Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Ohioans drinking their way to prosperity?

THERE ARE moments when I'm convinced that Gov. Kasich is running the state for his own amusement. His repeated boasts that he's personally changing Ohio's impoverished landscape, no matter how harshly many people will have to suffer, sounds terribly like the puffed up neighborhood bully who is out to prove to himself that he alone commands the streets.

Look, we heard his threats the first time! Still, he has yet to show us anything other than he is a reckless swashbuckler on the loose. He's not the sort of person you would want to negotiate a deal with the Queen of England.

As for changing everything, he hasn't - not when he is forcing the middle class and impoverished to play by rules he hasn't applied to the wealthiest residents of the state. Of course, some of the state's editorial writers are buying into his self-absorbed crusade, arguing that something must be done to wipe out the huge deficit.

We already know that! What we don't know is how his Draconian plans will benefit the state's less fortunate class. Nor increase employment, not when his programs quite likely will put a lot of tax-paying Ohioans out of work.

Just when you think he can't tilt the pinball machine much more with his antics, he is now proposing to lease a highly profitable state operation to private owners - an idea so corrupt in its own arithmetic that we can only guess what Wall Street firm put him up to it. You don't have to know how to add 2 and 2 to challenge the idea of selling the state liquor sales operation to a private agency that he has created. So keen is he on improvising his promise to create jobs that details are strewn on the cutting-room floor.

Go ahead. Look it up and work the numbers yourself. Kasich is basing his case on his evidence that Ohioans are drinking more and more and will provide revenue for all of the partners down the road. Critics like Ohio Budget Watch, however, said the state would end up selling $7 billion in revenue at the fire-sale price of $1.5 billion . Booze is currently earning about $225 million annually.

Kasich's scheme in behalf of his cronies and big donors reminds me of an old short story by Damon Runyon called "Blood Pressure." In it a fearsome bully shoots crap in a hat without anybody daring him to reveal his "winning" numbers.

Skilled in the culture of Wall Street, which paid his salary and bonuses for seven years, and as fact free as his days as a commentator for Fox News, there's little hope that he will return to earth very soon. Maybe it's time for all of us to order another beer.


FoxNewsFan84 said...

What exactly is so reckless about Governor Kasich? The man is simply doing his best to close an $8 billion defecit that he inherited. Unlike the previous governor, Kasich cannot plug the hole with federal stimulus funds. Instead, he is showing true leadership by steping up and making difficult but necessary decisions.

If reducing government spending is not the answer, then what is?

Grumpy Abe said...

Well, it does appear that once again we are avoiding the dirty word of taxation in addition to leaner programs. I'm willing to pay more. Are you? I thought so. No government service is free, although you guys would like to think so. The myth continues among cranially servile conservatives who prefer to dump the city , state and country's problems on others while posting the police and fire emergency numbers on their speed dials. And we haven't even mentioned trying to educate young people when it's their turn to take over with the mess we leave behind. By the way, did you remember to vote?

Mencken said...

In other words FNF84... what sacrifice are you personally willing to make to balance the budget?

dave hess said...

Kasich is suffering from the same math brain-lapse on the sale of the state's liquor monopoly as his counterpart in Virginia. The Va. guv has been trying in vain for months to persuade the (Republican-controlled) lower house there to go along with his plan to "privatize" liquor sales and shut down state-owned ABC stores. Unfortunately for the guv, the numbers don't add up, despite his promises that a big chunk of money from the sale would go to shore up the state's bankrupt transportation fund. Even his GOP allies aren't buying it, especially after the legislature's research service did the arithmetic and reported that not only the selling price would stiff the state treasury but the loss of future revenues would further beggar state budgets. Independent researchers also have uncovered serious flaws in the governor's computations, providing clear evidence that he was motivated more by mindless ideology than by fiscal reality. Some critics have noted that closing the state stores would lead to hundreds, if not a thousand or more, net job losses, to say nothing about the fact that such a sale would be a one-time bump to the state's budgetary bottom line and provide no long-term solution for the state's mounting transportation and other needs.

FoxNewsFan84 said...


Haven't Ohioans sacrificed enough already? Hundreds of thousands of people are out of work, and people lucky enough to have jobs have seen their wages frozen. Meanwhile, their 401Ks have tanked and their homes have declined in value, while the price of everything from food to health care skyrockets. People are struggling to live day to day, and now you want to take even more out of their paychecks with higher taxes? Ohio already has one of the highest tax burdens in the country. Enough is enough.

Where is your compassion for hardworking taxpayers? You liberals seem to be very generous with other people's money.

Mencken said...

Once again you exclude cops, firemen, and teachers from the hardworking taxpayer category.

Once again you show no willingness to contribute anything to the solution other than your bad attitude and wholesale ignorance of what caused this recession.

PERS & STRS have taken huge hits to their value because of their investments in Enron and AIG. Did you know that Egregious? The system is in trouble, not because of lazy firemen, but because of flim-flam artists like Kasich and his ilk.

Home values down? Oh that must be the lazy cops fault. It had nothing to do with banks and financial institutions and their short term gain loan practices and gaming of the system.

Your ignorance on cause and effect and culpability is startling sometimes.

FoxNewsFan84 said...


As usual, you are trying to change the subject. The topic we are discussing is Ohio's $8 billion defecit and what should be done to balance the budget.

Once again I am going to ask you: how can you justify tax increases when Ohio already has one of the highest tax burdens in the country? How can you justify tax increases when when taxpayers are already struggling to get by in these tough economic times?

Ohio is rapdily losing population and businesses to other parts of the country. Are you trying to accelerate that exodus by raising taxes?

Mecnken said...

I change the subject? Whoa.

These are top ten states with the LOWEST tax burdens:

1. Alaska
2. Oklahoma
3. (tie) West Virginia
5. Tennessee
6. North Dakota
7. South Dakota
8. (tie) Mississippi
10. Louisiana

If you total the populations of those states you come up with approx. 27,577,917 people or 10,000,000 residents LESS THAN JUST THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA. So it shouldn't be surprising that the least populated states have the lowest tax burdens and Ohio's is higher by comparison.

Ohio by the way, picked up almost 200,000 residents in the last census so your mass exodus claim needs some work. And really, do you expect us to believe NCR left Dayton because cops had the benefit of collective bargaining?

But anyway, I just gave you a list of 10 states where you'd be much, much happier. No sacrifices required.