Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Cahill's Bad Idea and his Website Specials!

I checked out Cahill's state website. There's some interesting stuff on there. I wonder if his slot machine is part of his Saving Makes Sense program, whereupon he teaches kids how to use basic monetary skills, such as opening a savings account -- and playing the cards right.

Then there's SMART Retirement & Beyond. In that program, there's a seminar that teaches state employees about getting ready for retirement. One of the available classes is "How to Get Free Watered Down Drinks (Just go to Mohegan Sun)."

What a lousy plan. For someone using state dollars to fund programs to teach kids how to manage their day-to-day finances, or people to save for retirement, this is just hypocritical. And stupid. We may as well light that money on fire, if this is the sort of teacher providing these lessons to kids. What good do those things do if we pass legislation that doubles the gambling addiction rate of this state - to the point that more than 5% of this state has a gambling problem? Do we really need that?

Governor Patrick's openly criticizing Cahill's plan, for good reason -not that the Gov's all that better on the subject. However, at the very least Governor Patrick is willing to admit the consequences of slot machines, something Cahill continually ignores. The fact remains that slot parlors have all the negative consequences of resort casinos - and none of the (rare) high points. They're just bad ideas - even worse ideas than resort casinos.

It's high time for some good ideas. Dump the slots - let's talk progressive income tax, at least for the top 1%. It may just bring in more revenue - and definitely with less downside. Why don't we have a single state-wide official talking about that in these disastrous times? Why not talk policy that will help the average citizen of the Commonwealth, instead of hurt them? It may take a while to pass such a measure, but this recession's only getting worse and will continue for the foreseeable future.

7 comments:

Middleboro Review said...

Ryan,

You've done an admirable job presenting Cahill's outstanding job performance.

Did you notice that one of the Retirement programs was being offered at UMass/Dartmouth?
Clyde Barrows is offering a class on "How to count out of state cars and determine casino revenues."

Anonymous said...

IMO - Cahiill is toast!

Anonymous said...

For me there's only one good thing about the economic meltdown and the budget problems. The Dems are in charge everywhere. Let's see them take care of their patronage jobs while the harsh light of reality shines on them. Its like the Gloucester policeman picketing out in front of city hall demanding more money so their ranks wouldn't be thinned, but the union wouldn't agree to postpone raises and re-examine their contract so some brothers in blue could be saved. The beast of big government is being starved, unfortunately with some serious collateral damage.

Quriltai said...

Heavens yes, a progressive tax. It's not a panacea, but rather a direct step that people will be surprised wasn't taken years before.

Anonymous said...

Quriltai,

Maybe I'm a dinosaur, but there was a ballot question that was soundly defeated.
Does anyone remember the arguments opposing it?
My foggy brain seems to remember something about not having limits on spending by legislators.

There are clearly problems that require addressing within the Commonwealth, they're highly overrated by the likes of Howie Carr.

Ryan, to your vocal right wing audience like anon 12:30 PM, it might be suggested that you work to inform yourselves about the issues and mobilize voters. I'm talking facts, not Howie's creative language rants.

When the unions or vested interests are the only ones supporting candidates both financially and doing the campaign grunt work, while you sit on the blogs and complain, you expect what?

There was a recent Republican Treasurer who never saw the corruption and scandal that surrounded him. When he ran for the office, he didn't even know what the job responsibilities were when asked in a public forum. Now he's bloviating. He seemed to have escaped jail himself solely out of stupidity. He really didn't know what was going on.

Patronage, hacks and corruption are equal opportunity employers to both parties. Let's not pretend otherwise.

Ryan said...

It was defeated... in 1994.

I think it's time to retry it. Things are vastly different than they were in 1994.

I think one of two options could pass with the right kind of campaign: link it to the federal rate, so people pay in proportion to the federal system, or just create a tax bracket that takes a stronger bite out of the top 1-2%.

Another thought is an estate tax. Other states have a small estate tax. Estate taxes are, in my opinion, every bit as intelligent and progressive (maybe even more so) than progressive income taxes.

Anonymous said...

Anon 7:18
I know corruption is inherent in both parties, it's just in Mass the Republicans are almost non-existent. So the Dems can stuff their bras without any opposition.
An estate tax? Ryan do you think when Sir Ted dies he would give any money to the state. The uber rich have their money hidden very well.

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