Iced Tea Tax

Let's say your situation is this: you are $38 B to $106 B in debt, depending on who does the acounting .  Your current budget says you will spend about $12 B more this year than you will take in.  What do you do?

If you are an Illinois politician, you create a new capital budget of $31 B.  How will you pay for it, since you're already $12 B in the hole?

"Illinois will pay for the public works program by selling bonds - in effect, borrowing money and repaying it over 20 or 30 years. The money to repay that debt will come from a variety of taxes and fees, plus a major gambling expansion.  Drivers will pay more for licenses and registrations. The tax on beer, wine and hard liquor is going up. Sales tax will be charged on more items, including iced tea."

This being Illinois, this new borrowing and taxing enjoyed broad bipartisan support.

That was yesterday.  Today, the Illinois legislature approved a budget.  How did it close the budget gap?  Mostly by taking on more debt and simply not paying all its bills.  In fact, Illinois will simply not pay $3.2 B that it owes state contractors and service providers.

"I'm not going to play this game.  This is a prostitution of the process!" shouted Bill Black, Republican of Danville.  It's not clear whether he said that before or after he voted for the budget.

Start taxing tea and simply don't pay what you owe.  That's the Illinois way.  See?  It doesn't have to be hard.
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