Jeff Gerber's July 20 letter, “Study Hard, N.C. Legislature,” perfectly illustrates the conservative mindset about government revenue and spending. He says, "making cuts to the law-enforcement and judicial system is ludicrous," and "conservatives never raise taxes.” Money doesn't grow on trees; it has to come from somewhere. In the case of government-provided services such as law enforcement, that money comes from taxes. So which is it? Law-enforcement services or no raised taxes?
The glaringly obvious thing here is that conservatives have no problem with spending. They don't want to spend it on what they don't want to spend it on. I pay the same taxes that Mr. Gerber does, but I would rather that my money go to support the community in positive, constructive ways rather than on incarceration. It is far more expensive to arrest, try and incarcerate for many crimes, especially for things like drug possession, then it is to put that person through rehab.
He says, "Make the cuts where cuts are needed, and leave the rest alone.” This is where the conservative argument breaks down every single time. OK, where are they needed? Education? Health care? Infrastructure? All of these things are valuable government services that very few people would argue against. The problem for conservatives is that they want the services, but don't want to pay for them. So which is it?
— Jim Konczyk