Obama money flap overlooks the real problem

A day after we agree with The State, we find ourselves puzzled by their call for citizens to pummel Governor Sanford with calls and emails to protest his intentions to turn down federal funds intended to shore up the state budget:

Mr. Sanford could eliminate these problems by simply requesting federal funds. He has until Friday to do so, and we all need to do our best to make that happen:

• Individuals and groups must stop treating Mr. Sanford like the crazy uncle in the attic and let him know they expect him to start acting like a governor. Call, write, e-mail him; rally at the State House, at the Governor’s Mansion, across the state. Demand that he request the federal funds.

• Legislators need to find a face-saving way for him to change his mind, in case he cannot bring himself to admit that his actions are reckless and irresponsible.

We don’t know whether Mr. Sanford cares what the public thinks, but one thing is clear: He will not be persuaded by people who do not make their voices heard.

It's disappointing that The State couldn't have taken a more thoughtful look at the underlying causes of this problem.

It's time for a honest look at the root causes of the state budget shortfall. The revenues which fund the state budget are cyclical: when the economy goes up, revenues grow at a rate often faster than growth, and when the economy slips, revenues tend to sink faster than the rate of contraction. The reckless spending and budget growth of recent years spent billions of dollars of surplus money that could have been banked away for a rainy day.

State budgets under Governor Campbell and Hodges suffered greatly during recessions, and a lot of the legislative players around now were around then. They should not be surprised at the current turn of events, nor should they be attempting to pin all the blame on Sanford. While it's important to find a resolution to the current situation, it is also time for all concerned to make a solid effort to rein in spending growth and plan ahead for future downturns. Anything less is inexcusable.

Those who are concerned about the current budget crisis, whether they support or oppose Sanford's actions, should demand that steps be taken to follow a more fiscally responsible course in the future, and that everyone in the legislative process work together to chart that course.

3 Response to "Obama money flap overlooks the real problem"

  1. west_rhino 31/3/09 09:03
    Il' Etat did not like the establishment of a state reserve fund when Campbell pushed it AND, as I recall Herr Leatherman wasn't too fond of setting aside state surpluses either...

    Earl, you've thrown down the RINO gauntlet about the blogland as you've seen fit, where do you stand on "spend like a Democrat, though elected as a Republican" legislators? What does the hypocrisy of their spending and some legislation say to a mind numbed electorate?
  2. MG 31/3/09 15:05
    I aint for no bailout. I say let them sink. Now for the money Congress or should I say Obama, Nancy and Harry is gonna spend. The way I see it if SC does not take it someone else will. We still are going to be stuck with the bill.
  3. Anonymous 1/4/09 11:14
    For once though, it is a half funded mandate which will become an unfunded one as it is squandered, no doubt to aid cronies as the AIG $$$ for donations did from Chris Dodd...

    what did DeTocqueville say about voting largesses?

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