By Brian Ochsner firstname.lastname@example.org "Three groups spend other people's money" Dick Armey likes to say: "Children, thieves, and politicians -- and all three need supervision." This is just one of Armey’s Axioms, and a sample of the wisdom he shared at a Greeley luncheon sponsored by Colorado FreedomWorks on Oct. 4. Representative Armey spoke with candor and common sense about government’s constant itch to raise taxes and spend more money.
The Ref C & D battle isn’t a new fight, he reminded attendees. Alabama and Oregon had similar votes on measures to raise taxes andor spending. Both were soundly defeated, against the odds, with help from FreedomWorks and other aroused citizens groups.
The same arguments we hear today about schools, jails and the public sector suffering were made in both states. Amazingly, none of these scare stories (the same ones you hear today in pro C & D ads) happened after the measures were defeated. Congressman Armey said that the legislatures in both states “magically” found ways to cut spending without adverse consequences.
He also said that politicians like to spend taxpayers’ money, and it’s almost painful for them to be fiscally responsible for a long period of time. That’s probably why Governor Owens, moderate Republicans and all Democrats are pro-C & D.
The biggest lie out there is that C & D will be an economic shot in the arm’for Colorado. Here’s what Winston Churchill said about a country (or a state) that tries to tax itself into an economic boom: "We contend that for a nation to try to tax itself into prosperity is like a man standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle."
You won't find that one in Armey's book of axioms -- but as different as the two men's political styles may have been, their grasp of this basic truth is identical.