Sunday, February 13, 2011

GOP budget: We've stopped the digging, now let's ...

... start the fill. 

Speaker Kraig Paulsen presented a very informative summary of Republican 2012 budget over at The Iowa Republican.

Of course one is immediately, if hopefully unsurprisingly, struck by the significant difference between Republican governance and spending and Democrat spending and governance.  Even the most cynical of punditry has to admit that at least Republicans recognize the existence of a budget crises while Democrats are the crisis.  A failure to acknowledge and champion that distinction by anyone who believes in smaller government is merely exalting hypothetical perfection at the expense of tangible improvement. 

But, Mr. Speaker, recognize your strength and be heroic at a time the state needs heroes.   First, I am sure you and I and a majority of Iowans agree the state is in crises.  During the decade of my birth Iowa had ten electoral votes and soon we all know that number falls to six.  That means that Iowa's share of the national population has fallen by forty percent.  If that is not a state in absolute free fall what then must free fall look like?  Since the size, scope and expense of state government has grown exponentially during the same lifespan, only the truly uninformed or an ineducable biased partisan could possibly fail to conclude that more of the same is unlikely to change the results.

Second, the people are with you.  The public default opinion right now is less government, period.  The public wants change and the reality of what is before us if we fail to change is not foreign to the daily life of the average Iowan.  I know you've got people, hell I probably know the people themselves, talking about polls, and opinion and avoiding major conflict.  They are wrong, very wrong. 

Third, you have the position from which to redefine the dialogue.  The facts are on our side in a major way.  Education spending provides the best example.  In 2001-02 the certified enrollment in Iowa public schools was 494,290.7 and per capita K-12 spending was $5,122.  By 2010, the number of certified enrolled students had fallen by approximately 4.2 percent to 473,493.4 while per capita spending increased to $7,419, an increase of approximately 31 percent.  During that same time student performance at the K-12 public schools most assuredly did not improve by 31 percent. 

Measuring the priority government devotes to any one thing in terms of appropriated dollars has obviously failed.  People understand it when they hear it but they have to hear it much more frequently to overwhelm the contrary liberal message dominant in academia and the news and entertainment media and, thereby to change the governing philosphy of the last fifty years.  We need to create a conviction, not merely transitory opinion, that objectively small government is the primary solution to Iowa's domestic problems.

Now is the time to define a Republican metric that measures government in results produced not money spent.  The public gets it, that's why we won such a landslide last year.  Now is the time to educate the public, who now have only a vague notion of what's broken (but they are convinced its broken) and to educate to a degree and in a way we've never before attempted.  If we do, we defeat the Democrat's charge that Republicans deprive the public of services that the public, in principle, want (e.g.schools, law enforcement).

Now is the time to force Senator Gronstal to defend the indefensible, especially in any split Senate districts.  Let's give him our blue sky and then force every Democrat incumbent who has to stand in 2012 to defend the money down a rat hole in every local forum and media in their respective districts.  We send our top spokesman on to the small talk show in Ottumwa or Osceola, or wherever such media exist, to hammer the obstructive Democrat Senate every day. 

When the Dennis Black's or Jack Hatch's of the world dare to face the public we have our supporters organized on site to force the debate.  Let their union bullies get ugly at those forums, so much he better; the jack boot approach Mr. Murphy took last year certainly proves that point.    If we stick to the facts and keep it simple we will see significant movement in our direction.   Even if forced to compromise in the end we can force the dead end liberal progressive and union thugs to defend the logically indefensible on their way to the 2012 ballot.

We have the facts on our side.  We have public opinion on our side.  We have a whole new 21st Century grass roots media and movement mobilization on our side.  We just won a landslide.  Now we have the votes to force the Democrats to answer one simple question:  how much more will our state have to shrink before we reverse, not slow, the direction that shrunk our state by forty percent in only fifty years?


Anonymous said...

Glad to see you back again. You need to write more often.

RF said...

So the reason for Iowa's relative decline in power is the result of a supposedly bloated government? You have any actual evidence of that? - My guess is that Iowa climate, lack of ocean front, and significant ag productivity gains are much greater factors.