So, WELCOME to the Nehemiah220 website!!!
On my first ever post, I want to converse with you about our favorite issue in America, FREEDOM! Yet, I will not do it in a philosophical or sociological format, but in a practical one. I do not consider myself to be an economy expert, but I've learned enough in my academic and professional life to smell evil when it is around. The second thing a tyrannical government always takes away from people after guns is, obviously, money. But it is done slowly, one dime at a time, a new tax here, a new bond there... You know, they want so bad to "help" those in need... Well, let's elaborate a little bit on that.
As many know now, Midland Independent School District (MISD) proposed a school bond that would reach $1.2 billion in the years to come. The bond passed by only TWELVE vote on Nov 5! Because of the tight margin, however, those who opposed the bond required a recount. Yesterday, 12, the recount flipped the result to 25 votes against the bond, according to Midland Reporter Telegram, where I first read about it.
This result should be effusively celebrated! And on the lines below I will do my very best to explain why.
Bond (comes from "bondage") proposals stand out as annual rites of election cycles. What projects and infrastructure are so vital We The People should authorize and sell bonds to support? Bonds are considered (and many of them approved) for a whole array of reasons: schools, parks, flood control, transportation, high-speed rail, stem cell research and on and on. At county and municipal levels, the usual beneficiaries of bond proposals are schools.
First off, the notion of “selling” bonds is misleading, because it implies that we are having a something like a bake sale or flea market to raise some cash. Bonds are a liability. What it means is: a government agency BORROWS money on the behalf of the People and convey the bill straight back to taxpayers to pay it back. And the math is always the same: we issue a $100 million bond, the community will have to pay off $100 million. In our case, $569 million.
Let's assume that We The People agree on a project to be funded. The discussion should go around this line: Is this bond the best method to fund this endeavor? The sales pitch for a bond usually follows the same script followed by MISD: “We will help many students and staff without raising taxes!” What's behind the curtain, nevertheless, is always this hidden trick: “You buy now, you will pay later!”
Bonds should not be a "magical" cure for depleted city budgets, to start with! Imagine your current household budget is in the red. Would it be a sane decision to take out a bank loan and thus place further pressure on your already overburdened budget? Well, the same dynamic is in play in a government budget. At the government level, bond payments come before regular budget expenditures, and therefore every dollar dedicated to bond repayment will be a dollar less for general fund expenditures. There is no way out, y'all!
Now, the critical point is: who pays the bond back? In the case of a school bond, it usually is a long-term type of bond, meaning that - and this is extremely important! - current students who will theoretically be benefiting from the bond now will be the ones repaying the bond later as adults! Is this at all fair? Do they know about or are aware of it? Has anybody cared telling them this part of the story? In fact, some students who aren’t even alive when a bond is approved will be legally liable for its repayment! The adults who feel they are responsible to help the children by approving these bonds now should come clear and let everybody know that they are assigning debt to people, students, who have no voice, because they can't even vote. Could we say that this is taxation without representation, a milestone of our Declaration of Independence? This post-modern, reasonless, sentimental “caring-about-the-next-generation” fad always hits the next generation real hard!
If we truly want to leave a better Midland (including minimal debt!) for the coming generation, we should focus our existing revenue streams on endeavors we deem worthy. In the ongoing effort to improve and sustain our communities, We The People, not bureaucrats, are the ones to determine what projects add the most value to our lives. The responsibility for financial FREEDOM lies with us, and as such we should remain vigilant in ensuring that short-term benefits are not nullified by long-term economic burdens.
As our great Founding Father Thomas Jefferson so clearly put it,
"This is the tendency of all human governments. A departure from principle becomes a precedent for a second, that second for a third, and so on, till the bulk of society is reduced to mere automations of misery, to have no sensibilities left but for sinning and suffering. And the fore horse of this frightful team is public debt, and in its train there is always wretchedness and oppression."
Or, as our Brother Paul would say, which served of a bursting inspiration to our Founding Fathers,
"It is for FREEDOM that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of bondage" (Galatians 5:1).
So, let us celebrate Midland County's FREEDOM! At least for now, because they will come back! We will be ready!
"The price of FREEDOM is eternal VIGILANCE!"
- The Hechinger Report
- Center For Public Policy Priority
- Thomas Jefferson Encyclopedia
ELIEL ROSA has built a solid career in the urban planning and public policy arenas in Brazil, Latin American countries, Portuguese-speaking African nations, Spain and in the US for the past 20 years. However, instead of keeping a long list of professional credentials and accomplishments, there is a special, top feature he would want you to retain: he is a diehard America-loving legal immigrant!