ADAM GREEN

Green: A reluctant yes

May 18, 2010, 8:17 PM | Updated: Jan 14, 2011, 4:24 pm

I voted yes on Proposition 100, but I’d be lying if I said I feel good about it.

It’s not that I don’t think the state can use the money;
no, I’m sure it can. I understand that without this added
revenue there will be cuts in many areas of the budget,
affecting services and education. I get that.

I’m also a person who is very much willing to pay more in taxes if I believe the money will benefit us all – I’m not selfish enough to sit here and say, “I have no kids, why worry about education?”

But does anyone really think this extra revenue is going
to help the children get a better education? Even when the economy was good, we were one of the worst states in the union when it came to funding education. Why now, when we are in a difficult recession, are we finally deciding to focus on that area of the budget?

Picture this: There is an organization that is important
to society and the economy, yet you rarely hear from it
about any issue. Suddenly the economy tanks and with it
goes the organization. Of course, this cannot happen, as
this organization struggling is bad for the rest of us.
So, the government steps in and gives them money to prop
them up, making sure the organization stays afloat on our
dime. Don’t you hate those bailouts?

The problem is somehow, some way, we got to this point.
Money was wasted like no other in a horrible business
model, and that won’t change just by throwing more cash at
the problem. Sure, this tax may help over the next three
years, but the very same reasons why they are in this
predicament will remain unless significant changes are
made. Does Proposition 100 just act as a band-aid,
delaying the inevitable crash that IS NEEDED in order to
finally restructure things in a way that benefits us all?

With my yes vote, though, I do have a few requests:

Please don’t waste any more money. I’m looking at you,
Governor Brewer, and the ridiculous decision to file a
frivolous lawsuit against the president’s health care
plan. Never mind the fact that it won’t win – even if
it did succeed, all it takes is ONE STATE to win the
lawsuit and the results will apply to everyone in the
Union. But, in your infinite wisdom, it was a good
decision to spend the money it will cost to file the
lawsuit (and don’t tell me it won’t cost taxpayers a
thing; we all know it will). You can’t reasonably continue
to cry to us about a deficit and then decide to play
politics with our money.

Speaking of politics, our government can not complain
about a lack of revenue and then pass legislation (right
or wrong) that brings on such a backlash that the state is
still losing money because of the decision. Don’t get me
wrong, the move by these other cities to boycott Arizona
is purely political as well, and it is really a
shortsighted idea. But if our legislature, and governor,
didn’t at least predict this may happen, then they need to
look in the mirror and us at other candidates in November.

Most of all, fix the system. Hopefully this tax (if it
passes) buys you a window to make the necessary changes
to make things better for the long run, because if you’re
asking me to approve another tax in 2013 then you can rest
assured you will have at least one fewer vote.

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