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Same answer 2 years later

I tripped over a response I wrote exactly two years ago in my run for governor of Idaho. Interestingly, I don’t think I’d change a thing in it. The problem has become apparent to most folks who can fog a mirror, but the solution still escapes them. Here’s to hoping they will get it soon.

What are your feelings about Idaho’s economy and what should the state do to improve it?

Idaho’s economy is booming. We have people pouring into the state flush with cash from the sale of their homes in California, Carolina and parts in between. The Treasure Valley is alive with the sounds of earth movers and nail guns. Construction dollars enrich the lives and pockets of retailers selling boats and boatloads of doo-dads from China. Politicians with pockets full of tax dollars promise spending programs to suit every voter they can imagine.

Who wouldn’t love this?

I don’t. I say the time for belt tightening, particularly in government is now.

The “permanently hot” housing markets in the big-ticket places has died. Those markets are full of “product”, prices are dropping and still sales are not happening. The ripple effect will be felt here soon.

China’s 1.3 billion people are wanting more oil as are India’s 1.1 billion. We are competing for oil on an international market while Congressional spending has weakened the value of American dollars. Put another way, our fuel prices are about to climb significantly, putting another hit on Idaho’s economy.

Anyone making or believing promises based on business-as-usual will fail to deliver. What we need now is leadership with an understanding of the free market. We can no longer allow a handful of central planners to take money away from those who earned it and spend it on feel-good, sound-good projects.

Continuing to spend HALF of our property tax and state tax revenues on schools cannot continue. Increasing sales taxes to provide even more spending is a horrid idea. Tax deductions to stimulate private schools is the only way we will get educational improvements, diversity in education AND reduce costs.

Replacing private adult trade schools with taxpayer funded junior colleges is an awful idea. Forcibly taking money from all, to build schools for a few, while displacing existing private schools is a perfect example of socialist central planning. Stop it now. This is the wrong direction to take our country.

I will not promise to do magical things nobody can deliver. I will not interject my feelings about what is a fair wage into what should be a private discussion between someone who wants a job and another who has a job to offer. I won’t build any more government-monopoly schools to house an educational system managed by politicians. I will resist displacing private trade schools with taxpayer funded junior colleges.

I will move the government of Idaho back in the direction it came from: one constituted of men to assure the rights of life, liberty and property.