And why not? It's not their money.
February 6, 2002

When is comes to government budgets, the United States is the biggest spender in the world, and California is the biggest spender in the United States. But are they handling taxpayer money wisely? It certainly doesn't seem so, particularly when faced with recession.

California Governor Davis and the legislature blew the state's $12 billion surplus and put taxpayers on the hook for $43 billion more last year because of the questionable energy crisis, not to mention the expected $12.5 revenue shortfall over the next 18 months. Yet, California's education system and roads are among the worst in the nation.

Even with defense and homeland security spending because of the attack on America and the war against terrorism, President Bush, the Congress and partisan politics are failing to deal with taxpayer revenues prudently, and the prospects for doing so are slim to none. Indeed, a $2 trillion budget proposal, taking from this to pay that, and more $trillions in debt are certainly indications of irresponsibility as usual.

The clear and present danger of big, reactionary government is unbridled growth and the corruption, waste and abuse of power that goes along with it, not so different from the brief history of Enron and the hard lessons being learned from its collapse.

However, government and politicians learn nothing from failure because they always have sources of income, not unlike spoiled children who get everything without earning it and never learning the value of money.

A budget is supposed to be a plan to meet expenses in a given period, but the larger government gets, the less it knows the meaning of the words "plan" and "budget," or what reasonable limits are.

The Enron debacle should result in more informed investor control, and the many lessons from government fiascos should result in more informed voter control. It's called democracy...

Daniel B. Jeffs, founder
The Direct Democracy Center