H2O – two atoms of hydrogen and one of oxygen – makes water. You drink a lot of it daily.
H2O2 is Hydrogen Peroxide. It just adds an extra oxygen atom – but if you drink it, you’ll get sick; it’s toxic.
They lookalmost the same – but they are very different, just with the addition of that one little Oxygen atom.
Little changes mean a lot.
Like Crack Whores With A Stolen Credit Card: Minnesota has a “billion dollar surplus” – meaning that the state is on track to take in about a billion dollars more than even the DFL planned to take in after jacking taxes up by two billion dollars in the last two sessions.
Now, back in the nineties, we had surplus after surplus after surplus. And the largely DFL-controlled legislature, aided and abetted by Governor Arne Carlson (who was an old-school “moderate” Republican, who’d probably be a “moderate” DFLer today, if any such thing existed), turned every single one of them into permanent spending – which is a little like finding a $50 bill on the street, and adding $50 to your monthly entertainment budget as a result.
But it’s a new year, and another decade.
Notwithstanding the fact that the GOP wave largely skipped Minnesota (except for the House races in Greater Minnesota), the aftereffects are still being felt in Saint Paul. There’s less of the triumphalistic talk about equalizing society through taxation that the DFL gave us in the last two sessions.
It’s Such An Innocent Little Word: But make no mistake; the DFL wants to turn the surplus into spending.
They’ll call it “targeted tax relief”.
The phrase is a clever one; it includes the phrase “tax relief”, so the average Minnesotan will see “tax relief”,and assume that their taxes are going to be, y’know, relieved.
But “targeted” is to “tax relief” as “extra Oxygen atom” is to “water”: it turns it from an unalloyed good into a cudgel of DFL social engineering.
Flint-Smith Dayton has her his fingerprints on some of it:
DFL Gov. Mark Dayton’s already made it clear that child care tax credits are on his list.
Currently, about 38,000 families receive the credit. Dayton said he wants to lift the income eligibility to include 137,000 more families. He said the cost would be $175 million over two years.
“The state program is capped very low and phases out very quickly,” Dayton said. “It really doesn’t reach working middle-income, one- and two-parent families. Talk about tax reduction that benefits the middle class — that to me is probably one of the most significant things we can do.”
And isn’t that just like the state of Minnesota – spend two years trying to force daycare providers into AFSCME, and then making taxpayers pay for it again?
Just Hand It Over: In the meantime, Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk has different ideas:
Bakk said tax reductions will compete with other spending proposals during the budget-writing session, and he said the final product won’t satisfy everyone. He said he favors tax relief targeted to economic development in struggling areas of the state.
And by “struggling areas of the state”, he means the Iron Range, which after 50 years of being put out of business by DFL policy still votes DFL, and wants the rest of the state to pay for it.
Anyway – “targeted tax cuts” are to “tax cuts” as “H202″ is to “H20″; they are another term for “payoff for DFL constituencies”.