The Beginning of the End…

Well you all heard it. It was the perfect variation on a theme from 1988 – “read my lips” – and it will mark the beginning of the end of another Republican governor.

If you haven’t figured it out yet, Janet Napolitano is the winner and gets the last laugh. It’s like the spouse who ran up the credit card and then bailed on the marriage except it’s a lot worse.

The losers in this are those who became dependent on Janet’s programs who now have to be weaned off the public teet. And then there’s the taxpayers who may have to foot the bill for Janet’s reckless and irresponsible shopping spree.

But the biggest single loser in this is the politician who just painted herself in a corner by proposing $1 BILLION in new taxes. ANY increase in taxes just became Jan Brewer’s. She owns it politically.

If for some reason Brewer’s temporary tax increase does make it to the ballot, God forbid there will be enough uninformed and ignorant voters who will pass it.

And this comes at a time when sales tax revenues continue to decline.

Yes, this is the beginning of the end of any expectation that Governor Brewer may have had of winning a second term. She just invited primary opponents.


  1. I’m amused by the tax loving Brewer apologists commenting here. Consumer spending is in the tank. As pointed out by another poster, sales tax collections are down, and the national savings rate is up by double digits for the wrong reasons. All indications are that people are scared and want to hold onto what they have, yet our gov wants to pull a billion a year away from them. Gee I wonder what effect that will have on sales tax receipts.

  2. Tom- ideas????

  3. Richard,

    I never said anything about closing public universities or libraries. Please if you are going to caricature my point of view at least make sure to read what I’ve already written so it at least sounds like something I’ve recommended! Otherwise, your straw men parodies aren’t going to persuade anyone!

    I was talking about elementary schools in #33 above which should have been obvious by the clear mention of children. And, I said nothing about libraries (which for the most part aren’t run by the state anyway).

  4. Kevin, as great as it is to have the ideological viewpoint that government should do nothing, it’s not realistic. The State of Arizona is one of the biggest employers in the state.


    Your viewpoint is as ideological as mine. Why does yours get a pass–simply because the current administration is able to think about spending money it doesn’t even currently have?

    I reject the notion that what I’m saying is impractical. Before Napolitano we didn’t always of necessity run this crazy in the red and not all these government services are as necessary as you imply–or at least you have yet to provide justification for them in terms of their necessity.

    Let’s level the playing field and quit pretending that your view is the correct one because YOU see it as eminently workable. Try providing real arguments for your position instead of calling mine unrealistic.

    I don’t buy it and no one else should either.

    I’ve provided specifics, I’ve dealt with numbers as you requested. The real problem is we just have two different competing views of government.

    If yours works so well – why are we in this mess in the first place? I mean, if you want to “get real”.

  5. I’m not saying mine is correct. I’m saying you have to include every option available. Janet’s government growth was sickening and we let it happen but the reality still remains that we’d be in this situation without the growth.

  6. Kevin, are you saying the community colleges and state universities do a good job?

    What would be wrong, using your philosophy, with eliminating them? I honestly would like to know.

    Again, am I wrong – please correct me – but don’t some state funds go to public libraries? Admittedly, you are right that most are city- and county-run. But how would a free-market conservative justify public libraries?

    I ask this without being snarky. I’m sincerely trying to understand where you draw the line.

  7. Roger,

    I appreciate that but you’re the one who’s excluding options by saying we can’t cut anymore because of drastic consequences.

    If Janet could add a billion plus in spending over her time as governor (and I’m guessing that is well below what she really pulled off given the fact that 2007 to 2008 the net new spending was almost a billion) surely we can work on cutting back three billion. I’m not saying it won’t be a matter of hard choices or that pain won’t be involved but it needs to be done.

    Otherwise, shortly we’ll be in the same situation as California. Or the Feds. It’s just not necessary.

  8. Veritas Vincit says

    First let me say hi to AZGOPgal (as I now think I know who she is… but maybe not).

    Second, Jan Brewer has what it takes to do what must be done. Everyone (both sides of the isle) must pitch in together to get us out of the soup.

    Third, blame goes to the previous legislature(s) who went along with Nappy’s loopy revenue projections *especially those special republicans who always voted with Nappy(and we know who they are no matter how much they try to posture now).

    Had Republican members stood up to and obstructed Nappy, she couldn’t have put us behind the 8-ball as we now find ourselves.

  9. Richard,

    I am all for communities deciding to provide public works when done appropriately and in such a way that it doesn’t bankrupt the government, the people, or support an immoral or unwise course of action.

    Universities can provide opportunities for economic and other growth that public K-12 schools can’t and often their research activities can be valuable over the long term. However, there is also much about universities that could be improved especially when they echo governmental inefficiency to a large degree. It’s likely a longer discussion than can be had in a combox.

    I am not your typical “free market conservative” (whatever that is) and so I would tell you that communities may act freely together to do things so long as everyone is in agreement in accordance with the laws on the books and also in accordance with what is right and wrong. In other words, a government must be moral and obey the very laws it puts in place which means at bottom that you can’t go around spending money you don’t have.

  10. VV,

    Yes. I agree the legislature is largely responsible for this mess but the top executive authority will never escape the chopping block when doing something like implementing a tax increase in bad times (unless, like Napolitano, they run off to Washington).

    Vote them all out of office, I don’t care! I wish they were held responsible for how they’ve mismanaged the budget and other things wrong in our state.

    We need men and women who will rise to the top and do what is required instead of what is politically feasible and acceptable.

  11. RINO Hunter says

    Maricopa GOP – is right on the money check out paulina morris’ contributions to AZ dems in (Competitive Edge PAC) and her husband Jason is largest funraiser and Board member for planned parenthood.

    Real Republican in 2010 has a great long list but let’s start looking at the short list (Thomas,Franks,etc.)

    Veritas de Vino has had too much wine… Is he on someones payroll?

  12. RINO Hunter says

    Comment 59 by veritas is absolutely on the money – it is Hunt’n season.

  13. Hmmm. Flake or Franks for governor? Don’t forget that Flake’s favorite dictator is Fidel Castro and he loves open borders, and Franks, bowing to pressure from the beltway crowd, cast the deciding vote to give us that boondoggle prescription drug law.

  14. What does Castro have that any American should worry about these days? Castro probably is hoping that Flake’s efforts to open Castro to US tourism and trade fail. I agree with Jeff Flake that we should leave restrictions of freedom to the Cuban government and not the US government.

    I agree that Franks is no inspiring candidate, there are worse but there are also plenty better. Ron Gould.

  15. I read somewhere that the budget increased from something like $6 or $7 billion to $10 billion under Napolitano. Does anyone know where the large increases in spending occurred? What programs saw the increases? The only one I know of is all-day kindergarten.

    Two wishes–

    (1) The legislature would have done and would do more oversight of the Executive Branch re how efficient/effective the individual agencies are in executing the laws passed by the governor/legislature.

    (2) I have a close friend who has taught at the U of A for a long time and he has had MANY students in his class that had no business being at college–either they were not studying OR they lacked the basic skills needed to succeed at the college level. The state universities should set the bar much higher for admission–that would reduce enrollment and save the taxpayers from having to subsidize non-performing students.

  16. nightcrawler says

    First off to ron post number 23: Relax and the spelling and grammer on the boards, we all get the gist, no need to parse the language..He is an example..

    phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid, aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.


    Have here of the notion of “overhead absorption”. The butts need to be in the seats in order to cover the fixed expenses of the university. Each student is not simple a variable expense. The real issue with your post is the lack of quality instruction and social promotion at the K-12 levels, which by the way are not being addressed by cutting resources to the schools.

  17. nightcrawler – kevin was challenging my logic – i was questioning his….

    Your ilustration proves what? That we can make sense of the gobblygook coming from all corners on the state of the state budget?

    Your illustration might also prove that we really don’t need education. Have you seen the ‘approximate spelling’ approach that is now taught in our elementary grades? This probably explains why I get such terrible spelling at the college where I teach.

  18. Veritas Vincit says

    Maybe before we put the cart in front of the horse (speaking of candidates for 2010), we should consider pulling the cart together? The absolute last thing we need in 2010 is yet another Democrat in the Governor’s office.

    Think about it. Who could or will the Dems put up in 2010? The idea of that individual becoming governor should scare the common sense back in ya!

    That said, a tax hike at this point in time is a recipe for disaster. Its bad enough that the Obamanation is seriously considering increasing the taxes on the most productive sector of the economy (for which this recession will go depression) – but we don’t need to do it here.

    Then again, what’s a governor to do? You can’t spend money that isn’t there – the last governor exhausted that option.

    Cut spending?
    Increase income?
    Increase debt (which requires an increased income)?

    … maybe we should try the Washington plan and print more money?

  19. Most people are getting tax cuts under Pres. Obama’s plan. The federal government can print money, as you say, but the states can’t.

    According to Keynesian theory, during a recession (especially now, when monetary policy won’t work: interest rates are effectively zero but nobody’s borrowing or lending so the Fed is “pushing on a string” – unlike in previous recessions, when the Fed could ease by lowering rates), a government should run deficits (for a while) and cut taxes.

    So there is actually a liberal (Keynesian) case that this is the worst possible time to raise taxes. (It should be done during boom times and expansions.)

    As one economist said, the states (except Vermont, I think) have to balance their budgets and thus we have “fifty Herbert Hoovers.”

  20. Ron. Thanks for the challenge. I like being challenged and don’t for a minute think I don’t take it seriously.

    As far as uniting together to face a Dem opponent…it’s time for the GOP leadership to admit other voices to the table given they’ve so drastically failed in ways too many to count. The budget is where it is because a Republican legislature constantly caved to a Democrat governor. And, do we really need to bring up the failure of the Presidential election.

    I’m saying business as usual in the Republican Party in AZ or elsewhere isn’t going to work and it is foolish to think that we are going to be in a good place in supporting a governor that wants to raise taxes during difficult economic times.

    I know some have called for specifics on how to change the budget without tax increases but even when specifics are mentioned they’re dismissed out of hand. How about sitting down at the table and really going over the budget with a fine tooth comb and making the hard decisions even if that means you have to show integrity by stepping aside to let someone else take your office and place when the consequences of drastic cuts come calling? But, that sort of altruistic community behavior is not normally built in to Republican political machines sadly. What we need are politicians with some amount of chutzpah to do the right thing.

    We haven’t always had such big numbers to deal and I submit that we still don’t need the billions and billions argued for here and elsewhere by the current GOP establishment. Shift the burden of proof where it belongs: square on those who want to raise taxes.

  21. I would never vote for Jeff Flake for anything after the lies he told about Russell Pearce. Flake was trying to get his brother-in-law to replace Russell Pearce. I don’t want someone in any office who with no integrity. And that’s what Flake has, no integrity. In my opinion, he’s the pits.

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