Thursday, March 5, 2009

Thank You

The Oregon legislature passed the revised budget for the rest of the fiscal year. The hard truth is that this is a once in a generation (I hope) recession and some very difficult choices had to be made and some unsettling rejiggering of pools of money happened (raiding the cultural trust fund, for example). No one is entirely pleased with the result, but I think they largely got it right. But the bigger truth is that the state government is made up of intelligent, hard working elected officials and career bureaucrats who, for relatively modest compensation, make the very hard choices necessary for the benefit of all of us. And for that they deserve our thanks. This is not a fun time to be doing this job, and I admire them for what they do.

A representative democracy works when those we elect to serve us are allowed to do their jobs without undue constraint. I hope then that people begin to appreciate more the difficulty in having a government work flexibly and efficiently in such times when we continually tie its hands through referenda. I hope as well that the same bureaucrats and elected officials try as much as possible to avoid the plethora of special dedicated taxes that reduces flexibility in times such as these.

But most of all I hope we can get a permanent rainy-day fund passed to ensure the future health and prosperity of all Oregonians.

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