Sales tax be damned

How NOT to run a business, or a state government
When revenues fall, only cutting expenses is sane

By Walter Brooks

Governor Deval Patrick signed the 25% increase in our sales tax, and if I was shocked by his action, it's really my own fault for thinking any politician had the moral fiber, the backbone, the raw guts, to stand up to the corruption, cupidity and flim-flam of Beacon Hill's den of knaves.

A one-party state legislature like Zimbabwe, Iran and the former Soviet Republics is an abomination for our state.

My family and I run three different businesses, and we've survived through several recessions by following two simple economic rules:

  1. when revenue is down, 
  2. you cut expenses.

We don't "like" to cut expenses, but if anyone's expenses are greater than their income, they go broke. It's that simple. Of course it's painful, but so is it painful for the nearly 10% of Bay Staters who are out of work.

If a business fails, its owners and employees stop paying state taxes and go on unemployment creating added burdens on an already reduced state budget. The 25% increase in expenses for most everything we buy makes the problem worse for everyone except our politicians who can ignore economic rules because we gave them permission..

The "right" thing for our pols to have done was to cut their own pay to demonstrate solidarity with their voters and make state government run on the money it was getting under present laws.

Here's what they did instead.

The Democratic dictatorship on Beacon Hill

Beacon Hill, the legislature and the governor, were faced with the same problems of millions of other U.S. businesses and individuals.

The state's revenue is less than it used to be.

Unlike you and me, however,  Beacon Hill doesn't have to follow your rules for what to do when revenues drop.

They simply raised your sales tax because they COULD.  And they have the power to do so because you gave it to them.

To my Democrat friends, I can only say their position on the sales tax is akin to what Samuel Johnson said about sex: "the expense is damnable, the position is ridiculous, and the pleasure fleeting."

If Governor Patrick was the man we thought he was, he would have vetoed that 25% sales tax increase even if he knew the Beacon Hill dictatorship could and would override him.

If you question the word dictatorship to describe our legislature, perhaps you should read the definition here:

dic⋅ta⋅tor⋅ship - noun
1. a country, government, or the form of government in which absolute power is exercised by a dictator.
2. absolute, imperious, or overbearing power or control.

That correctly describes our one-party legislature where the Democratic majority is overwhelming and there is no effective "loyal opposition" left.  Like Zimbabwe, Iran and the former Soviet Republics.

And YOU elected them.

Contact your state rep today about their vote on the sales tax: welcomes thoughtful comments and the varied opinions of our readers. We are in no way obligated to post or allow comments that our moderators deem inappropriate. We reserve the right to delete comments we perceive as profane, vulgar, threatening, offensive, racially-biased, homophobic, slanderous, hateful or just plain rude. Commenters may not attack or insult other commenters, readers or writers. Commenters who persist in posting inappropriate comments will be banned from commenting on