Friday, October 15, 2004
"Want to know something funny about Taxachusetts? For every dollar it pays Uncle Sam in taxes, it receives only 79* cents back in federal services and subsidies. That ranks it 44th among the 50 states in federal expenditures per dollar of taxes. Indeed, there's a very strong correlation between liberal, pro-government "blue states" and states that are least dependent on federal spending. There's also a strong correlation between conservative, anti-government "red states" and states that are most dependent on federal spending. (Click here for details.) If you think of Red America as stubbornly self-reliant and Blue America as a drain on the Treasury, you've got it exactly backwards.
I don't begrudge the South and the West their many military bases and national parks. But I do wish people in those parts of the country would stop feeling superior to Northeastern welfare-staters. I will happily make an exception for the District of Columbia, where I live, which eats an appalling $6.17 for every dollar of federal revenue it kicks in. But lay off Massachusetts, Mr. President. When you took the oath of office, you swore to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of all 50 United States, not just the ones that voted for you. We fought a war about this, and the secessionists lost."
- Timothy Noah, "Lay Off Massachusetts"
It's interesting how easily you could apply this observation to Spain: I heard a statistic a while ago that stated that tax revenues from Catalunya and the Basque country, two of Spain's 17 autonomous communities, account for nearly 37% of the entire national budget. Despite their importance to the country as a whole, and despite their generosity (sure taxes are not vountary, but they still pay them with less complaint than most Americans) they are ridiculed and despised by the very people who depend on their tax "Euros".
P.S. Credit where credit's due: Kevmo, this matches your observations about Montana.