Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Troubling logic

In tough economic times, we can't hurt the taxpayer ... so we hurt some taxpayers.

I'm just trying to wrap my head around how making thousands of state employees pay more money for health insurance and asking families to pony up more money for tuition isn't raising costs? Isn't that the whole argument made by so many folks these days? That it's irresponsible to raise taxes during these troubled times (or, for that matter, any times)?

How, then, is it the 'responsible' thing to tack on additional costs while slashing necessary services and investments?

I mean, these folks are now paying more money (and $65-plus per month is a sizable increase for a lot of folks) for health insurance

Of course, by eliminating some spending elsewhere ('Go Fish' anyone?) and - heaven forbid - a marginal tax increase across the board which would have resulted in, at worst, a nominal increase could have prevented this. It just seems like foolish logic to say that to avoid making folks pay something like an extra $2.25 a year in income tax we're going to force our public servants to pay $780 a year more in health insurance or ask families to shell out $200 more a year for higher education.

It just seems we've got a whole governing ideology that is built upon saying 'protect the taxpayers' but end up sticking them with higher costs at every turn. The only difference is who you wind up paying.

And, if you think they're ever going to go back to 'the way it was' ... then I concur with Hillary and say you're dreaming.


Blogger hillary said...

$65 is a little more than I figure mine would go up by (that's more like $35), so it depends on your plan, but, yes, it sucks.

11:02 AM  
Blogger Josh M. said...

Why is it my responsibility to pay for somebody else's health insurance or college tuition, no matter how much it is?

4:31 PM  
Blogger Jmac said...

Isn't this an issue where pragmatism should trump ideology? And by that I mean if - and I'm speaking in broader terms here - if there's a service that can be offered efficiently and inexpensively through one avenue (private or public), why should one let philosophical views stamp that out?

If an ideology which preaches 'we can't raise taxes on our citizens' but then cuts services, thus raising costs on them anyway (and, in this case, in a dramatic fashion) how is that a prescription for good governance?

(And, using the health insurance analysis, in some way you're always paying for somebody else's coverage ... thus why large pools of insured individuals mean lower costs and less risk. Again, the primary contention is over who benefits from this occurance.)

6:25 PM  
Blogger Josh M. said...

You're talking about services for a limited number of people (so-called "public servants"), being paid for by everybody. You're talking about taking money away from me to pay for somebody else's services - effectively making services I buy for myself more expensive.

12:55 PM  
Blogger hillary said...

God knows we do nothing to serve the public...

4:57 PM  

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