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  • government waste

    There are several of us talking about the grant programs and taking our tax money for these. I have heard on the news of some projects as unneeded dams, airports, control towers that are brand new and have to be rebuilt before the airport can be opened. also, some buildings built and roads so that Congressmen can have something named after them. I know that there are some in Texas that i am researching. if this spending could be cut out, billions for farmers and the fire service and other programs that are needed could be funded with no strain to the taxpayers. Most of it could be by local government because more money would be availble at the local level. Do yall have such projects in your area?

  • #2
    Hi Larry -

    It really doesn't matter if we have those types of projects in our areas, we're all paying for them!

    Pork barrel politics is alive and well. I personally want it ALL to go away. I don't think the federal government should be in the business of funding the local fire service, the local police service, local schools, local infrastructure improvements, and a whole host of other things that are better done locally.
    "Let's roll." - Todd Beamer, one of a group of American soldiers who handed the terrorists their first defeat.

    Joe Black

    The opinions expressed are mine and mine alone (but you can borrow them )and may not reflect those of any organization with which I am associated (but then again, they just may not be thinking clearly).

    Comment


    • #3
      Bucks,
      I have to put in my .02 worth. I agree with you, first of all, about the Federal government not needing to fund the local services. However, this is an area where we have either through default, lack of income, lack of resources, or just plain ole lack of interest have dropped the ball. Big time.
      Although the 10th amendment clearly indicates that powers are to be reserved to the state (local, municipal, county, etc) governments unless specifically GIVEN over to the federal government, what do we do about funding without having a high tax rate (commensurate with the defense budget of third world countries!) being levied on our local govts?
      As the federal government has come in and funded various programs and administered many, many "good" policies, all in the interest of our "welfare", we have yet to see any collective quality of life improvements, especially from those the government was here to "help". So, do we really need government help? No. But we don't have the dinero we need to operate. I don't have any magic answers to this problem myself. I know things should be run much differently than they are, but how? I hope I didn't open up even MORE of a can of worms, but does anyone else have any ideas how to go about operating WITHOUT federal government thinking it has to interfere, I mean, help?
      Oklahoma Bound!

      Comment


      • #4
        Hi, huff -

        I have no problem whatsoever with local taxes being increased, on three conditions:

        1. the federal tax is decreased by the same or larger amount.

        2. the tax money collected locally goes to fund local services and projects.

        3. the federal government divests itself of funding for all projects outside its constitutional authority.

        I don't think that's so hard to understand, especially given the 10th Amendment, as you mentioned.

        The real problem is that many people in America are ignorant to the American process. They must have been sleeping in civics class, or had a communi...I mean, Democrat teaching them. How do we overcome this? Well, I think we are, little by little. Conservative philosophy is finding its way back into the mainstream. This stuff is on about a ten-year cycle, way I see it. It's about time for the conservative backlash to kick in.



        [ 08-17-2001: Message edited by: BucksEng91 ]
        "Let's roll." - Todd Beamer, one of a group of American soldiers who handed the terrorists their first defeat.

        Joe Black

        The opinions expressed are mine and mine alone (but you can borrow them )and may not reflect those of any organization with which I am associated (but then again, they just may not be thinking clearly).

        Comment


        • #5
          Hey Bucks,
          I wonder if they would have given the tax rebate collectively to a city and let the citizens submit ideas so that the returned money could be spent on something that all of the citizens could use. I can think of several projects such as new mains and sewer mains. Some equipment for our county hospital or EMS. collectively it adds up.
          Thanks for letting get on my soapbox.
          Larry

          Comment


          • #6
            Hi Larry -

            Then it wouldn't have been much of a tax cut, would it?

            Besides, I think you'd have a hard time convincing people to do that. I certainly wouldn't. I want my confiscated wages back!
            "Let's roll." - Todd Beamer, one of a group of American soldiers who handed the terrorists their first defeat.

            Joe Black

            The opinions expressed are mine and mine alone (but you can borrow them )and may not reflect those of any organization with which I am associated (but then again, they just may not be thinking clearly).

            Comment


            • #7
              Here's a couple of "anecdotal" examples.

              Back in the 50's and 60's, OK had a Senator named Kerr. There's all kinds of stuff around here named for him. There's a boondoggle of a ditch (supposed to be a canal) from the head of navigation on the Arkansas River (50 miles downstream from Tulsa) to a suburb on the east side (Catoosa). They called the terminal the "Port of Catoosa". There's a minor industrial area out there, but it's really never taken off (in 30+ years!). The canal is named the "Kerr-McLellan Navigational Waterway". Locally it's referred to as "Kerr's ditch" (or variations).

              The story is, at one time, if you ran into Senator Kerr on the street, and muttered "damn" because you dropped something, or stumbled, and he overheard you, his response would be "Dam? Sure, where would you like it!"

              The other is the use of Federal funds (matched at the local level) for interstate construction. There are three main political groups in OK. The rural residents and farmers (only a few 100,000's, but several congressional districts and lots of state house districts), the OKC metro area (more than 1 million residents, including suburbs, and split between two US Reps.) and Tulsa, with well under 1 million residents in the entire metro, and one US Rep (Steve Largent).

              Here's what happens. The state house allocates $100 million (for example) for road improvements. The feds match. Then the state does it out. $100mil for rural roads (gotta help them farmers get the crops in, despite the fact that most of them grow "oil"). $75mil for OKC congestion alleviation (widen I-40, I-35, I-44, and various "loops" and "bypasses") and $25mil for Tulsa. Sounds okay, except that Tulsa has one (1) interstate. I-44. And through the busiest part of town, it's only 2 lanes each way. It also cuts a bluff (crosses the Arkansas, then has to climb the hill) so it will be very hard to widen. We're talking eminent domain condemnations of businesses, then major blasting to cut the hill back so there's room for the road. So basically, $25mil won't cut it. So we (Tulsa) gets to work on other roads, and I-44 gets worse.

              Part of the problem here is local politics (the city is split into several districts at the state level - and they fight over "expand north" and expand south" views, and get cut out all together bcause they don't get together) but the other part is that the state house/senate are democrat controlled, and Tulsa habitually votes straight Republican. They can't win here, so they see no reason to pay us off.

              Comment


              • #8
                BucksEng91
                Hey man, you're scaring me. Your proposal actually makes alot of sense. You get the powers to be to implement same, and I'll make sure you get voted in as our new Mr. Pres.-----assuming you'd want the demotion!

                RJE
                Good to hear from you, and I can sympathize. I did wonder, as I zipped through Tulsa last time, "Why is this interstate so THIN going through here?" Well, since you explained it that way, it makes sense.

                Like so many initiatives in rural/community/metro departments that would do them all a WORLD of good---the resounding refrain echoes back with "NO, we would rather cut off our nose to spite the face!!!!!"
                I JUST LOVE POLITICS---you're danged if you do and danged if you don't.
                I would love to have these guys in office adhere to a very sound bit of advice:
                When you find yourself in a hole, first thing you do is stop diggin'!
                Oklahoma Bound!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Hey RJE!

                  You forgot to mention that the only way to get in and out of Tulsa from out of state without paying a toll is from the north on Highway 75.



                  Here's a thought about federal funding that I stole from The Federalist (in re federal funding of faith-based charities):

                  Instead of confiscating our income and diluting it through the federal beauracracy, why not just offer a tax credit for direct donations and let the people decide where to send it?

                  Probable answer: Because it wouldn't buy any votes in the next election.

                  [ 08-18-2001: Message edited by: KillerB ]
                  Asst. Chief Bill

                  International Order of the Fraternal Brotherhood of the Club

                  Somewhere in or near north central Creek County, Oklahoma

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    They do, but it's bas-akwards.

                    Apply yourself, make some money. Buy a house. Start a business. Get to where you can itemize on your taxes. Make a HUGE charitable donation to "shelter" some of your income from those same taxes. Now, if the donation is to a "faith-based organization", you've cut out the whole federal bureacracy, and got your tax break to boot.

                    Of course, you only get the benefit of the TAX on the amount you contributed. And if you make a lot of money - the contribution had better be HUGE. And then, after you make the huge contribution, you don't have all that money - do you?

                    Oh, by the way - if you claim more than 6% (approx.) of your income went to tax deductible contributions, that's a potential audit trigger! I typically give more like 15-20% - and get audited about 1 year in 3. Good thing I keep all the receipts!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Huff -

                      I accept your nomination, and hereby pledge to substantially reduce federal taxes and entitlement programs (it's what I call the "tough love" platform) and invest more heavily in the armed forces (which are DEFINITELY, UNQUESTIONABLY defined as a federal responsibility by the Constitution). By dint of the 10th Amendment, all services dropped by the feds may be picked up at the option of the states and localities that want 'em.

                      Otherwise, say bye bye to the NEA, the Education Department, and any other department that does not have a constitutional mandate to exist!!!

                      "Let's roll." - Todd Beamer, one of a group of American soldiers who handed the terrorists their first defeat.

                      Joe Black

                      The opinions expressed are mine and mine alone (but you can borrow them )and may not reflect those of any organization with which I am associated (but then again, they just may not be thinking clearly).

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Hey Bucks,
                        I was thinking mainly about pork barrel spending when i started this post. You got some good ideas about cutting out some government agencies. Any more that you think should be dropped? Also how about dropping all the free perks that all the congress people get, free haircuts and other goodies. I have to pay for every thing that i get.

                        I may not agree with every thing you say, but i may agree with some of the things you say. Larry

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I think you all are acing it on the issue of the feds taking taxes and then turning around and giving it to faith-based initiatives. I live 1/8th of a mile from my church; is it necessary for my contributions to their charity work to go to DC and then come back?

                          I tell you what, if I traveled that far there would be less of me when I got back, and you can figure there will be less of your money coming back, too.

                          Realistically, I don't think local fire protection is much of a federal role, but if they think local law enforcement is, then I want the fire service to be treated equally (not there yet, but moving...)

                          I have a hard time with large FD's with larger budgets getting large wads of FIRE $$ for dopey and wasteful projects when small FD's don't have $ for necessities, but I almost have a bigger problem with the fact that local citizens and govts won't support them.

                          Ideally, localities should fund their FD's adequately to require no further outside money. Same with law enforcement, schools, etc. As was said earlier, why not reduce fed taxes in an amt. equal to the increase in local taxes it would take to do the same thing with local bucks?

                          Just mulling this stuff around, my own opinions. Good to have somewhere for thoughtful discussion--didn't know how I miss college sometimes!
                          “I am more than just a serious basketball fan. I am a life-long addict. I was addicted from birth, in fact, because I was born in Kentucky.”
                          ― Hunter S. Thompson

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            For Bucks and Larry,

                            Here's my list:
                            National Endowment for the Arts
                            National Endowment for the Humanities
                            Dept. of Energy
                            Dept. of Education
                            Dept. of Health and Human Services - everything but the CDC and immunization programs goes.
                            Dept. of Housing and Urban Development (nothing but slum projects - AND highly susceptible to fraud)
                            Dept. of Agriculture - about 3/4ths of this one - see my posts in the "5 billion for farmers..." thread

                            I could go on, but my fingers are tired today!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Personally, I like the faith-based initiative...IF the money stays local.

                              But I think it would be much more beneficial to allow people to keep more of their own hard-earned money. Then they could decide to donate to the faith-based or non-faith-based charities of their choice.

                              EastKy - I agree with you on the law enforcement issue, to a point. The piece I don't agree with is the "they get some, so we should get the same" argument. NEITHER should get any funding from the feds. Local money, controlled locally, spent in accordance with local priorities by people with an intimate knowledge of the challenges and problems faced locally, is the way to go every time, for both fire and law enforcement.
                              "Let's roll." - Todd Beamer, one of a group of American soldiers who handed the terrorists their first defeat.

                              Joe Black

                              The opinions expressed are mine and mine alone (but you can borrow them )and may not reflect those of any organization with which I am associated (but then again, they just may not be thinking clearly).

                              Comment

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