Mimsy Were the Borogoves

Editorials: Where I rant to the wall about politics. And sometimes the wall rants back.

DC Votes: Laundering votes and money

Jerry Stratton, April 1, 2009

Over at Hot Air, they’re talking about the perennial cry to make Washington, DC, a state for voting purposes. This time, they want to trade an extra seat for Utah, apparently because Utah is reliably Republican. What about those of us who aren’t Republican? What do we get? Bigger bureaucracies and higher taxes.

This is one part of an important issue: the increasing tendency for federal and state governments to become their own constituency. DC is an egregious example because so many people there are part of the federal bureaucracy. But the same thing is happening across the nation. We have it especially bad in California, where taxes are laundered through government unions and used for political lobbying to increase spending on government programs, such as prisons.

According to the State Controller’s Office, there are 434,548 employees on the California payroll; this doesn’t include federal employees working in California. This means that over 1% of the population of California is on the public payroll. Add in the 449,200 Californians receiving public assistance, and the number of people reliant on government programs for their paycheck rises to at least 2.6%. That’s a swing vote! It means that on average, small changes are likely to favor more government programs. It makes it difficult to reform the criminal justice system, and difficult to reform the educational system, because the government itself is voting against reform.

Now take a look at DC: out of 699,800 employees, 233,200 are government employees. I don’t want Utah in exchange for this. I want people who are going to vote in favor of freedom and free market competition, and against government monopolies on services.

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