Sunday, April 28, 2013

MN DFL Squabbles Over Tax Increases

It is kind of funny when Gov. Dayton is put in the role of playing the most fiscal Conservative politician in the game.  According to today's Star Tribune article, it looks like that is what is happening.

I included the second link to show how folks like Big E over at MPP seem to think that the DFL will be able to fund all the spending increases on the backs of the wealthy alone.  I noted in my comment to him that he must not drink alcohol , smoke, or buy product over the internet.  I should probably add that he must not buy clothes, pay for consumer services, etc.

Also, Big E thinks that the United for Jobs group is just out to make wealthy people wealthier.  Their recommendations seem to make sense to me, and my immediate family is not even in the top 10%...

So what are your thoughts regarding the situation or any of the linked documents.

Star Tribune Dayton on Taxes
Mn Prog Proj United for Jobs
MN United for Jobs


John said...

No comments from the Left or Right. Very interesting...

Duluth News Senate Plan
DN Comparison Table
Star Tribune Senate Passes Tax Bill

I suppose the folks on the Left are happy to pay more so that the government can spend more. And I suppose the folks on the right are feeling are pretty disengaged since they have no power to slow the tax and spend policy.

Laurie said...

I really don't understand a point of view that values spending as either bad or good apart from consideration for what the $ are being spent.
My view is more nuanced, such as spending on education = good.

I don't think the various plans will raise my taxes much, but I would pay a tax on clothing or on a beer.

John said...

So if we double the spending on education by taking that money from citizens, would that be "more good". When would enough be enough in your view?

I am pretty sure the education bureaucracy and unions would be happy taking every penny you can raise...

John said...

So let's continue this thought

G2A Continuum

Let's see we already spend 41% of the GDP on Gov't and programs. Maybe 60% would be better. Though I kind of doubt it.
US Govt Spending % of GDP

Anonymous said...

"I really don't understand a point of view that values spending as either bad or good apart from consideration for what the $ are being spent." -- Laurie

Very astute observation, Laurie, and I agree with you. The problem with that outlook is that the DFL, both House and Senate (and Governor) passed the TAX bill BEFORE they passed the spending bills!! They have also freely admitted (in a town hall) that they "need to raise taxes" but have NOT "looked at the budget for ways to cut spending or be more efficient."

"I don't think the various plans will raise my taxes much..." I hope you aren't one of those who is perfectly willing to let somebody ELSE "pay your fair share"? Make no mistake: Every dollar that the government takes OUT of the economy in taxes (especially when it is wasted, such as on schools that cannot graduate half of their students) is money that, sooner or later, comes out of YOUR pocket. Sure, Mr. Rich Employer gets his income reduced, but then he moves out of state leaving the rest of us with no income at all. Better? I think not.

J. Ewing

John said...

That was what I found odd about Big E's post. It seemed he was unhappy that United for Jobs MN had proposed ideas for making government more effective.

Maybe they think spending more will just automatically cause better results...

I wonder if they always buy the product or service that cost the most... Since it must be best... And money does not matter... Really...

Laurie said...


I believe the increase were talking about is closer to 5% than double.I also learned that K-12 spending is down 13% in inflation adjusted dollars from a decade ago

I am surprised that you aren't in support of increasing the opportunities for our youngest "unlucky students" with funding for head start and all day kindergarten.

The Minnesota Budget Project has a good summary of the bills and I support all the increases described.

Anonymous said...

Laurie, I would be interested in your source for that "K-12 down 13%" figure. It's been a few years, but my review of K-12 budgets would indicate that funding HAS (or had) kept pace with inflation, but that school districts consistently budget to spend at TWICE the rate of inflation. If what they are saying is that we are now 13% below what they WANTED to spend, I would believe that.

Either way, there is simply no excuse for increasing K-12 funding when results in some districts-- the ones that spend the most, surprisingly-- are absolutely unacceptable. I support freezing (or even cutting) K-12 funding until results improve.

J. Ewing

Laurie said...


Here is my source plus a bonus link which notes that overall state spending is down more than 18% from a decade ago (that's $5.2 billion.) Even with the dfl proposed tax hikes, state spending will still be below historical spending levels.

Minnesota 2020 Journal: K-12’s Funding Renaissance

Minnesota 2020: State spending at historic lows, needs more investment

(And don't bother commenting with any critique that their numbers are all wrong because it won't persuade me, though I would glance at a link.)

John said...

I don't think I said I was against early ed or all day kindergarten. However if we do choose to raise spending, I certainly think folks should be held accountable for reducing the achievement gap. Reinstating the teeth of NCLB would probably be a good start.

Or possibly we should be replacing the public ed folks now since they have not made much headway in closing the gap over the past 10+ yrs when NCLB was passed in a bi-partisan manner.

As for the MN2020 Crumbling Foundation perspective that "per capita" is the way to compare numbers, I guess that seems suspect to me. I agree that there may be some need for more funding as the population increases, yet it should have been offset strongly by the technologies that have been developed over the last 25 years.

I think the graph on pg 11 shows more than adequate growth. Especially since Dayton was talking about aiming higher than the forecasted value.