Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Impenetrable Brain of Dan Scripps

cross posted at Right Michigan

Michigan Rep. Daniel Scripps works in an office where the walls have been so well insulated from distractions that even a whisper of the loudest of outside events cannot seem to penetrate its fortress. In fact, all of Scripps' senses have been so protected from the human condition here in Michigan that if an unemployed and destitute constituent was tossed through one of Scripps' high energy office windows onto the representative's pristine plush pile carpeting, he could nonchalantly step over the bleeding body to the mirror without even breaking stride.

This is the consistent and dedicated vision we taxpayers look for in a wannabe career politician; a focus on the Utopian future so unblinking and unyielding that smacking the representative up side the head with a rotten carp wrapped in newsprint wouldn't get his attention.

Even if the carp had little impact on Scripps' world, it would be sweet if he took a moment to read the headlines in the newspaper that surrounded it.

Michigan has the highest unemployment rate among all of Barack Obama's 57 states at 15.3 percent. His district, while enjoying an unemployment rate below the state average, has about twice as many people out of work as it did a year ago at this time, and still suffers an unemployment rate higher than all other states but California, Rhode Island and Nevada. No wonder the big lug can focus so clearly on the things that truly matter.

Retail spending is down all over. GDP, if you ignore the deficit spending of the federal government, is down too. House values have dropped while foreclosures have risen. Many of those who have yet to rent an outbound moving van are simply waiting until they can unload their current house at a considerable loss, and all of this is taking place at a time when cherubic little Jeffrey's classroom has just gained four desks so that the district can lay off a couple more teachers.

Let's look at some basic economic truths.

People who are out of work do not spend as much money as they did when they were working. People who fear they might lose their jobs do not spend as much money as they did when they felt their jobs were secure. People who have solid jobs but fear the government is going to increase their taxes in a never ending quest to reconstitute diminishing revenues, do not spend as much money as they once did because they know they will need the money to quench big brother's thirst. With people generally pumping less money into the economy for these various reasons, the businesses that remain open contract farther causing more people to lose their jobs, nervous people who keep their jobs to spend even less, and the confidently employed to again cut back in order to satisfy that ever present glint in the tax man's eye. Wash, rinse, repeat as necessary.

This pattern is undisputed.

It is within this downward economic spiral that Dan Scripps is able to do his admirable best at focusing on peripheral items as if the tempest was occurring in someone else's back yard. How could he better prove such unbending focus than by suggesting a $145 million fee increase on citizens and businesses for waste disposal? The fee hike amounts to an increase of approximately 3500% with the additional dollars supposedly used by the state to promote recycling. (I don't guess there is any chance the state might abscond with some of these dollars and apply them to different causes like they did with the tobacco settlement money or the feds did with social security.)

In Dan's mind there is no consideration for unintended consequences. It will certainly not promote the extra burning of paper and plastics in burn barrels, will not result in many thousands of couches to be dumped in the back woods, will not increase the number of paper wrappers blowing like aimless tumbleweeds through the streets of Leland, nor will it help in the creation of countless unmonitored personal landfills, for those things are illegal!

Will more items be recycled? Yes. Will more items also be dumped along the highway and burned out back because the punishment for being a good little citizen just got a lot more expensive? Yes. Another thing to consider is how many more jobs will be lost when $145 million additional dollars are sucked out of the pockets of those who do business and live in this state.

Is now the right time to remove from struggling citizens and businesses another $145 million so that Dan Scripps can feel good about himself for attempting to nudge the rest of us toward a more perfect future? Or, would it perhaps be a better time instead for Scripps to walk outside of his fortified office to buy himself a non carp-stained newspaper with current events splashed across the front page?

If there was ever a time not to raise taxes, this is it. If there was ever a time to leave discretionary dollars in the pockets of citizens, this is it. If there was ever a time for politicians to begin to reflect on the total consequences of the edicts they pronounce from on high, this is it. And, if there was ever a time for the voters of Michigan to recognize what they have done by electing a candidate to office who would purposefully perpetuate this disastrous economy for a pet cause, this is it.

Trashing the Earth will have consequences for which this and all future generations will be forced to endure. These consequences, however, will be no more severe than the ones suffered by a state and country forever mired in the muck created by high minded politicians wearing exquisitely adorned blinders. What Scripps has managed to do here is to cook up a scheme that will not only promote unlawful dumping, but will at the same time manage to hurt everyday citizens struggling to make ends meet. Who knows, maybe with a little more time and effort Scripps can come up with a way to make his bill harmful to cute little wiener dog puppies.

I have a question Dan, and maybe you can bear with me on this. Why don't the overlords in Lansing make substantive changes to our state's oppressive business choking regulations before they start touting additional legislation that will make it even harder for businesses to recover?

Could it be any more obvious that the leaders in Lansing are either not keeping up on current events or have simply decided they can live with what is happening because it promotes their greater cause? There is no other plausible explanation for this sort of legislation at this point in history.

A carp wrapped in newsprint knows better.

1 comment:

John Arens said...

The modern Democrat party, at all levels of government -- local, state, federal -- have become so radicalized that no intrusion against normal, taxpaying citizens should be considered beyond the pale. Sadly, Mr. Scripps is no exception.

The Democrat party, of which the radical statist Mr. Dan Scripps is a member, has become the party of Government. That is, they no longer represent average Americans; they represent the public sector unions, the crony Capitalists such as government bond counsels or government retained attorneys or architects, and engineers, solid waste contractors, and spouses of government employees. They are the party of self-enriched entrenched bureaucracies. They represent the parasites that live off the hard work of taxpayers.

Thus, though Dan Scripps may be a perfectly fine man (and he most probably is), his politics are toxic to the future survival of Michigan. His world-view (as his focus on raising the cost of solid-waste disposal is a touchstone proves) is the vanguard-utopianism that has laid waste to Michigan. He and all other elected Democrats must be politically punished and defeated so that Michigan can begin the long, hard work of rebuilding our once great State.