Wednesday, June 6, 2012
A few decades ago, a tall sheriff rode into town on his mighty white horse, leaned on his saddle horn, looked around and smiled.
"This is a wonderful green and gold area with lots of money, lots of jobs and low taxes. I can make it better."
The sheriff won election to a high office. He reviewed the state budget, which had a surplus, and started spending. He looked at the jobs and saw that many were low-paying and filled by people who did not have legal papers to be in the state. He saw that surrounding states had many more poor people than his green and gold state did, so he invited them to move into his state and apply for welfare. He started new projects that would help the people.
Soon the budget was empty. In fact, the sheriff had spent more money than he had, so he raised taxes. A lot, to cover his spending shortfalls.
When he thought he'd done all he could for the green and gold state, he looked around for more challenges. He saw that the greater land needed his magic touch, so he ran for national office. It took a couple of tries, but he won over common sense with wonderful rhetoric. He called out the menace of a red foe trying to destroy our way of life. He promised to build up the military to fight this foe at its doors, not on our shores. He promised to keep taxes low. He promised to keep government small. He promised many things, and he was elected.
The people were taken in for a long time. The sheriff did to the greater land what he had done for the green and gold state. He raised taxes, built up the military more than necessary, threw money at government projects and spent more money than he had.
The sheriff is long gone, but his memory lives on. Some of the new sheriff-wanna-bes ride through the land evoking his name and calling for a return to his policies.
If the people of the greater land listen to the new sheriff-wanna-bes and select them, the greater land will continue budget deficits, high costs for a military it no longer needs, spending on government projects and high taxes.
And that, dear readers, is a parable on what Reaganomics did for the green and gold state of California and the greater land of the United States.