Red State Welfare . . . and Rick Perry . . . “Texas Should Secede from The Union”

Red State Welfare . . . and Rick Perry . . . “Texas Should Secede from The Union”

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texas-flag-mapIn a discussion held during Perry’s bid for the 2012 Republican nomination he openly mentioned that Texas had, during his administration, readied legislation calling for the state to secede from the union. The bill though was put aside—Perry apparently forgot where—and was of course never enacted. Too bad for America. It was just later, after he was the candidate that Mitt Romney began the narrative about the lazy, uninspired among us who are the “takers” in the society as opposed to his crowd who are the “makers”. Texas is one of those low-tax, Red states that rails most vociferously and most often—with loud cries of socialism and federal interference—against the national government. Yet Texas gets back (according to a study done by Wallet Hub) 1.40 for every dollar it pays the government in taxes. This money comes in the form of what’s known in government speak as “transfer payments” or subsidies. States that pay in more than they get back (like my blue state) subsidizes those who don’t pay in enough to cover the cost of government services that they get back. This is income re-distribution what the Red-state Republican criticize as socialism. Without it, however, they would all be much worse off.

I live in a high-tax, deep Blue state (thank God) that gets only $.40 for every tax dollar that goes to the federal government. Right next door Wisconsin, a state resistant to unions and opposed to a higher minimum wage, gets back $1.72 for every federal tax dollar. Scott Walker, the Governor of Wisconsin, is using the Koch brother’s money to run for President on a pro-business, anti-union agenda. But business and economics reporter Michael Hiltzik wrote in a recent L.A. Times piece that business friendly (ALEC, Koch-sponsored) policies don’t create more jobs, they just create more wealth for the wealthy. Boy—is that a surprise! If all a governor needs to do is bust unions and read scripture then maybe Scott Walker is the man for Wisconsin. Otherwise the state should go back to its populist, Progressive roots.

It’s real disingenuous (not to mention tacky and deceitful) for these Republicans in Red States to criticize the federal government.

And it gets worse, Red-state Louisiana—a conservative Republican stronghold, has (according to WalletHub) more than three dollars (3.35 to be exact) come back to the state for every dollar paid to the federal government in taxes. It’s one of the poorest states in the union in terms of per capita income. Yet the governor Bobby Jindahl is right now campaigning in Iowa and New Hampshire for the Republican nomination, telling people how he’s going to turn the country around. This has to be a Saturday Night Live joke. This Cajun, bible spewin’ phony couldn’t turn a tricycle around.

Scott Walker and Bobby Jindahl are just the two best examples of Red-state hypocrisy. Right now these guys are all up in Iowa and New Hampshire, trottin’ around runnin’ for President, tellin’ everyone (the gullible and foolish) how if we just elect them, they’ll fix everything. With all the grid-lock in Washington, and the U.S. fighting wars all over the globe, this is not the kind of help we in America need right now, unless these bozos can figure out a way that we can all borrow money from Greece.

Louisiana is an example of one of the worst Red-states, but the list goes on and on. Here is a listing of the top ten states (all Red) in terms of the money received from the federal government to the money paid in in taxes.

      1. Mississippi – for every dollar the state pays in federal taxes, it gets back $3.07

      2. Alaska – for every dollar paid in, gets back $1.42

      3. Alabama – for every dollar paid in, gets back $3.28

      4. Louisiana – for every dollar paid in, gets back $3.35

      5. Indiana – for every dollar paid in, gets back $2.01

      6. Montana – for every dollar paid in, gets back $1.55

      7. South Carolina – for every dollar paid in, gets back $1.92

      8. West Virginia – for every dollar paid in, gets back $2.22

      9. Tennessee – for every dollar paid in, gets back $1.64

      10. Kentucky (Mich McConnell’s state) for every dollar paid in, gets back $2.39

All of these states—in terms of economic growth, job creation, unemployment and per capita income are sub-par, in the bottom one half of all the states. These states are all, it should be noted, anti-union (right to work states), anti-raising the minimum wage, with strong re-distributive, pro-ALEC tax policies that favor the wealthy over the working poor. They are all Red-states with predominantly Republican legislatures and Republican governors. Does anyone discern an oligarchic, anti-egalitarian pattern here?

It’s real disingenuous (not to mention tacky and deceitful) for these Republicans in Red States to criticize the federal government. It’s a little bit like borrowing money from one of your best friends, knowing you never intend to pay him back, and then sneaking around telling everyone behind his back what a chump and a loser he is. The numbers though don’t tell the real human story. It’s easy to cite statistics, but behind every one of these numbers is a real human being—a working single mom just trying to make ends meet on a minimum wage salary, a young under-employed college grad struggling with a burdensome student debt, an old person just trying to get by on social security. Republicans don’t care though as long as they can take care of (succor) their fat-cat Republican donors like the Koch brothers. Remember it’s not about the average American worker—after all, it never was.  It’s all still about money and power — making the rules that we chumps have to live by.

Personally, as a chump,  I’d like to see Texas secede, and it could take all the above listed states (including Georgia and Florida) with it. They could form the “New Confederacy”. After all, they already have a flag that most southerners seem to prefer over “The Stars and Stripes”. I say good-riddance to a bunch of free-loaders.

The “Cowboys” would no longer be America’s team. But that’s okay. I never much liked Jerry Jones and the Dallas team anyway.

The Money Trader

 

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