Ranger Rick: Illinois keeps going from bad to worse

The state of Illinois is broke and getting “broker”!

Over the weekend, they passed a $5.4 billion tax increase. In the realization of how to cut your own throat because you can’t be an adult, let us examine the methods which governments employ to balance budgets:

• Increase taxation.

• Decrease spending.

• Print money (which a state can’t do but the federal government does, but they can issue bonds – however, nobody in the bond market would buy Illinois bonds because of their non-existent credit rating).

The first problem for Illinois is it has a dysfunctional state government. It has a Republican governor but is controlled by a Democrat Speaker, so nothing can be voted on without the Speaker’s approval, which only favors increasing taxes, not decreasing spending.

What does Illinois expect, it’s been under Democratic rule for a century and nothing improves or is spending reigned in to at least balance the state budget. This is courting disaster – Illinois is on the brink of bankruptcy. By increasing taxation and not reigning in spending, it will force those citizens who will bear the burden of increased taxes to make up their minds. Is it more advantageous to pay the increase or are they fed up with the increased taxes and decide to vote with their feet and move? Many have, Illinois is #1 at having residents move to friendlier states in which to live and keep more of their earnings instead of giving it to out of control politicians to throw to the wind and waste.

If you are African-American and living in Chicago, ask yourself this:

In all the years the huge majority of blacks have supported Democrat candidates for state and city offices, you’ve come out and supported them in reaching office in overwhelming numbers. What have they ever done for you except to ignore you once they’ve gotten your vote? And why do you continue to support those that don’t help you?

It is bad enough living in the state, but living within Chicago city limits and surrounding suburbs is a nightmare of tolls, excessive taxation for the privilege of living there in the form of income, property, and a myriad of other taxes. If you like working and giving most your income to the city and state, Chicago and Illinois is the place for you!

The recent tax hikes are part of a record $37 billion budget (each Illinois household would pay an additional $1,125 in taxes each year on average). Imagine the calls to the U-Haul dealers ringing to get trailers and trucks to haul belongings out of state, if you are so lucky to be able to do so? U-Haul and moving companies in Illinois, business will be booming soon.

Illinois has children running government. They always want to spend, spend, spend and never cut or slow spending for ineffective and out of control programs – to get their budget under control and pay down debt. What you are seeing in Illinois is the harbinger to what the federal government is and will be experiencing in the future.

The state voted in the affirmative for the tax hike bill by a 32 to 26 margin, with no Republicans voting in favor – at least there are 26 adults in the legislature. The increases encompass the following:

  • Hikes personal and corporate income taxes by $5 billion. The personal income tax rate goes up 1.2%. Corporate income taxes increase 1.75%. Can you say lost jobs and companies moving out of state?
  • Expands the sales tax to laundry and dry-cleaning services as well as storage and other services to bring in $55 million.
  • Raises $54 million in cable and satellite TV taxes.
  • Closes corporate loopholes worth $125 million.
  • The highest property taxes in the nation will increase even more!

In your private life, what do you do if your income does not cover your expenses? Do you cut back, be more careful in your spending, drop extra expenses and pay down debt? Or do you ring up the credit cards and pay the minimum each month? Eventually, if you do the latter, you will go bankrupt, your credit will be non-existent, and you many lose everything you thought you owned.

What will become of Illinois? Bankruptcy is the only solution in the future for the state unless there are quick and drastic changes. For those of you visiting Chicago in the future, please be careful – the robberies, physical violence, shootings and killings are increasing every day.

And thank God you live in Michigan.

1 Comment

  • I moved to Michigan from Illinois eight years ago for the reasons in your column. Outside of the greater Chicago area Illinois is a decent place, with good folks.

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