Friday, March 13, 2009

Texans Sacrificed To Perry's Ambition

I have to wonder if Rick Perry is living in the real world. Yesterday, he was bragging about the Texas economy and said, "I would tell my friends in Washington that if they want a blueprint for how to get the economy back on track, look at Texas." I don't know what rock he's been hiding under, but he obviously either doesn't know or is trying to hide the truth about the economy here in Texas.

According to the Texas Workforce Commission, the unemployment rate is 6.8% in Texas and rising. Many economists expect it to be over 8% before the end of the year. There are 26,000 new unemployment claims being filed each week, and the state could lose 300,000 jobs this year.

Maybe Perry's corporate buddies are doing well this year, but the same can't be said of the Texas economy in general or the situation ordinary Texans are facing. Texas is not yet in as bad shape as a few other states, but it is sliding fast into serious trouble.

That's why it is troubling that Perry yesterday refused to accept over $550 million in stimulus funds to help the unemployed. Especially in light of the fact that the state does not have enough in it's unemployment fund to last the whole year.

Add to this the fact that this is money that would have to be spent since the unemployed can't afford to save the few dollars they manage to get. That means there's $550 million that will NOT be spent boosting the Texas economy (with each one of those dollars passing through multiple hands). That money could have been a real boost to the state's economic well-being.

But Perry doesn't care about Texas or it's citizens. The only thing he cares about is his own re-election in the 2010 governor's race. He faces a serious opponent (Sen. Hutchison) who is currently leading him in the polls. He's counting on his ultra-right-wing base of Republican voters to carry him through the primary (like Rush Limbaugh's ditto-heads).

He knows the ultra-right wants badly to see the economy worsen and President Obama to fail, and he's willing to help by throwing Texas into the economic garbage bin. He's putting his own ambitions above the well-being of Texans, which should be no surprise since this is not the first time he's done it.

We must remember his vile actions when we go to the polls in November of 2010.


  1. It would seems that South Carolina, and now Texas, will serve as control groups of a sort for the stimulus plan.

    If the economies of SC and TX tank, while the rest of the country recovers, we'll know that the stimulus was effective. Conversely, if SC and TX thrive while the rest of the country suffers, we'll know that the stimulus was counterproductive. Finally, if all the states suffer equally (or thrive equally), we'll know that the stimulus will have had little, if any, effect.

    Due to the nature of the stimulus plan, we may not know for sure by 2010; we may have to wait for the long run. But as John Maynard Keynes once said, "In the long run, we are all dead."

    As I approach my 59th birthday next week, I'm beginning to think no matter what happens, the recession (depression?) may just outlive me. That's why I'm continuing to take the seven flights of stairs to work, go for long walks, and watch what I eat. The odds are good that I'll never be able to retire.

    And to tell the truth, I'm not sure that I would ever want to.

  2. The unemployed are out of the economy because they don't get money from the stimulus package to participate in the economy. They can't shop, they can't help any independent businesses, they can't use the money to help others by spending the money.

    It is the stupidest, shortest sighted, ignorant, foolish, exercise in voting I have ever witnessed. It has all the rhetoric of keeping the federal government and the yankees out of Texas. What a moroon!

    May Republican businesses fail, too. It rains on the just and the unjust alike. Perhaps when enough Republican businesses fail because the unemployed can't buy a donut or a pot or pan or get new siding for their houses, we can rethink this keep the feds out of our businesses. Republicans should support the stimulus package. Because it benefits their damn little shops and stores. But if they don't want the money, let them have the consequences, good and hard.

  3. Great to hear from you again, Jaye.


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