Saturday, March 02, 2024

The government is not better at spending your money than you are

by Terry Falk
| August 9, 2023 1:00 AM

I just came driving back from Seattle and the price of gas is very expensive in Washington. But interestingly, you go across the border to Post Falls, Idaho for 5 miles and the price drops 60 cents per gallon from Spokane and $1.30 per gallon lower than Seattle.

Washington has the highest prices in the nation, we’re told. So what is the Washington governor’s response? (It’s on the front page of last Friday’s Seattle Times.) Well, the governor says we should get those evil oil companies to pay more taxes and also we should punish them in other ways.

Any 101-level economic student can tell you that when you tax something you get less of it; and what happens when you get less of it? The price goes up. And do the companies pay the higher tax? No, it ends up in the end users’ prices. We pay it.

I was barely home from Seattle and I got an email from a very apolitical non-partisan investment company called Seeking Alpha. The new story they sent me? “Joe Biden moves to sharply raise the cost to drill on federal lands” — a 33% increase in royalty rates, for example.

The cost of living, including driving your car, has skyrocketed and exploded under this administration policies or what President Biden calls Bidenomics — they astonishingly also called it inflation reduction — which is also responsible for higher interest rates (Fed reserve bank attempting to mitigate this reckless borrow and spend ludicrosity) being approximately 3 percentage points higher than they should be, which singlehandedly has made housing largely unaffordable — especially when you combine with that all these state and federal tax dollars/programs making scarce the building goods and building trades, laborers’ costs and equipment — with no relief in sight for a long, long time.

Want to fix housing affordability and inflation? Elect government officials who actually have common sense economic understanding of how money works.

For example, inflation is defined by too much money chasing too few goods. Bidenomic’s deficit spending is inflation causing, not inflation reduction. Giving money back to the people is not inflation causing — people understand correct investment principles which will deploy the “multiplier effect” that results in higher tax revenue and prosperity. (This is also why we need extensively more financial literacy training for our youth so they can more easily and more broadly participate in these American wealth creating investments to help families out of poverty and to give back to nonprofits.)

Honestly it shouldn’t take a Rhodes Scholar or a PhD to know these things. Elections matter. Pick the right candidates and vote every time in every election.

Our citizens need you. If we get governments (all levels) to act responsibly and prudently (it means them saying no) then inflation and interest rates will come down organically and housing will become more affordable.

So, why are Washington state gas prices the highest in the nation? Because of their government policies — they keep increasing the costs of drilling plus interest rates, capital restrictions and regulation. If the governor tells oil companies they’re not welcome, will the oil companies start to hesitate and pull out? Yes, and less supply equals higher prices.

Also, do you realize our strategic oil reserve has been lowered by Bidenomics to the lowest quantity in 40 to 50 years? Meanwhile, major countries are stockpiling their reserves due to geopolitical tensions.

What happened 40 to 50 years ago? Gas rationing (half the days you weren’t allowed to buy gas) and we ended up eating out of the hands of the Arabs (this time add Venezuela and Iran). Is history rhyming here?

And, who does Bidenomics hurt most? You got it ... the poor and middle class. The people who can’t now afford housing and fuel bills. Inflation reduction? Hardly!

Who benefits from Bidenomics? The rich, politicians, semiconductor companies, infrastructure companies — in other words, big corporate America who mostly gladly dutifully obey Mr. Biden’s ideologies.

Elections matter, please be informed and take some action.

Rep. Terry Falk, R-Kalispell, is a member of the House Appropriations Committee.

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