The Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association is getting a bum rap.
The organization is named after fiery tax-cut advocate Howard Jarvis. Jarvis authored Proposition 13, the California tax limitation measure approved in 1978 by a two-to-one margin.
In recent months, like everywhere else, California has suffered economically. And now the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association is being angrily berated, for nevertheless still advocating lower taxes for besieged taxpayers.
The Sacramento Bee declares that there’s a “difference between protecting taxpayers and rigidly opposing all new tax increases, regardless of the state’s finances.” Watchdogs who commit the latter become “demagogues,” according to the editorial writers at the Bee. The Howard Jarvis folks are supposedly “charting a course to disaster.”
Oh, I don’t think so. I’m happy when foes of ever-larger tax burdens stick to their guns.
The Bee blithely ignores the true culprit here, asserting that in recent years, tax revenues have “plunged” in California as “deficits have deepened.”
Recent tax receipts are down slightly compared to a year ago. But for years, state government spending has skyrocketed, which the Bee says nothing about. The state budget was $56 billion in 1998. In 2008, $131 billion.
Here’s a suggestion, one the late Howard Jarvis would have liked. Cut spending.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.