How to soften budget cuts: Get a state tax

As Americans, we have an irrational phobia of taxes. And as Washingtonians, we need to get over it.

We need a state income tax.

Here’s an example of why.

Our college is losing money because its state funding is getting cut. Our state is losing money for the same reason every state is losing money: Taxpayers are poorer, they are earning less, they are buying less, and they are keeping less.

This tax season, our federal government raised the federal tax a national total of 3 percent. Sure, anti-tax protesters may have thrown tea bags at the White House, yelling, “No Taxation Without Representation”. But if all goes well, that 3 percent will keep our nation from going into debt while trying to fix the worst economic crisis our nation has experienced in decades.

Most Washington residents are excited about the stimulus package, because we are logical enough to realize its necessity.

Most of us acknowledge, for example, that the Great Depression did not get better on it’s own; it wasn’t until President Hoover’s hands-off policy toward the economy was replaced with the massive, spendy, ugly, bureaucratic economic expansion policies of Roosevelt, that money in the U.S began circulating again. His efforts to rebuild the failed economy of the 1930s led to the government purchase of factories, the creation of huge infrastructure projects, and the use of federal money to create jobs.

In the Depression, success was found in rebuilding rather than cutting back.

Today, the state is forcing BC to lay off employees and cut funding to its’ worker retraining program. Cutting labor may look like a good way to slim the state budget down, but losing jobs is equal to losing revenue. Unemployed people can’t buy much, and they sure aren’t going to be paying much in taxes.

Will the state of Washington ride on D.C’s coat tails, trying to get federal money to fund state projects? Or will they do what the federal administration did -risk the soggy tea bags, and ask taxpayers to help fix their state government?

Olympia, give us a state tax. We have services local to our nation, and we pay for those. We have services local to our state, and these don’t run on good will alone.

And tax-payers: If you are still doubtful, if taxes still gives you the heebie-jeebies, think for a moment about what those dollars you’re asked for yearly really are.

Taxes are a yearly fee to pay for roads, highways, law enforcement, fire departments, schools, state universities and colleges, military representation and protection, state representation, and a handful of other services. I couldn’t pay those out-of pocket, and I wouldn’t want to.

Washington Residents, don’t be like the tea-baggers.