Sunday, April 18, 2010

Mega Millions Comes to Arizona - and It Won't Solve the Deficit!

by Pa Rock
Citizen Journalist

The state of Arizona continues to try and avoid bankruptcy by placing more and more of the state's monumental deficit on the backs of the poor. Today the state welcomed its second multi-state lottery, Mega Millions, to it's grand scheme for raising money in a way that won't negatively impact the rich. Mega Millions joins Powerball in separating money from the suckers who dream of one day being rich - but realistically know that can never happen through the stacked economy under which we all suffer. A standard three or four-job family is lucky to be able to buy groceries and pay the mortgage, let alone indulge in any luxuries. But a dollar or three invested in the lottery at least buys the opportunity to daydream about what it would be like to be suddenly rich.

The lottery sells dreams, nothing more. Watch the dreamers at the convenience stores scratching tickets. Occasionally they uncover a two or five-dollar win, but they always use that money for more tickets, searching in vain for the big payoff. It's a sucker's game - and it primarily impacts the poor.

Arizona is also engaged in a massive political push to pass a temporary sales tax, again, a tax that targets the poor. The rich may only need to spend ten percent (or less) of their income on consumables each week - things upon which sales tax is paid, but the poor are likely to spend most of their income on things that will bear the sales tax. Sales tax is very regressive and a most unfair way to raise revenue.

So the plan is to have the poor pay the state's way out of deficit spending. But our legislature is hellbent on making a bad situation worse. They recently passed bigoted legislation that forces city and county police into being de-facto immigration officers, and makes being brown legally suspect. The result of this nonsense will be more lawsuits and an even bigger drain on our state's treasury - not to mention taking the police away from real crime.

And, as of this week, it is no longer necessary to have a permit to carry a concealed weapon in Arizona - hence no training and no background checks either. These sand rats are scary enough even when they have to jump through all of the legal hoops to carry a weapon, but now they will make the deranged hillbillies from Deliverance look like college professors and business executives. I can't imagine any tourists wanting to bring their loved ones into this Arizona craziness - so this will assuredly mean less tourist dollars.

Proposition One, the sales tax measure, will go down in flames, and gun crime will go up. Schools will close, and tourists will stay away. And one day soon Arizona will capture the honor of being the first state in the nation to officially go bankrupt. The only way that won't happen is if the state's politicians actually develop the gumption to lead, and amaze us all by passing some real taxes - taxes that impact those with money - taxes on property and income. Anything less is a prescription for failure.

The next best option will be annexation by New Mexico - but I doubt that they would have us!

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