Friday, October 03, 2008

Different, Yet More of the Same

The New York Elitist Times had readers submit debate questions for the VP candidates. Here's one from an Alaskan:
Governor Palin, as we both know, Alaskans are a special breed. I grew up in Fairbanks, a few hundred miles north of Wasilla. I was proud to live on the frontier, far from civilization. Like many Alaskans, I lived in a log house on a dirt road, with no city water, sewer system or trash collection. We didn’t get much from our government, and we didn’t want much.

I love my frontier state, but the first thing I learned when I moved to the Lower 48 was how unlike the rest of the country Alaska is. How would you govern America when as mayor and governor, you hardly had to provide basic public services? In Wasilla, less than a tenth of the town is connected to the sewer system.

Alaska’s economy runs on oil proceeds — we don’t even pay income tax. And despite our disdain for Washington, we are given hundreds of millions of dollars from the federal government each year. How would you handle our financial crisis when you’ve never had to balance a budget while tax revenue fell?

She bragged repeatedly last night about all she did to cut taxes, etc. as mayor. She barely had to provide services to residents, the oil companies are the major revenue source so why the hell NOT cut taxes? Here's why...

Palin neglected to mention that she took office and inherited a balanced budget. As mayor she raised the town's sales tax, increased spending by 50% and left office with the town of Wasilla $20 million in debt.

Alaska might be different, but that fiscal policy sounds familiar...

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