posted on Dec, 2 2008 @ 02:49 PM
You know, IF some major regulations and requirements were enacted around the eligibillity and amount of federal bailout funds, I wouldn't be totally
opposed to the idea of the federal government lending some assistance to troubled states. Afterall, in many ways it is the fault of the federal
government that some of these states are in such a crunch. In fact, if you really get right down to it, the federal government's primary
responsibillity is to protect their member states from harm, including financial ruin.
Some of those aforementioned restrictions and regulations I'd want to see enacted first include:
1. Abolishment of "safe haven" policies in regards to enforcement of federal laws. If a state allows some of its counties or cities to harbor and
protect illegal aliens, drug dealers, or drunk drivers then they get nothing.
2. Elimination of non vital spending. IMHO, it is an abomination to see tax payer dollars wasted on things like art projects, cultural endeavors,
sports stadiums, and the like during a period in which the crappy economy is forcing budget cuts to important sectors like education, infrastructure,
and health care. It's called prioritization. It is irresponsible and childish for a family to not be able to afford new shoes for their barefoot
kid because they spent the shoe budget on tickets to a movie or a PPV... why then does it seem to be perfectly fine for governments to essentially do
the same thing? In times of great financial distress you cut the fat from infrastructure improvements, funding only what is needed to safely
construct a project, and leaving the frou-frou crap for a sunnier day.
3. Development of a rainy day fund. Every state should be required by federal law to maintain at least a 90 day working surplus which would cover all
required expenditures for that period and which can only be tapped into following either arbitration of a specially designated panel of federal
COngress or through a supermajority vote from the state in question's house of representatives. This fund would have some leeway for use of any
uinterest it generates, but it would also have to be added to to maintain the full 90 day supply as normal expenditures rise during fruitfull
4. Development of a biannually updated sustainabillity plan. This plan should include a prioritization of all state level expenditures. This goes
along with #5
5. Complete transparency of all expenditures AND prioritizations. The tax payer deserves the right to know where his dollars are going and not only
what they're being used for, but also what they're not being used for. For example, if $10 Mil is used towards beautifying the grounds around the
state capital building, yet the state's school districts fell short by $10 Mil, the tax payer should know this. This also goes along with #6
6. Accessabillity by the public for airing of grievances and demands for explanations. There should be an open and accessible outlet for the public
to demand their state account and explain every cent which is used. Our lawmakers should have to look the tax payer in the eye and defend using money
to fund projects of lesser tangible importance while taking funding away from more crucial programs.
If the states were required to ratify and follow these regulations, I'd have no problem with the federal government bailing them out. I certainly
have been opposed to the commercial bailouts, but seeing as how this would be more akin to a parent helping their own child, I don't t have the same
outrage over the idea as I had to the other bailouts.