Friday, January 10, 2003

A modest proposal

Our dear Gov. Rick Perry said that our incoming legislative leaders, Lt. Gov. Dewhurst and Rep. Tom Craddick may not be up to the task of repairing Texas' near-hopeless education system.

The Republican Party hasn't had control of Texas like this since Reconstruction. They campaigned on being the party that would get the job done. I guess most Republican voters didn't realize it was going to be a hatchet job.

For too long conservatives have been saying that "liberals" don't have ideas. Here, how's this one?

Reduce sales and property taxes and create a modest, flat, constitutionally capped state income tax -- say 3 percent. Hell, use twisted Rovian logic and sell it as a federal tax decrease, since you can deduct a portion your local income tax payments from your federal return.

Hell, throw some voucher plan in there for all I care. Get rid of Ross's Relic and return to a system where the state pays each school district the equivalent of one teacher's salary for every x number of students (20, maybe).

You got a better idea?

Monday, January 06, 2003

Another New Year of Crap

Took a good long break over the holidays. It's nice to get away from the same-old-same old for awhile, and that's what I did. Sorry to disappoint anyone out there who looks for crap from me on a daily basis. Sorry, I just don't work that way. I do this when I feel like it, and after Xmas, I just wasn't in the mood so much. You want consistency ... go hit up Atrios or Hesiod.

I do think it's pretty clear that we're in for another year of crap. Let's see -- we can't find any "weapons of mass destruction" in Iraq, so we're gonna go pound 'em anyway. North Korea's got The Bomb and some missiles that *might* be able to reach U.S. shores. We're not gonna pound them, but we are going to rely on a "missile shield" that doesn't work to protect us. The economy sucks, and Bush's idea of a fix is to cut dividend taxes, which most economists are saying won't do anything in the short term anyway, and even if companies suddenly started paying out more in dividends, most of that's going to ultra-rich folks who will probably just stash the money in an offshore account or invest it in a new call center in India. The Feds make noise about giving more money to education while our local school district continues to hemorrhage cash. Oh, and we can't find Osama, but it's a good idea to deport entire families who fled to the U.S. to get away from persecution.

Yup. All in all a good start on a crappy year.