Friday, May 15, 2009

Are Ya Serious: Minnesota Huh?

I'm fascinated by the text of a Facebook group calling on Minnesotans to lobby their governor against his proposed spending cuts. The text of the group's Facebook page:
A $6.4 billion deficit. The longest and deepest economic recession since WWII. A quarter of a million Minnesotans out of work. 1,000 more losing their jobs every week.

Governor Pawlenty's solution:

* Eliminate health care for 113,000 working Minnesotans, including 20,000 kids
* Cut $764 million from local hospitals, forcing many in Greater Minnesota to close
* Lay off 12,000 Minnesota teachers
* Put 16,000 health care professionals out of work
* Close nursing homes around the state
* Saddle the sick and disabled with higher fees and fewer services
* Fire police officers, fire fighters, and paramedics with deep cuts to Local Government Aid and County Program Aid
* Put the state $1.8 billion in debt for the next 20 years

Call Governor Pawlenty. Tell him he can't cut his way out of this recession. Fair and reasonable revenue is necessary to keep our state whole through this crisis.
I really sympathize with the staffers at the Governor's office who will be fielding the phone calls called for here. I'm having trouble parsing exactly what this group is saying and I'm looking right at it. They clearly understand that a massive budget deficit and projected long-term debt are bad things. Cutting back on government spending, however, is apparently also unacceptable. Clearly they would prefer he just wave his magic wand and fix the problem without having to make any difficult choices. And what on Earth do they mean by "fair and reasonable revenue"? Newsflash: revenue's going to drop in a downturn, and there's not much the governor can due about that. Unless is this cryptoprogressive code for "raise taxes", you know, because raising taxes in a downturn has always worked in the past. Sigh.

Also, what exactly are they getting at with that "Greater Minnesota" business? I may have studied in Minnesota, but I've got 'Sconnie in my blood, and if those lutefisk-eaters come lookin' for lebensraum in these parts they'll find me digging my foxhole on the St. Croix bluffs!


Elephantschild said...

Is it a typo? Did they mean "Greater Minneapolis?"

Lutefisk-eaters. Good one.

Kristina said...


Go ahead - cut government spending, as long as you ...don't... cut government spending....

My boss and I were actually talking about this on Friday. Every firm we do business with has done some sort of cost-savings measure - layoffs, wage reductions, furloughs, four-day workweeks. How many politicians/government agencies have been asked to make these same sacrifices? I'm guessing none. So, what, we should pay higher taxes so that the Government doesn't have to cut costs and jobs like everyone else?