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Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Whip out the credit card yet again!

You know, I'm really interested in the personal finances of the Pawlenty family. Okay, so I'm not really that interested, but I do have to wonder if Pawlenty practices what he preaches. See, he preaches a lot of the old "buy now pay later" approach, also known as whipping out the credit card whenever the fancy strikes you. He did it again today, proposing to build a bunch of roads now and (somehow) pay for them later.

He has pulled this stunt before, also for transportation funding. On some level, he knows that transportation funding in this state is inadequate and our roads are falling apart, severely hampering economic growth. But he also knows that his BFF David Strom doesn't want him to raise taxes. So his only recourse is to propose a bunch of spending and close his eyes as to how to pay for it. That problem can fall to his successors.

This isn't the most terribly responsible thing to do, is it? I don't know about the governor, but I don't spend lots of money on big things without having a plan to pay for it. That's the responsible thing to do, so I won't burden anybody else with the load. "Anybody else" in this case means all the residents of Minnesota. If Pawlenty wants to increase transportation spending, which I totally agree with, he needs to be honest with people about how to pay for it.

And this nonsense about somehow using a form of arbitrage to explain it just doesn't work. This is taxpayer money, governor, and we don't follow the rules of Wall Street day trading here. Be honest. Be responsible. Don't stick the children with the bill for your spending.


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