Around Colorado 2/6/09

Low-Carb Food Stamp Diet

Face the State published a short article about my Low-Carb Food Stamp Diet. Diana Hsieh also mentioned it on her blog, as did Monica on her FA/RM blog. Walter in Denver also discusses the diet, writing, “My monthly grocery bill is often less than a food stamp allotment. I’m careful with my grocery shopping but not particularly miserly.”

Socialized Medicine — Again

“A plan to lay the groundwork for a Canadian-style, single-payer universal health care system in Colorado has been introduced by a group of Democrats. House Bill 1273, sponsored by Rep. John Kefalas, of Fort Collins, and co-sponsored by 18 legislators, would create a privately funded commission to study how a government-funded health care system could work. The goal is to send a single-payer bill to the General Assembly in 2011, he said.”

Here we go again…

Unemployment Welfare

“Colorado’s unemployment system… is simply under siege. This year, it is expected to face a record number of claims and to pay out a record $500 million to $600 million in benefits. … Reforms instituted a generation ago appear poised to keep the system solvent… Even so, what Colorado is facing is staggering when compared with recent years.”

Meanwhile, John Lott points out that paying people not to work encourages some people not to work — surprise, surprise.

Of course, those forced to pay into the system may rightly take money back from the system as a simple matter of justice and restitution.

However, people should not be forced to finance any unemployment system. Instead, they should be left free to prepare for hard times as they see fit. If taxes were lower, people could save money for a rainy day. Notably, in addition to restoring individual responsibility, this would also make more funds available for economic growth.


Interestingly, during the Great Depression, Republicans were the ones trashing the economy with protectionist tariffs. Today’s Democrats, apparently keen on combining the worst aspects of both parties, also promote protectionism.

Vincent Carroll writes about “Colorado’s two new Democratic senators, Mark Udall and Michael Bennet. Given a chance Wednesday to strip the Senate stimulus package of a highly provocative ‘Buy America’ provision, Udall and Bennet joined 63 of their colleagues in saying no.”

‘Stimulating the Welfare State’

Mike Rosen writes a nice critique of the stimulus package, pointing out that it’s largely about expanding the welfare state.

Meanwhile, Democratic governors are busy begging for their share of the loot.

In a blog post, David Harsanyi quotes a Washington Times article: “CBO, the official scorekeepers for legislation, said the House and Senate bills will help in the short term but result in so much government debt that within a few years they would crowd out private investment, actually leading to a lower Gross Domestic Product over the next 10 years than if the government had done nothing.” That’s because any “short term help” would be entirely artificial, not anything that contributes to true prosperity.

Harsanyi also points out that “in Obama’s trillion-dollar ‘stimulus plan’ rushing through Congress, nearly every sector of the economy will, at one point, have allegedly benefited from taxpayer bounty. Does this mean that all industries can be subjected to similar central control?” The Denver Post openly endorses political control of industry.

The so-called “stimulus” plan would in fact harm the economy into the indefinite future. It should be rejected, shred, torched, and buried.

Just Desserts

The Denver Post claims that colleges “deserve” gambling taxes. No, they don’t. They deserve to accept money only from voluntary contributers, whether students or donors. And casinos deserve to operate without being forced to finance welfare programs on a free and open market.

Legislature at Work

When the legislature is at work, you can rest assured that it’s trying to make other people’s work harder. For instance, the legislature is trying to further violate the right of free association by forcing employers to give employees leave for school events. Many employers already do so, and those who don’t typically have good reasons not to. The only result of the bill will be to marginally increase the cost of labor for some businesses, thereby marginally contributing to unemployment. Our economy suffers from a million such tiny cuts.

Meanwhile, “Speaker Terrance Carroll, a Denver Democrat, issued a memo Friday demanding ‘all lobbyists, governor’s staff, executive staff, visitors, Capitol staff and press’ show some respect by use representatives’ proper titles.”

Their proper titles? That could be an interesting exercise…