Taxing and Spending in New York

Bookending (in more than one sense of the term) California’s move to confiscate business’ tax cuts, New York’s Progressive-Democrat governor Andrew Cuomo wants to increase the taxes levied on that State’s citizens by $1 billion.  He’s claiming, in all seriousness,

You can’t possibly get anywhere near where you want to be on education and health care unless you raise revenues.  It’s just too big a deficit, and the choice of cutting education or cutting health care I don’t think is a place anyone wants to go to this year. So you have to raise revenue.

This is a false choice.  The largest cause of the State’s deficit, after all, is its spending level, not the size of its revenue.  Thus, one choice Cuomo is carefully eliding is this: the State’s government could cut spending across the board; there is, after all, more going on in New York than just education and health coverage costs.

Alternatively (which Cuomo also avoids mentioning), the State’s government could simply reallocate existing spending into education and health care.

Still another alternative unmentioned, the State’s government could fix its runaway pension funds for its public unions by using accurate projections of investment return rates and increasing the contributions union members and the unions themselves make to the funds.  Along with this, the State’s government could fix its health coverage program, replacing its version of Obamacare with market-based solutions, and freeing the citizens to buy the health plans that suit them rather than suiting Government.  Or not buy at all.

There’s simply no need for more revenue for the State’s government, no need to take even more money out of the pockets of the State’s citizens.

Unfortunately, neither the man nor his Party cronies in the legislature are emotionally capable of conceiving of actually cutting spending, or even of reallocating existing spending.

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