Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Independent Collegian Gets F in Economics

Randomly surfing, I spotted the following headline in a recent issue of The Independent Collegian:

Kasich plans to scrap Strickland’s 3C rail program and send 16,000 jobs elsewhere

John Kasich, of course, is Ohio's Republican Governor-elect, and the Collegian is the campus newsrag of the University of Toledo. So right away, we can parse the headline and what is to follow. Kasich, being a Republican, must necessarily be reviled by an Ohio college student newspaper which, of course, encourages only budding leftist journos (are there any other kind?) to write for them.

But what's more interesting in this hit-piece is how ideology trumps any knowledge of economics or politics. Kasich plans to reject Federal funding to set up an allegedly high-speed all-Ohio rail service from Cleveland to Cincinnati via Columbus. The Collegian sees this as robbing Ohio of "16,000 jobs" and views it as hypocrisy on the part of Kasich who (correctly) tarred current Governor Ted "Tax 'Em High" Strickland as having lost 400,000 jobs on his brief watch.

Well, dudes, check again. The way you create REAL jobs is to encourage the private sector to do it. Ohio's now blessedly-terminated rail line would be funded by the Feds, sure. I.e., by hapless taxpayers from Ohio and other states. Once built, it would, like Amtrak and all other publicly-funded US rail services, lose money by the bucketload. Which would be made even worse by the ridiculously high union-led salaries that would be paid to the railway's staffers, all of whom, surprise, would be paid for by out-of-work Ohio taxpayers--presumably.

The problem with Federally funded or Federally assisted programs like the one Kasich intends to terminate is that once the initial $$ have been spent, the boondoggle entity gets turned over to state and local jurisdictions which then must, ta-da, raise taxes on a consistent basis to fund a money-losing operation and cave in to extortionate public employee union salary demands. It's precisely this kind of thing that's brought Rust Belt states like Ohio and Michigan to their knees. 

By rejecting this boondoggle, Kasich will save individual Ohioans and Ohio-based businesses billions of dollars going forward. This is a small step in the direction of real business stimulus which will create real employment, not more taxpayer-funded union jobs, the kind that are bankrupting state after state. 

Kasich's action is similar to the recent rejection by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie of a massive second-tunnel project from New Jersey to Manhattan. The Feds were to pony up a good chunk of the money, New Jersey and the Port Authority were to pony up the rest. And if there were cost overruns (which, given union featherbedding, there will be--and how!) New Jersey alone would have to pick up the bill.

Christie rightly torpedoed the whole project, saving his state from a major--and perpetual--financial catastrophe. On a lesser scale, Kasich proposes to do the same thing.

So, Collegians. Watch and learn. 16,000 more Ohioans on the public dole payroll will only serve to increase Ohio's systemic unemployment which is mainly due to the state's ridiculously high, business-deterring taxes. If you want to pay for 16,000 more public employees for the rest of your lives, why don't you do it? And in the meantime, why don't you stop writing stupid, ill-informed editorials and leave Kasich alone to clean up Strickland's sorry mess?


Anonymous said...

Oh dear! There you go again. Trying to insert logic and facts into the discussion. Quit that! Tell us how you feel about it.

Wonker said...

Hey. I HAVE no feelings. I'm a Republican Conservative.