Via Sarah at Trying to Grok, I found a lovely article on NRO about some of the contents of the "stimulus" package currently before the Senate. Truly mind-boggling stuff. Leaving completely aside the question of whether the federal government should be funding some of these things at all, there are billions and billions of dollars in funding that won't add a single non-government job to the economy.

An excerpt that particularly offends me:

Setting aside this obvious sop to Democratic constituencies, the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund is problematic in that it creates a moral hazard by punishing the thrifty to subsidize the extravagant. California, which has suffered the fiscal one-two punch of a liberal, populist Republican governor and a spendthrift Democratic legislature, is in the worst shape, but even this fiduciary felon would have only to scale back spending to Gray Davis–era levels to eliminate its looming deficit.

. . .

The great French economist Frédéric Bastiat called politics “the great fiction through which everybody endeavors to live at the expense of everybody else.” But who pays for the state bailout? Savers will pay to bail out spenders, and future generations will pay to bail out the undisciplined present.

WA is looking at a pretty substantial budgetary shortfall, despite the fact that tax revenues are up. I have read that our state budget has increased by 1/3 during the Gregoire administration, though I haven't verified that for myself. Why should other states be taxed to pay for our poor fiscal management? And why should I be taxed to pay for California's idiocy?

This is where a large federal government takes you. This is where you go when you say that nothing is beyond the reach or responsibility of the national government. It's why we had a federal system in the first place. It's not robbing Peter to pay Paul; it's robbing Peter and Paul to fund community-based law enforcement initiatives to prevent robbery.



The Peter Paul Issue

I just want you to know that your "robbing Peter and Paul to fund community-based law enforcement initiatives to prevent robbery." line really calls to me. That is a beautiful way to put it
Thanks for letting me read, and letting me in!
- Carena