Tonight, will Obama plegde to spend other people's money on the gulf?
Isn't that his best advice everytime...spend other taxpayers money as his way to solve "problems"? But haven't we already spent enough taxpayer money on the Gulf states? Here's a few facts:
"Obviously, this is an ecological disaster. The people of the Gulf coast are going to need help getting back on their feet. And the wetlands need saving and restoring. No one's going to dispute any of that.
But amid some of this hysteria, let's get a little context.
Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama were getting billions of dollars a year in subsidy from the rest of us even when times were good.
That's because they get vastly more back in federal spending than they pay in taxes.
The Tax Foundation, a non-partisan think-tank in Washington, D.C., has done the most authoritative analysis. It looked at federal tax and spending data through 2005, the last year for which numbers are available.
In the preceding quarter century, it found, these three states got an extra $430 billion from the rest of us. That's the difference between how much they paid into the pot and how much they took out. (In today's money — after accounting for inflation — by my math it comes to around $609 billion.)
And this is a lowball figure, because the Tax Foundation adjusted the numbers to balance the federal budget. In reality, thanks to the huge deficits racked up nationwide most years, the true cash subsidies were even greater than that.
In 2004, the year before Katrina distorted things, Louisiana got back $1.57 in federal spending for every dollar it paid in taxes. That's a net profit of $3,100 per resident.
In Mississippi the figure was $1.82 in spending per dollar paid in taxes, or $3,800 per person.
In Alabama, $1.67, or nearly $4,000 per person.
And never forget that the majority of voters in these states have spent years railing against "big government" and "federal waste" even while pocketing the same. Alabama is proud to call itself a heartland of the Tea Party. Louisiana elected as governor — with a 54% majority — Bobby Jindal, who was, up until around April 20, busy trying to build a career denouncing federal spending."