Tuesday, March 11, 2003

Just wondering if anyone saw the governor's speech last nite.

He looked tired and unhealthy, but his speech was well delivered and fairly inspiring. The "family budget" metaphor brought it down to earth and went a long way to suggesting that we are all in this together.

It's strange how the Highway Fund isn't playing a major role in the new budget. During the tax protests, all the tax-revolters would have you believe the Highway Fund was the ultimate budget-patch. It's only amounting to 19 percent ($66 million) of the total cuts. Fifty-eight percent ($207 million) is coming from Departmental Cuts, with the lion's share coming from Higher Education ($102 million). None of these numbers mean very much to me though. It's all theoretical until people start losing their jobs. There's a strange vibe though, that state jobs aren't "real" jobs, like in private corporations.

I wonder how Sundquist's administration is going to go down in the history books. In addition to the budget mess and the tax fiasco it looks like he's in pretty deep doo-doo for
old-fashioned back room deals.

It seems to me that he got to the end of his term and just went ape-shit, playing golf and ignoring the state's business. I find it ironic that it takes a democrat to clean up the budget mess created by a republican -- but when you think about it, that's what Clinton had to do. I guess we'll also have to wait for a democrat to fix the economic problems caused by the Bush administration -- unless, of course, the war fixes everything. That'd be great. It really sucks waiting for that to happen, though. I'm tired of hearing there's a "hiring freeze," until the economy is more stable. I'm tired of property values dropping. I'm tired of gas prices going up. I can't wait until Bush wins this war and everything is all better like when a democrat was president.

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