your kid is surrounded by other kids whose parents value education.

    Again, there is no amount of money that will change the fact that teachers cannot override the influence a parent has on a child. We could strip the education budget down to bare bones and you will still have kids who flourish and kids who flounder, and that will be based on what is going on in the home.

  33. itwasntmethistime says:

    cc — How can you hold a teacher accountable for what goes on in her students’ homes at night? The best teacher on the planet can master the most enriching, stimulating methods for teaching a kid to read, and still, if the kids in her class don’t read for at least a half hour at home every night they will not read as well as the kids with the worst teacher on the planet who do read at night. Academics, like every other skill, are improved with practice.

  34. “When was the last time you spent any time in one?”

    His claim is that he has never used their services.

    That’s like saying you hate the taste of beans if you’ve never tasted them.

  35. Fibonacci says:

    As usual, it is easy to throw the accountability thing out there. What no one has yet to be able to do is to determine how this will work. You always got back to the testing thing. How are your autoshop kids tested? Is there a standardized test? How do you compare to the rest of the autoshop teachers in your school—-oh wait you are the only one. How do you compute accountablity for PE, Foreign Language, Social Studies, Shop, Home and Family Life, Art, and every other class that is not faced with standardized tests? The answer, you can’t. Even within areas such as math that do have standardized tests: Compare the AP Calculus teachers test results on standardized tests to the Remdial 9th grade teachers class results. Hmmmmm

  36. cclngthr says:

    Using a standards based criteria will measure students knowledge against that standard. If they don’t perform, they need to be held back (particularly with gen ed), and the teacher be required to figure out if it is the student, or teachers ability is in question. Usually it is both. Having an outside group evaluate teachers and students may be what is needed.

    Practice should come from the school, where the teacher SUPERVISES the students doing the work. Homework is not intended as a practice session, but one that the student already has mastered the concept.

  37. philichi says:

    RW98512 I have never used crack either. It,like public school unions, Has had some bad results on the children. I don’t plan to use either.

  38. taxedenoughintacoma says:

    The next time you ask “what to cut”?

    How about we SLASH State Employee BLOATED Department PAYROLLS???

    Total Comp. Paid
    University of Washington
    $1,958,215,454 — Plus Student Paid Tuition!
    Dept of Social and Health Services
    Department of Transportation
    Department of Corrections
    Washington State University
    Washington State Patrol
    Department of Labor and Industries
    Employment Security Department
    Western Washington University
    Department of Ecology
    Department of Health
    Department of Fish and Wildlife
    Seattle Community Colleges – Dist 6

    How about we SLASH State Employee BLOATED WAGES???

    Highest paid WA State Employees, statewide
    Person 2010 Total Compensation*

    Stephen A Sarkisian
    Head Football Coach, University of Washington
    Lorenzo Romar
    Head Basketball Coach, University of Washington
    Ken Bone
    Head Basketball Coach, Washington State University
    Nicholas Holt V
    Assistant Football Coach, University of Washington
    Elson Floyd
    President, Washington State University
    Paul L Wulff
    Head Football Coach, Washington State University
    David Scott Woodward
    Associate Vice President, University of Washington
    Laligam N Sekhar
    Professor Without Tenure, University of Washington
    Jorge Dionisio Reyes
    Professor Without Tenure, University of Washington
    Donald W Miller
    Professor Without Tenure, University of Washington

  39. aislander says:

    So…IS the new budget smaller than the old one?

    WHAT cuts?

  40. itwasntmethistime says:

    cc — Homework is too intended to be a practice session. And even if it isn’t assigned by the teacher, there will still be some kids who will practice what they learned at school just because they want to, and they will gain additional proficiency over their peers from the extra practice. You can’t attribute the difference in skill level because of practice at home to the teacher.

    To put this in terms you can understand, a few of your auto shop students might have an engine they tinker with in their garage with Dad at night. Let’s assume every one of your students has 100% understanding of what you’ve taught in auto shop class. The kid who tinkers around with the engine at night is still going to be faster and more proficient at replacing parts. That’s not because you’re a superstar teacher, it’s because the kid likes hanging out with his Dad.

  41. philichi – I guess we can all pull an analogy out of our back pockets.

    “Investor representatives rip people off – known fact. Thus all investors are crooks.”

    How’s that one working?

    If you just want to smear a certain segment of the workforce, the game can be played in many directions.

  42. taxedeoughintacoma – I’m guessing you don’t know the term “market value”

  43. Since the head football coach of UW is responsible for a program that grosses about $4,000,000 per home game (x6) plus media revenue, plus promotional revenue, et al.

    I’d prefer that we pay market value for that job and not try to go on the cheap.

  44. cclngthr says:

    Homework is not intended to be a practice session before the kid has completely mastered the concept; however most teachers treat homework as it should be a practice session before the kid masters the concept. Many parents tell me that they have to “reteach” the concept the homework lesson is covering because the kid has not had enough time with the teacher and the lesson practice in school before the teacher handed out the homework.

    I treat homework as part of an extension to the mastery process. I make sure the kid has mastered the concept while IN school so they don’t make mistakes while doing the homework. Homework should only take maybe 20 minutes to complete per course; if that.

    If a kid is tinkering on an engine, while in class, what they learn in class (as a lab) is not exactly what they may be doing at home. That engine at home is likely needing different things and not within what has been already covered in class, but it is a way to test the concepts mastered in school. That student may try to test his knowledge on engine mechanicals at home in the garage, however if he/she is not knowledgeable on the specific problem with the engine at home, that student may end up making mistakes more if they try something that has not been covered. Engine parts replacement would not increase timewise because each engine has different tolerances and specifications where parts needing replaced take a different proceedure. On some engines, replacing a head takes a different proceedure than other heads. On some Mitsubishi engines, the head bolts are torque to yield and the torque specs require a proceedure that requires a 1/2 turn where other engines take a 50 ft lb reading. Caddy Northstar engines also require a different proceedure to remove parts. On a STS, you have to remove the radiator to get to the alternator, and those alternators are water cooled. Bleeding the cooling systems also varies on cars.

  45. took14theteam says:

    Did NixdiX get banned too?

  46. BigSwingingRichard says:

    Another nice letter Matt, thanks for representing the thinking class once again.

  47. took14theteam says:

    I will say that “Kardnos” and I, along with about 14 other bloggers have had a tremendous laugh at your expense.

    Are there now 14 other bloggers posting as RW98512?

    There is a “Hot line” for people like you LPH.

    Say Hi to your cheerleader Mucky…..

    If fraudoire didn’t spend like a kid in a candy store after she stole the election, we probably wouldn’t be in this situation now.

  48. Sandblower – it is a sad judgment that we as a nation are no longer interested in the long term good of the majority but focus on the short term gain of the few.

    RW – and is it not delicious that the gains were sparked by news that many central banks taking steps to increase loans by loosen credit.

    Blakehouse – you and Aislander should take your own advice.

    Philichi – I’ve been paying for police and fire protection for years and have never needed them. Does that mean I should stop paying?

  49. aislander says:

    xring: I don’t recall offering any advice. I just observed that the large majority of lefties I have encountered are Massengills…

  50. LarryFine says:

    took14theteam says:
    Nov. 30, 2011 at 6:49 pm Did NixdiX get banned too?

    … no, he just changes monikers as fast as RW makes multiple posts.

  51. itwasntmethistime says:

    xring — Maybe you have benefitted directly from the police without even knowing it. What if a violent killer they snagged one day had planned to ambush your house the next day. They might have saved your life and you didn’t even know it!

  52. Vox_clamantis_in_deserto says:

    Spoken like a person who sends his kids to private schools and doesn’t care about others.

    I wonder why Matthew isn’t focused on the huge gains of today’s market

    “Today, Bellarmine enrolls approximately 1,000 students. They travel from as far away as Thurston, Kitsap and King counties. The school sits on 42 acres and has grown from one building to many, including a state-of-the-art library and computer facility.”
    Sound nice?

    Geez, Kardy, what is this, cyber stalking? What next, you camp on Matt’s lawn – wait for a chance to snatch his daughters? (Good luck with that, Maryanne would wipe the floor with you!)

    So you know how to use google. Is this some kind of threat?

  53. Vox_clamantis_in_deserto says:

    To oppose all the grousing about Washington State.


    Take a look at the worst run states and you’ll find a common thread at the office of governor. Most are Republicans.

    And I thought mucky’s post of yesterday was the stupidest post ever. This one tops it – and in fewer than 24 hours no less.

    Uhmm, Kardy, you do realize the data was collected in 2010, when only 7 of the bottom 15 had Republican Governors. And how convenient of you to leave out the top 15 , where 10 have Republican Governors, including 8 of the top 10.

    Two worst states? California (#50) and Illinois (49) – both D’s. Who woulda’ known?

  54. harleyrider1 says:

    Good letter Matthew.

  55. commoncents says:

    Tie the teachers pay to the performance of the students? I can hear it now as they bid for my kids services…instead of me buying the teacher a small gift for xmas and the end of the year I will demand that they buy me one. Otherwise my kid will not be taking any end of year assessments. Woooo hoooo….

  56. beerBoy says:

    I remember when parents would tie their childrens’ “pay” (allowances) to performance in school. Now it is the other way around – the only person who is expected to be accountable is the teacher, not the person actually responsible for learning.

  57. aislander says:

    Really, beerBoy? Really? I’m not paying the kids’ allowances, but I AM paying the teachers’ salaries. Who the hell else CAN I hold responsible?

  58. commoncents says:

    aislander – so you have no problems with teachers recruiting students? And low man on totem pole receives all of the difficult kids and thus lower compensation because he/she doesn’t have breakfast with the Principal every Friday morning.

  59. aislander says:

    I am in favor of vouchers. Does that answer your question, cc?

  60. RW98512 says:

    I’d love to see Vox prove that there has been a drastic change since 2010 in any of those states.

    As to California – two words – “proposition 13″. It worked beautifully didn’t it? Oh and wasn’t the governor a republican prior to January 2011?

  61. RW98512 says:

    Vox – Matthew disclosed his profession in the past, not to mention that part of his letter was about the “terrible state of the economy”. One would think that the upswing of the market from, oh let’s say 9/2008 would encourage Matthew and others that think hell is a handbag away.

    My son went to Bellarmine, thus my example. Try reading my followup comment before you go connecting dots to the letter writer.

    Can you make a mountain out of another mole mound?

    Maybe you should refrain from disclosing personal information about people then accusing others of the same.

    Meanwhile, you appear to have said entirely too much about the letter writer and his family.

    Try sticking to the thread subject to avoid blabbing personal information about people.

  62. commoncents says:

    I can understand your desire for a voucher system but that won’t fix the public school system. All it will do is allow others to leave the system. There is competition now and the system is flawed – more competition won’t change that.

    The topic at hand was individual accountability of the teacher vs the parents and how a parent or collection of parents can positively/negatively impact a teachers compensation level for whatever reasons they desire. How is that holding anyone accountable?

  63. philichi says:

    RW98512We had always known that the welfare state would finally implode on itself. It was simply a matter of time. We are seeing it in Greece, Italy, Spain and yes California. The state of California and all of these countries are responsible for so much in retirement benefits that they couldn’t tax enough to make them work. If they were private plans, their administrators would have been jailed.
    All it takes is a pencil, a calculator, and an understanding of demographics.

    I was wrong on the outcome. I thought that the left would simply apologize for what they had done and help to unwind every thing from Medicare to Social Security. I thought that they would help to introduce the world to alternatives that could work for the long term. I actually thought that Pres. Obama would be the perfect guy to do this. I was wrong. They, like you, are looking for someone to blame. It is millionaires and billionaires. It is Wall Street. It is proposition 13. It is everything but faulty designs of programs that were designed to fail.

    Well, welcome to “the new normal” my friend. These programs will fail slower in a fast growing economy. In a 1% to 2% economy, reality simply is happening faster. I hope that you aren’t counting on any of these pension plans, or social security for your retirement.

  64. aislander says:

    Being confronted by reality has no effect on committed leftists, philichi. I’m not certain if the animus is hatred fueled by envy or a type of religious faith and fervor, but example after example of the failure of collective “solutions” are ignored or rationalized.

    A roll of victims approaching 100 million people? The wrong people were trying to impose a good system.

    Breathtaking amounts of money spent trying to stimulate the economy with no positive effect? We haven’t spent enough.

    Social programs bankrupting the world? Tax the rich even more, although simple arithmetic shows the rich don’t have nearly enough money to make a dent in all the deficit, debt, and unfunded liabilities.

    I just hope that enough people are left who know how to add and subtract to turn this around…

  65. commoncents says:

    Was it the design of the programs that caused them to fail or the failure of those who were in charge of administering those programs to conservatively follow the directions of the experts? They are NOT one and the same.

    aislander – I would agree that taxing the rich even more isn’t the way to go. But austerity plans alone don’t work either. It must be a combination of increased taxation and substantial decrease in the size and spending of government. However, we should be aware that such a decrease will negatively impact the private sector as a lot of companies are dependent upon defense spending.

  66. Speaking of “reality”, how can a conservative say “California” and pretend like Prop 13 never happened?

    Pensions? They were negotiated in lieu of wages at the time. Now conservatives want to welch on their side of the bargain.

  67. philichi says:

    RW98512 Prop 13 happened. However, so did constant rises in income taxes and sales taxes in California. If it makes you feel better, you may blame this on Prop 13. Again, just another blame. Prop 13 was passed in the 80s. California has had ample time to make adjustments to their obligations so has Greece, Italy, and Washington. However, we are now back to the same problem RW98512.
    What does the left do now? All of their schemes are bankrupt or will be. Do they begin to move out of them? Or, do they double down? I hoped for the former. The great lefty Third Reich just started taking businesses and property away from the rich. What will the left do this time?

  68. LarryFine says:

    Heck… if correlation equaled causation, it would reason that the way illegal aliens are taken care of in California, is why California is in such dire straits.

  69. aislander says:

    commcents: We’re not going to get anywhere on the revenue side until we acknowledge the difference between tax rates and tax receipts, and that there isn’t enough wealth in existence to fill the hole the world has dug for itself. We need to create more wealth and we need to buy ourselves the necessary time to avoid collapse. I just don’t know what the currency to buy that time might be.

    I had an epiphany today as to what the endgame could be, and, based on the counterproductive methods being employed by our government and others, it isn’t to spur a spate of burgeoning growth.

    I have to mull over my realization before I write about it to ascertain that it isn’t a manifestation of paranoia, and that I haven’t fallen into the conspiracy-theory trap. I desperately hope I’m wrong…

  70. Vox_clamantis_in_deserto says:

    I’d love to see Vox prove that there has been a drastic change since 2010 in any of those states.

    This is your counter? First show me where “there has been a drastic change″ for the better “since 2010 in any″ state. Then kindly explain your theory of the mess otherwise known as Illinios. Bush’s fault?

    Incidentally, the combined debt of CA and IL is more than double the combined debt of the remaining 12 states on your list. And Ilinois’ debt exceeds California’s.

    As to California… wasn’t the governor a republican prior to January 2011?

    No. But he played one in a movie… once.

  71. Getting back to public vs. private school costs/funding. I believe there is a major point many of you geniuses have missed and that is Special Education students. Public schools are required by law to accommodate Special Education students with free and appropriate education. For many Special Ed students this can run into tens of thousands or even a hundred thousand dollars. Private schools are not required to serve Special Ed students, in fact many private schools will not let a student with any special needs even enroll. Many private schools that do enroll a student with any special need will send the student to a public school part time for help with a particular Special Ed need.

  72. RW98512 says:

    “The great lefty Third Reich”

    Oh geeeeeeeeeeeez….here we go.

  73. RW98512 says:

    Interesting how Vox can focus on one state, Illinois, and ignore Alabama, Mississippi, West Virginia, South Carolina, Florida, Louisiana, Kentucky, Arizona – all states with a history of conservative politics.

    As to Illinois – the answer was in the story – “The state has been on credit watch since 2008 because of budget shortfalls and legal challenges against then-governor Rod Blagojevich.”

    Crooks don’t help. Luckily they get caught.

  74. RW98512 says:

    “illegal aliens are taken care of in California”

    In debate this is called a baseless assertion, strawman or red herring, take your pick, based on intent.

  75. aislander says:

    Marc Rich didn’t…get caught.

  76. aislander says:

    Studies show that illegal immigration costs California anywhere from $8 to $21 billion annually. The controversial Perryman report is the outlier…

  77. aislander says:

    Louisiana and West Virginia are longtime Democrat strongholds, which have only recently shown signs of sanity. Arizona was governed by Big Sis (now chief of Homeland Security)…

  78. aislander says:

    Only lefty historians, embarrassed by their ideological family tree’s including fascism and Nazism, continue to deny the relationship to other forms of socialism…

    The preceding posts are general in nature, and not addressed to any specific member…

  79. LarryFine says:

    Yeah… $9,ooo,ooo,ooo of cost incurred in California due to illegal immigration is a big red herring…

  80. took14theteam says:

    “Oh geeeeeeeeeeeez….here we go.”

    And the restraints are coming off…

    Classic Kard.


  81. beerBoy says:

    Only lefty historians, embarrassed by their ideological family tree’s including fascism and Nazism, continue to deny the relationship to other forms of socialism…

    You keep making statements like this. You are becoming harder to take seriously.

  82. aislander says:

    Oh, and lefties who are validated by lefty historians…

  83. beerBoy says:

    aislander – you are a classic example of one who is convinced by the logic of the circular logic he employs. You come to facts with a conclusion in mind and ignore the (vast majority of) facts that contradict your conclusion and then claim that the facts are the reason you arrived at your “(pre)clusion”

  84. LarryFine says:

    beerBoy says:
    December 16, 2010 at 8:41 am
    People who employ pop psychology to put down “the other side” seem to be unaware of their own projection.
    Who does that?


  85. aislander says:

    PLEASE, beerBoy, PROVIDE the specific facts that refute the facts I have presented (such as…oh, I don’t know…social policy in Fascist Italy). So far, you have provided only the opinions of…er…lefty historians–and made attempts to marginalize (but only when far removed from the LAST factual argument I presented).

  86. beerBoy says:

    How about you giving specific facts to back up this statement:

    Only lefty historians, embarrassed by their ideological family tree’s including fascism and Nazism, continue to deny the relationship to other forms of socialism…

  87. aislander says:

    That is a statement of opinion, but I will clean it up. ALL the historians I have encountered who aver that fascism is a right-wing phenomenon (in the American sense of right wing–that is: classically liberal) are flaming lefties. Fair historians place fascism on the right wing of the left…

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