California taxpayer raid: “Think of it as a forced, interest-free loan…”
Oh, yes: that makes it all better.
(h/t: Instapundit) California’s come up with another way to ensure that when the state finally crashes, it’s really going to crash:
California to withhold a bigger chunk of paychecks
The amount goes up 10% on Sunday as Sacramento borrows from taxpayers. Technically, it’s not an income tax increase: You’ll get the money back eventually.
Reporting from Los Angeles and Sacramento – Starting Sunday, cash-strapped California will dig deeper into the pocketbooks of wage earners — holding back 10% more than it already does in state income taxes just as the biggest shopping season of the year kicks into gear.
Technically, it’s not a tax increase, even though it may feel like one when your next paycheck arrives. As part of a bundle of budget patches adopted in the summer, the state is taking more money now in withholding, even though workers’ annual tax bills won’t change.
If I ever become a convert to Objectivism, it’ll be because of California: that state seems determined to ignore the elementary fiscal rule of Don’t spend money that you don’t have, you idjits. I realize that this sounds like a simplistic solution to what is a very complicated problem, but so is Robbing Peter to Pay Paul. Except that in this case it’s more like Robbing Peter and Paul while telling them that they’ll be getting the money back. Unless they need to make the robbing permanent. Which they probably will, because they got away with it in the first place, right?
I admit that this is harder to memorize.
PS: Another bit of elementary fiscal wisdom: It is absurd to think that you can transfer 1.8 billion in funding from things that generate wealth (business) to things that consume it (government) without it having an effect on the larger economy. I mention this because said wisdom has unaccountably eluded everybody defending this policy as being not being all that bad.
PPS: Hey, do you know that a top Californian state official – Lt. Governor John Garamendi – is actually within the reach of at least one CD’s worth of voters? He is, he is. If you live in CA-10, by all means: show your disapproval by voting for David Harmer on Tuesday.
Crossposted to Moe Lane.