The talking heads on the left will be spinning from Texas Governor Rick Perry’s proposal to give taxpayers back unused money from the state’s treasury. It’s not the size of the check a taxpayer might receive from the $1.8 billion the booming state has gathered in an arguable tax overrun, but the implied acknowledgment that citizens own their money and not the state. That seemingly harmless acknowledgment actually reflects quite revolutionary thinking in today’s political environment.
Reuters reports on the unusual proposition:
The Republican called for changing the constitution of the state, the nation’s second most populous, to allow the return of tax money to the people who paid it when the state brings in more than needed.
“We’ve never bought into the notion that if you collect more, you need to spend more,” Perry said in his state of the state address, which he delivered to a joint session of the Texas House and Senate. [...]
Perry has urged lawmakers to resist pressure to spend money freely despite a state forecast of a 12.4 percent increase in revenue available for the 2014-2015 budget compared with the previous two-year budget.
Unfortunately, since Washington’s politicians have guaranteed enough spending to last several generations, such a refreshing notion as giving taxpayers money back is unrealistic at the national level. But isn’t it a magnificent notion that one day in the future our great-great-great-great-great-great-grandchildren could get a letter in the mail from the federal government that said “keep your money, we don’t need it”?