Tax Cuts for the Rich

Missouri Governor B. Holden announces a student loan forgiveness program for those who study life sciences and work in Missouri.

Why do I dare mock such a proposal? I mean, other than mockery is my first language?

This is a growth industry in our state, and it is an area that attracts the high wage jobs that we need in Missouri,” Holden said.

Because the johnking schnuck is going to forgive student loans for people who graduate college and then get high paying jobs in the state of Missouri. Because B. Holden thinks that eligible employees bring jobs to a state. Here’s a free clue, B. Holden: cheap labor brings jobs to a state, not a bunch of kids with college degrees and expectations of high pay. I guess that’s where you step in to offer other taxpayer-funded corporate welfare “incentives” to companies who would employ the graduates for whom taxpayers paid.

Instead of kids who can walk out of college into high-paying jobs, guvnor, how about some tax relief for the following:

  • Computer science students who end up as supervisors for UPS.
  • Liberal arts students who work as shipping receiving clerks, but who can recite the Porter scene from Macbeth when the delivery truck drivers ring his bell.
  • Drama students who serve coffee at Borders with flourish unmatched by others?

Those poor souls out there who went to college to better themselves but refuse to submit to cubicle, or laboratory, existence deserve more sympathy than fraggles who went to school and walked out of school into any job over twenty thousand dollars a year.

None of them, of course, deserve my fortuitously-earned tax dollars, though, but that sympathy’s better than your tax cut for the future rich you’re disguising as a program for the children.

Remember, B. Holden Wants Not To Close Loopholes, But To Determine Who Passes Through Them

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, oddly enough, entitles this story “Small firms will pay piper if big companies get tax break”.

Stop the O’Learying presses, wouldja? So someone has to make up the difference when the state passes out millions of dollars to Ford, Chrysler, Boeing, or any of the other dozen or so companies that employ a couple of thousand people whenever one of those companies rattles its cup among the various states when contemplating whether to move or not?

Lord, love a duck, I know I am an English major, but this sort of thing just seems obvious to me. It’s about time a journalist catches up.

Of course, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch will forget this concern the next time that one of these companies decides it can get a better handout from Kentucky and will run breathless stories about the negotiating and the threats of layoffs, and you, taxpayer, will be forgotten.

And Speaking of That Executive Branch (I)

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch also reports that Police are confused and fearful over new gun law.

Hypothetically speaking:

Suppose St. Louis police stop a car late at night in a high-crime neighborhood for a traffic violation. Suppose there’s a 21-year-old in the vehicle, along with three 20-year-olds. And suppose officers find four guns on the floor.

“What do the police do?” asked Mike Stelzer, an associate city counselor assigned to the St. Louis Police Department who offered the scenario.

I guess they write a ticket, tell the kids to drive safely, and go back to patrolling. I guess that’s not the answer they want, or that Mike Stelzer wants.

He knows what the cops would do today: Confiscate the weapons, arrest the occupants and figure it was a blow struck for public safety.

Well, yes, because that’s illegal today, having a gun in the car. Day after tomorrow, it’s not illegal. You see, the executive branch enforces the laws. It doesn’t make them (although with the all-you-can-charge salad bar on the books now, it can often pick them, can’t it?).

    “This is scary stuff,” said Stelzer. “A police officer’s job is hard enough without something like this. Can we seize those guns? Can we arrest anybody in the car? We don’t have the answers yet.”

Here’s a pointer for you associate counselors, a little tidbit you remember. It might just help you get promoted to full city counselor: Police cannot arrest people for doing legal things. Police cannot just seize lawful property. Police should also avoid discharging their weapons unless their lives are endangered, and should also avoid discharging their clubs unless violently resisted by criminals. Of course, in the city of St. Louis, perhaps these things are not important to city counselors or police.

Police Chief Joe Mokwa worries about those kinds of details, and the larger question of whether the new law allowing the carrying of concealed weapons – and the automobile provision in particular – will erode progress made into cutting violence on city streets.

:: sigh :: Because once law-abiding citizens are armed, they’ll start committing crimes?

The whole gun thing wearies me. I guess that’s what our agitators, litiguous legislators, and our guardians, our “betters,” want. I am bored of writing about it now.

Buy That Man a Guinness

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Anheuser-Busch has decided not to contribute to Missouri Governor B. Holden’s re-election campaign because he vetoed the concealed carry bill. The legislature, of course, overrode that veto, but seems that August A. Busch III is a sportsman and a citizen concerned with his personal security and he’s in a punishing mood. Anheuser-Busch as a whole supports candidates like it sponsors sports teams, that is, it gives money to all of them. Except, now, B. Holden.

Title this lesson Beer Baron with Bling Bling Likes Bang Bang, Bye Bye Billy if you like.

Let it be said that I was so pleased with the story that I almost bought a sixer of Budweiser tonight to reward Anheuser-Busch for its stand, until I realized that I cannot drink it and that the other attendees of El Guapo’s mixer-sixer party this weekend would beat the bud out of me if I contributed an Anheuser-Busch product while drinking their ten-dollar-a-six-pack contributions. Skull Splitter, anyone? Not me, thanks!

Governor Holden Proposes to Eliminate Loopholes For Small-, Medium-Sized Businesses

Missouri Governor B. Holden has called a special session of the legislature to increase state revenue as much as he can without calling for a full statewide vote for approval. By eliminating tax “loopholes,” according to this story in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, B. Holden wants to raise state money to spend on The Children.

Governor B. Holden undoubtedly wishes to reassure the really large companies in Missouri, the Fords, the Boeings, and the Anheuser-Busches, as well as the sports teams, that their loopholes won’t be closed. Any time they start scuffing their feet and publicly muse about closing a factory or (heh heh) moving the ball team to East St. Louis, your state government will still be ready to shut off your tax liability entirely, add costly infrastructure to support your plants, or build you a whole freaking stadium.

Just remember not to flaunt it before the rabble populace he continues to flout.

Close The Loopholes So They Can Open New Ones

Missouri legislators (Republicans) are battling the Missouri governor (Democrat) over the current state budget. He’s vetoed the budget bills they’ve sent him because those bills cut spending to match the incoming revenue. Instead, the governor wants them to increase taxes to meet the required outlay. If you’ve read this blog for any length of time (i.e., you’re not just here because Google spit it out when you looked for EVA MENDEZ or MONICA BELLUCCI HOT PIX), you know whom I favor in this battle.

One thing worth noting in this particular bout of sensibility versus deliver-the-goods-so-I-can-get-elected-Senator-ability is that a “non-partisan” group called something like Committee for State Education Security has “coincidentally” released a report that some of the largest corporations in the state are paying nothing in corporate tax every year. No Sputnik, Sherlokov.

After all, whenever one of those large corporations ponders a move to the unspoiled wild tax breaks of Illinois for its production facilities, what’s a poor bunch of legislators to do but promise tax credits, no corporate taxes, a free stadium, and free car washes for corporate executives? These same tax breaks mean that the corporations pay less taxes? Say it ain’t so! Apparently it’s good enough that these corporations employ workers who will pay taxes, enough so to unfairly burden those workers with the tax load until such time that the workers cannot provide statewide Meat on Streets programs to ensure every stray dog can eat New York Strip steak. When one puppy goes hungry, it’s time to soak the greedy corporations.

The state government, through its successive crises, robs Peter to pay Paul, and then burglarizes Paul’s house when he’s out spending the money. Further proof that Keynes’ balancing wheel is a little wobbly.

Balancing the Budget on the…er, Backs of Porn Users

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the Missouri state government, or certain portions therein, want to add an excise tax on porn and strippers, which a senator somberly, and regretfully, informs us is a growth industry in Missouri. Yeah, I am sure he regrets getting any more money to spend.

More troubling, though, is that the state wants to start seizing assets of outlaws more easily. Sure, it’s drug dealers this week, but what happens when the state needs more money? Seizing cars from speeders, sorry, I mean those guilty of “excessive vehicle noise,” to support a program to keep people from spreading pathogens on the state grape? A slippery slope’s not a fallacy, folks, it’s a description of government.

The Wheels of Legislature, Grinding

Since I have started this blog, I have discovered things beyond the ken of normal man. I have researched into the bowels of the Internet, and I have found shocking, eldritch things. Such as what government does daily.

Of course, they put it out there in plain sight, on Web sites of the .gov domain, where no one will see it. How better to hide the time-wasting activities designed to provide legislators with a part-time job to fill the time between fundraisers and elections?

For example, on the Missouri State Senate site, I have learned that our state senate has passed bills for the following just on Thursday (April 24, 2003):

  • Fire department should get water during emergencies wherein, I assume the fire department will be called to put said water on a fire. This bill seems to specify that the fire departments should get water even if they haven’t paid their water bills. I have to wonder if this represents an upcoming budgetary cut.
  • Car rental companies cannot charge more in damages than the replacement value of the car. Seems like a good idea, but it doesn’t really fit with laissez faire capitalism. Simple publication of the fact that XYZ rental company will charge you $60,000 for a stolen Hyundai Accent would probably impact XYZ enough to make them reconsider. More than a $1,000 fine would. And the fine print type size can be no smaller than 10 point!
  • Made it a class D Felony to photograph or otherwise record an animal research or production facility, and to intentionally and knowingly release a pathogen therein. So Dan Savage can lick Gary Bauer’s doorknob in Iowa, but if he coughs in a Tyson chicken plant in Missouri, he’s going to jail!
  • Names the official state grape. Okay, I admit, when it comes time for my weekly report at work, I like to finish a bunch of short things to at least have a number of items in my bulleted list of accomplishments. Surely the senators feel the same way, as they approved this one liner of a bill. I won’t tell you WHAT the state grape is. You’ll have to check it out yourself.

I understand passing these things in the state senate is only a third of the tri-partite bicameral-legislature-and-governor-signature system in place here in Missouri, so they’re not laws yet.

But I have to wonder how important a lot of the legislature’s business is. Do we really need a state grape? Legislation defining, and reglating, professional ultimate fighting (no throat hitting allowed)? How seriously will my state senator vote on these things? How will he (or she) react to a letter detailing a list of my positions on these issues?

Rightly, I would be labeled a crackpot, but wrongly I expect I would be ignored and/or sent a form letter based on some weird keyword search/merge. But this is what my state representative government does all day, four days a week, all legislative year.