A Warm Anchor Rising Critique Welcome to Brian Hull

We’d like to welcome, of course, Brian Hull to the RI blogscene in his new role as proprietor of RIFuture. I, for one, am hopeful for a return to the collegiality of the Matt Jerzyk years and am determined not to be the cause should that prove unworkable.
That said, what better method of offering a cyber handshake and slap on the back could there be than highlighting our fundamental differences? And they must be fundamental, because this argument seems flatly erroneous to me:

There is a real big problem with the [state government] shutdown days, over and above the forced pay cut of 4.6% that the employees will have to absorb. We already have a weak economy, and to essentially take another $17.3 million out of it won’t make things any better. Consumer spending makes up the bulk of GDP, nationally and in the state. Add the multiplier effect and every dollar spent generates a dollar plus in economic activity. By stripping out $17.3 million from the local economy of Rhode Island, we’re going to depress the economy by much more than $17.3 million. This is not a good thing.

Yet:

We’re in a recession, and while the recession might be getting better, there is no indication that employment will bounce back anytime soon. This will mean a suppressed economic situation in RI potentially for years to come. The unfortunate reality is that we need to raise revenues. And that means higher taxes.

We could certainly dip into the argument over whether state workers or taxpayers would use money in a more economically productive fashion. Even if we ignore the fact that it costs the government money to collect taxes, but nothing not to collect them, and even if we accept that new taxes would skew toward the higher end of the economic spectrum (which I assume would be Brian’s preference), I’d argue that the business owners and wealthy residents thus implicated would be apt to spend additional money in a way that maximizes the multiplier effect.
The more direct point, though, is that Brian’s appeal to the need to leave money in the economy ought to suggest a different form of government cut than to the labor force. Instead, he merely argues for redistribution.
He doesn’t even advocate for easing restrictions, regulations, and mandates on businesses and productive individuals as a way of increasing economic activity and, thus, government revenue. One gets the impression, from his post, that “taxpayer dollars” exist in some sort of pool outside of the economy that folks won’t “be happy about paying” to the government, but that they otherwise won’t use.

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doughboys
doughboys
11 years ago

Does this mean Crowley is all done over there?
The tone of the place changed dramatically when he took over, for the worse.

Justin Katz
11 years ago

He’ll still be writing, but he won’t be defining the site, I don’t think.

Mike Cappelli
Mike Cappelli
11 years ago

“By stripping out $17.3 million from the local economy of Rhode Island, we’re going to depress the economy by much more than $17.3 million.”
Ohhhhh, so now the stupid liberals believe in the multiplier effect and trickle down economics.
Actually, you never know what these clowns believe in. They have the moral compass of an amoeba – which is why you just can’t trust liberals. They don’t even know what they believe in.

George Elbow
George Elbow
11 years ago

Justin
Very well said.
Your problem is that you are expecting Logic to prevail from the RIFuture flock.
Said differently, you are expecting a miracle.
PS – regarding your comment on Patrick Crowley; “He’ll still be writing” …I assume you meant “He’ll still be writing FICTION”, sort of like his Fiction with regard to “the cost of teaching has risen slower than overall inflation”??

Tom W
Tom W
11 years ago

Using Mr. Hull’s logic, then I’m sure that he supports an immediate freeze of the state pension plan, since a large percentage of that money is / will be taken out of the RI economy and sent to places like Florida.
Ditto retiree health care.
Better that we freeze the pension plan and going forward convert to a 401k/ 403b regime, and cut taxes currently going to reduce the billions in unfunded pension liabilities so that the money will stay in the local economy.

Will
11 years ago

I agree that he seems more normal than the prior ownership. I wish him well.
In any event, if he likes “revenue,” he’s definitely not going to be happy when the “new and improved” revised deficit numbers are announced on Tuesday (psst… the deficit just doubled … whoopsy!). And that’s only the deficit they know about now… just wait until the November numbers come out. More cuts are a coming!
PS Me thinks those 12 furlough days aren’t going to be close to enough. Where’s the budget axe? 😉

Tom W
Tom W
11 years ago

>>In any event, if he likes “revenue,” he’s definitely not going to be happy when the “new and improved” revised deficit numbers are announced on Tuesday (psst… the deficit just doubled … whoopsy!). And that’s only the deficit they know about now… just wait until the November numbers come out. More cuts are a coming! PS Me thinks those 12 furlough days aren’t going to be close to enough. Where’s the budget axe? 😉
I’ll be in FL by Labor Day weekend.
Safely away from RI before the General Assembly reconvenes.
Hallelujah!
Or to quote Dr. Martin Luther King: “Free at last! Free at last! Great God in heaven, free at last!”
The Democrat General Assembly is in charge. Merely extrapolate for their historical modus operandi, and the inevitability of a bleak future for RI comes into focus.
Good luck to those of you who will still be here. I wish you well.

kathy
kathy
11 years ago

🙁 Enjoy FL, you will be missed. Those who have to opportunity to get out do.

Tom W
Tom W
11 years ago

Thanks Kathy.
Somehow I don’t think I’ll be missed by everyone though – such as NEARI. ; -)
>>Those who have to opportunity to get out do.
I’m not the first to leave, and won’t be the last.
It’s no coincidence that MI and RI have been the only two states losing population … and in RI’s case, in spite of the influx of illegals and their anchor baby progeny.

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