Gov. Dayton has made it clear that creating a higher income tax bracket will happen, supposedly because “the rich aren’t paying their fair share.” Sen. Rest submitted a bill to charge sales tax on clothing, which I wrote about here.
Putting that information, it’s clear that the DFL’s first priority isn’t a balanced approach to budgeting. It isn’t about structural deficits. The DFL’s first priority is increasing spending on wasteful government.
It’s impossible to say that MnSCU and the U of M are they’re models of efficiency. It isn’t difficult to make the case that they’re institutions badly in need of revamping. Where in the private sector would you find a company stopping production of a great product that’s in high demand? That’s what they’re doing at SCSU.
The sad part is that that’s just the tip of the iceberg. The saddest part is that the DFL is the defender of outsized goverment.
Most departments, agencies, commissions, panels, institutions and boards either have directors of government affairs or legislative liaisons. That’s governmentspeak for lobbyists. In other words, the DFL is demanding that taxpayers pay for people whose job it is to spend more of the taxpayers’ money on things that might or might not be needed.
Recently, the Wall Street Journal wrote an article exposing the waste at the U of M. Here’s the IFO’s (the college professors’ union, aka the Inter-Faculty Organization) reaction to the article:
The focus on administrative bloat could not have come at a more unfortunate time. Over the last year we have made great progress in educating legislators about the underfunding of higher education. Last fall we helped elect some talented new legislators who are strong advocates for better funding for higher education, and several of these new legislators managed to get on the higher education funding committees. House Speaker Paul Thissen has frequently mentioned the need to fund early childhood and higher education as caucus priorities. The focus on administrative growth in higher education is likely to create ongoing negative press over the next several months, at a time when we are competing with the constituencies of other segments of the budget for limited state dollars. This looked like the session we would turn things around—but unfortunately, we are already on the defensive.
The faculty union’s first reaction wasn’t that it’s disgusting to have money being spent foolishly. The IFO’s first reaction was that the publicity might hurt their request for additional spending.
I strongly recommend that you read the IFO newsletter. It reads like an internal DFL communication. The reality is that this is typical DFL thinking. The only conclusion a thinking person can draw is that the DFL isn’t interested in efficient government that’s right-sized.
The DFL’s highest priority is spending money. If some of that money is spent foolishly, then they’re fine with that.