Money will not solve our moral problems
The Way I See It
by DON WEST
The pecan trees are budding and the hummingbirds have arrived. Many local gardeners took a chance and planted early, betting against a late frost and that means we will have all the fresh vegetables to eat earlier this year than normally. March winds bring April showers, hopefully, it won’t be April floods but just enough to help all the flowers and fauna to a successful bloom and production.
We ate so many crawfish on Easter Sunday that I have begun to walk backwards, so God has blessed us with abundant crops thus far and we can pray that He will continue to smile upon our local farmers so that they may have a bountiful season. As the farmer prospers, so does our local economy and that is termed free enterprise. Sometime the politicians in Washington, and those voters who continuously extend their arms for the handouts, should take a step back and see what really drives the economy.
The welfare system has been in place since the 1940’s and we have spent in excess of $15 trillion dollars and the effects have been minimal. There are 47 million who live below the poverty line and the percentages continue to increase. Certainly this is an indication that throwing money at the problem is not the road to success. Less government intervention into the private sector gives business the opportunity to grow, creating more jobs and better benefits. Time and money lost in meandering through the web of red tape that bureaucracy burdens us with sucks the ability of businesses to achieve success.
I was happy to hear that Governor Jindal has rescinded his proposal to eliminate income taxes and replace the revenue with sales or value-added taxes. I am concerned that it may not be a viable solution. Certainly, the removal of some taxes should encourage business and industry to move to Louisiana, however, many businesses have come here before, enticed by tax incentives and have then left after the incentives have been exhausted. I would venture that the state will, under any new tax plan, continue to offer exemptions from sales taxes to prospective companies, which only puts a larger burden on individual taxpayers. Any proposal would also have to include provisions for low-income people, the elderly, and retirees to protect them – putting more burdens on those who will pay. The problem is that many retirees and senior citizens do not consume nearly as much as those who are working and raising families, therefore they will probably contribute much less to the economy than they do with income taxes, thereby putting even more burden on family incomes. Though I despise taxes, and am especially frustrated with the enormous variety of taxes and fees with which we are burdened, I fully understand that some are necessary to maintain national defense and infrastructure, both nationally and locally. Many could be eliminated with the elimination of useless government entities.
The other drawback to companies moving to Louisiana is the lack of skilled employees, which will not change with a new tax structure. That problem is rooted in an education system that continues to add programs to the bottom of the educational chain to save the usually “un-savable” instead of adding programs to inspire the achievers to greater heights. We cannot ignore those who want to achieve, but we also cannot continue to waste resources on those who refuse the opportunities to better themselves. We cannot and should not lay all the blame on the education system, for the problems begin in the home. Dysfunctional homes, marriages, and godless behavior are contributing factors to the overall problems. Moral decay permeates our society and all the dollars in the world cannot correct those problems.
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