‘Once again, Republicans cut taxes’ — dammit!

Progressivism is expensive

When Democrats need a fig leaf, The Capital Times is their haberdasher. Editor emeritus Dave Zweifel sews up a size XXL to cover up the Democrat(ic) governor’s high-tax, spending spree wish list. 

Blessed with a two-year $4.4 billion surplus, WI Gov. Tony Evers proposed to spend darn near all of it on “unmet needs.” Teacher pay, especially.

Gov. Evers wanted to hike general purpose spending an astounding 8.8%. The Republican dominated Joint Finance Committee pared that down to 1.5%.

The rest? It goes back to taxpayers from whence it came. Lower income tax rates, and $100 off the average property tax bill. Total tax relief: $2.7 billion! Call it the prosperity dividend.

That kind of fiscal stewardship has the editor emeritus of The Capital Times in a dither. Like all progressives, Dave has never met a tax break he won’t fight. He recounts that Lee Sherman Dreyfus returned a surplus to the people in 1978 and then a recession hit and Tony Earl raised taxes (instead of reducing spending).

“Once again, Republicans cut taxes and we await the inevitable economic chaos,” the partisan Cassandra wails

But here’s the difference: frugal Republican legislatures have been building up a rainy day fund for years. Their budget will grow this emergency fund to $2.1 billion. Zweifel never mentions that.

Our favorite restaurant in Middleton is temporarily closed for lack of help

Democrats subsidize unemployment

Gov. Tony Evers this week vetoed a GOP bill that sought to eliminate Wisconsin’s participation in enhanced federal unemployment benefits, which provide unemployed individuals with an extra $300 per week in addition to the state’s maximum weekly benefit of $370.

Spend it all!

Dave wants the surplus money spent, not returned. His analogy: “Fact is, if a family happens to wind up with some extra funds at the end of the year, it’ll fix that leaky roof or replace the balky furnace before they become an even bigger problem.”

Thanks to Republican tax breaks averaging $1,200 per family, that family will be able to do just that.

In any event, the feds are poised to shovel $1.2 trillion (with a T) at “infrastructure,” broadly defined to include “resilience to the changing climate.” 

Dave would just as soon state government commit the one-time surplus to on-going expenditures, allow local governments to build that largesse into their base, then cry foul when the money gusher dries up. Republicans spend $3.7 billion less than Tony Evers wanted.

→ Your rich uncle bequeaths a sizable sum. Do you take out membership in a pricey country club with steep annual dues?

Blaska’s Bottom LineIn any event, the state Republican budget couldn’t be all that draconian; four Assembly Democrats voted for it and three of the 13 Democrats in the Senate — including Democrat leader Janet Bewley of far-north Mason WI.

When was the last time a state budget passed with bipartisan support?

(Answer: 14 years ago.)


About David Blaska

Madison WI
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9 Responses to ‘Once again, Republicans cut taxes’ — dammit!

  1. Liberty says:

    Finances and logic are not leftist strong suits.


  2. Gary L. Kriewald says:

    Dave Zweifel can’t legitimately be called a Cassandra, since Cassandra’s prophesies were always true (though they were never believed).

    Just caught the headlines on WI Public Radio, which reported on DB’s federal lawsuit. Our host was referred to as “a conservative blogger.” Guess the folks at WPR couldn’t bring themselves to utter his name.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Tom PITA says:

    Where did the $4.4B come from? We just had a year of massive unemployment. How do we go from that starting place to a huge surplus?

    PS – Do you have a legal fund setup for your suit?


  4. patrickmoloughlin says:

    “Then we will wish that we hadn’t squandered a chance to put that surplus to good use.”

    In other words, “I know better how your money should be spent.” It is the central point from all liberals.


  5. georgessson says:

    Gov. Tony Evers this week vetoed a GOP bill that sought to ELIMINATE Wisconsin’s participation in enhanced federal unemployment benefits, which provide unemployed individuals with an EXTRA $300 per week IN ADDITION to the state’s maximum weekly benefit of $370.

    Guess he’d rather spend FUTURE dollars now, rather than have a modicum of a future cushion, and relegate debt to subsequent generations.. And that certainly does NOT help mfrs/employers have a full workforce (and pay WI corporate income taxes).

    Capital Times: “The late Lee Sherman Dreyfus, a moderate Republican, was propelled into the governor’s office back in 1978 by promising to RETURN a $900 million state budget surplus to the taxpayers. After everyone got their checks, the economy plunged into a recession and soon the state wasn’t only out of money, it needed to raise taxes to maintain services and balance the budget.”

    NOT quite the case at all: The United States entered an ENERGY recession again in January 1980 and RETURNED to growth six months later in July 1980. The downturn ended 16 months later, in November 1982. The economy entered a STRONG recovery and experienced a lengthy expansion through 1990.

    Capital Times: “Just like the homeowner spending extra cash to fix the house now so it will last for years to come, the state should be fixing its festering problems to make Wisconsin strong for years to come.”

    Nope, SMART homeowners have a contingency fund for emergencies, as in an untouched “SURPLUS”. And do not NEED to go into debt…

    Do Libs/Progressives EVER tell the complete story??


  6. WashCoRepub says:

    Dave Zweifel… Like John Nichols, with less warmth and charm.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. patrickmoloughlin says:

    I don’t like to engage in name calling, but Dave Z. is an imbecile when it comes to economics. I highly recommend he read Henry Hazlitt’s book, Economics In One Lesson. (I don’t think he can handle Sowell, it would be over his head.) The one lesson is that you must evaluate an economic policy by it’s impact on ALL groups, not just the ones staring you in the face. As Dave B. points out, Zweifel has no interest whatsoever in the impact of the wealth that was CONFISCATED in order to pay those extra unemployment benefits. How many taxpayers were NOT able to fix their leaky roof or their balky furnace because of that? It’s quite easy to see the impact of an extra $300 per week in unemployment. Less so to see the impact of the $300 that another taxpayer doesn’t get to spend as he wished, because he doesn’t have it anymore. Meanwhile Dave Zweifel is feeling quite good about himself and his generosity, with other people’s money.

    Liked by 1 person

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