WDAM Viewpoint- Governmental Economics

July 22, 2011

Every new election cycle brings us the same rhetoric as the last.  Whether they promise to put people to work, cut taxes, cut spending, work with the other side, or put us on the right path, no politician has said much of anything new since the first Neanderthal campaigned to be king of the cave.

One thing that seems lost on the political class, is that government should be run like a business—or even a household.  Oh they may say that, but once in office they get amnesia or cave to peer pressure or whatever.  Anyone who has ever balanced a check book understands that if you bring in $1000, you can only spend $1000.  If you can, spend less and put the remainder aside for when you may need it.  Spend more than you bring in and you go broke.

Unlike "Wallyworld", Government has nothing to sell to generate revenue. They generate revenue by taxing the populace and, unlike a traditional business situation, we don't get a choice about taking our money elsewhere for a better deal.  We pay our taxes for the considerable privilege of living in this great country.

In turn, government should respect us enough to run by the same principles businesses and individuals employ.  If there is no money to fund a pet project…it doesn't get done unless a private citizen decides to get involved.  Many a small business person has cut or foregone their own salary in lean times to make sure there was enough money to stay afloat.

We all have to be good stewards of our personal finances, or we will get into trouble quickly.  I would submit that governments have a duty to the taxpayers to be better stewards of funds—because they are using our money…not their own.  I'm Jim Cameron and that's today's Viewpoint.  Let us know what you think.