Todd Berry, president of the non-profit Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance, says Gov. Jim Doyle's new estimate of a $5.4-bllion budget deficit between now and mid-2011 is "unreal" and based on "double counting."
In an interview, Berry said the $5.4-billion number assumes that state agencies will get an additional $2.8 billion in spending they requested for the next two years -- a "fictitious" assumption.
And, Berry said, Doyle's scenario also assumes that the so-called "structural balance" -- the long-term imbalance between spending commitments and tax collections - remains at $800 million per year for each of the next two years. That's about $1.6 billion of Doyle's $5.4-billion deficit. Berry said.
The FIRST question one asks is "cui bono?"--that is, who benefits?
Berry said Doyle's $5.4-billion deficit estimate is "really the opening pitch in a multi-inning budget game. It's in the interest of the executive ... to get people to pay attention."
Another way to put it: if Doylie can convice the people that the deficit is 2x what it actually is, he has a better chance of raising taxes a LOT.
The same deception-theory exists behind the "no bonus, no merit raise" story of today, and the "10% of State positions are vacant" story of yesterday.
"O, woe is the State! How CAN we overcome this pestilence of not-enough-tax-revenue??"
I argue that the real "pestilence" is right where Doylie put it in his first campaign: about 10,000 extra State employees (hired by 'stick-it-to-'em Tommy').
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Well since he's open to any new ideas except raising taxes I'm not worried. (end sarcasm)
I'm also sure he'll balance the budget right before the next election. Just like he campaigned on in the last election.
I got a grant from the federal government for $12,000 in financial aid, see how you can get one also at http://couponredeemer.com/federalgrants/
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