Thank you, Seattle Times

For weeks I’ve been pushing the point that there is no state budget deficit, an argument, I was afraid, that was largely falling on deaf ears.  Until now:  “Rossi ad in error on state deficit – there isn’t one yet.”

That’s right, that’s the Seattle Times’ Bob Young setting the record straight (for the most part) on one of Dino Rossi’s erroneous and intentionally misleading campaign memes.

Dino Rossi is airing statewide radio and TV ads suggesting Gov. Christine Gregoire has ignored the state’s $3.2 billion budget shortfall.

The ads, titled “Denial,” never directly say that. But the ads repeat several times a Sept. 15 statement by Gregoire that “We do not have a deficit today.”

The ads assert the state has a deficit. A female narrator says about Gregoire: “Is she dishonest or is she in denial?”

The ad is inaccurate for this reason: The state is facing a projected $3.2 billion budget hole next year, but it does not have a deficit today.

The current budget, which runs to June 30, 2009, is balanced and the state has several hundred million dollars still in reserve. Part of the reserve is in a rainy-day fund that Gregoire pushed to create.

Exactly.  (Well, not exactly.  The $3.2 billion projected revenue shortfall is not for “next year,” it’s for the budget ending in 2011, that must be written next year.  But why pick nits?)

So why is this distinction so important?  Because when Rossi and the media repeat the imprecise term “budget deficit” voters understandably associate that with the hugeass federal budget hole created under the Bush administration (and about to be made even hugeassier with the impending Wall Street bailout), which is simply misleading.  Our state constitution prohibits deficit spending, and thus the next biennium budget will be balanced.  And the implied accusation that Gregoire has not been spending within our means is utter bullshit when she’s managed to sock away hundreds of millions of dollars of surplus.

So thank you Bob Young for taking this issue seriously—considerably more seriously than it was taken by the folks on your own ed board.

Comments

  1. 1

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    Who cares what Bob Young and the Seattle Times reports. They cannot even consult a Thesaurus BEFORE they spew.

    You cannot deny Gregoire’s own people confirm there is a $3.2 BILLION shortfall for the next Budget. Gregoire even used the word “shortfall”. Deficit is one of many synonyms for “shortfall”.

    Perhaps the angry KLOWNS in the Gregoire Camp aka TEAM HORSESASS ought to consult their Thesaurus before getting so lathered up. Gregoire herself used the term SHORTFALL…which is synonomous with DEFICIT.
    Just to save you LEFTIST PINHEADED KLOWNS a little time & grief (it’s the Christian thing to do!) here are some references—

    2 thesaurus results for: deficit
    Synonym Collection v1.1
    Main Entry: deficit
    Part of Speech: noun
    Synonyms: arrears, default, disadvantage, impairment, inadequacy, shortage, shortfall

    Roget’s II: The New Thesaurus
    Main Entry: shortage
    Part of Speech: noun
    Definition: The condition or fact of being deficient.
    Synonyms: defect, deficiency, inadequacy, insufficiency, lack, paucity, poverty, scantiness, scantness, scarceness, scarcity

    Come on ivan…stop parsing words and get to the meat. Gregoire overspent.
    And the excuse about “voter approved”.
    Things were obviously changing economically. That’s why voters elect “Leaders”.
    Gregoire choose to punt and increase spending blaming Bush & Voters….rather than lead and say “Now is not the time to increase spending 33%!”

    Gregoire is not a leader.
    Leaders adapt to changing conditions.
    Rossi is a Leader…just ask Gary Locke!!
    Locke was a leader too.
    Priorities of Government was an excellent approach to budgeting…which Gregoire shitcanned.

  2. 2

    spews:

    re 1: It is a PROJECTED DEFICIT —which means it may happen if things continue as they are, but very well could change. That is a far cry from what you are saying.

    What you are saying, Cyn., is a lie. But you can’t help yourself. It’s a character flaw. The kind of flaw that gets you fired from jobs.

    Your logic runs thusly: It is predicted that all human beings die.

    Cynical is human.

    Therefore, Mr. Cynical is dead. I only say nice things about the dead, so I won’t say anything at all.

  3. 3

    joel connelly spews:

    You are writing about the Seattle Times almost as much as Fairview Fannie writes about itself . . . which is to a point of wretched excess.

  4. 5

    Rujax! spews:

    Shorter Mr. Cynical-

    I DON’T GIVE A FUCK ABOUT FACTS GODDAMMIT!

    I’M RIGHT BECAUSE I THINK I’M RIGHT.

    AND I THINK I’M RIGHT BECAUSE I THINK I’M RIGHT!

    NOW GET OFF MY LAWN.

    ‘SPECIALLY YOU WABBIT…where’s my widdle shot gun…

  5. 8

    spews:

    It’s been two weeks since the financial sky was supposed to fall.

    Yet, it hasn’t.

    No bailout. It’s just a way to get at the funds that were supposed to come from ‘privatizing’ SS.

    Fuck em.

  6. 11

    Paul G. spews:

    Enough already. This website used to be good. Now you spend half your posts complaining about a (and here I’ll use your term) nit-picky issue. A deficit at the federal level and a projected shortfall at the state level are so close in kind that it simply makes sense to use one as shorthand for the other. Quibbling about it seems small. And if the best the sitting governor can do is complain that it’s just a projected shortfall and not a true deficit, she deserves to be turned out.

    And it would be one thing if it were republicans projecting the shortfall. But it’s the democrat-dominated senate ways and means committee.

    So please, for the sake of your website remaining the top one for local news from the left, drop this.

  7. 12

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    Paul G.

    It’s not likely Goldy will ever stop nit-picking and wordsmithing.

    Goldy has a Masters in “Pickin’ Flyshit outta Pepper”. Goldy’s problem is there are no real paying jobs for his education and craft.
    Hence, throw a few coins in the jar, wouldya?

    Gregoire & Goldstein aka TEAM HORSESASS are really made for each other.
    Both love to parse words, meanings and deflect from the real issues…in theis case, Gregoire’s $8 BILLION of increased spending in the face of a recession creating a huge shortfall (aka deficit) for the upcoming Budget.

    But don’t worry anybody…just trust Gregoire and TEAM HORSESASS…they will reveal Gregoire’s secret plan after the election!
    You know, the Gregoire Plan that is soooooooooo secret SHE doesn’t even know what it is!

    Based on Gregoire’s History as a 39-year Government Bureaucrat…it is almost certain she will TAX INCREASE her way out of this.
    I think most voters with an ounce of observatory acumen would come to that conclusion.

  8. 13

    Republican Suicide spews:

    Republican logic:

    Surplus = Deficit

    No wonder the country always gets into economic disasters when the wingnuts make eliminate the rules.

  9. 15

    SeattleJew spews:

    The problem with Goldy is that he is at the same time a pragmatist and idealist.

    For the time I have known him, David has criticized me for criticizing Gregoire for a lack of VISIBLE leadership .. that is idealism. To those who do not know her, she is just one more pol.

    Because Gregoire has not put herself into a potion where people see HER as an idealist, it is hard or impossible to convince people that Rossi is using big lies. In a media melieu where the 30″ sound byte rules supreme, Rossi would have to be found in the mens room at Spokane playing footsie with the sherrif in order to change anything.

    This is a big reason I am an Obamite. IF he wins, he will have done so with animage that makes him credible. This may be a great skill when he tells us we need to sell California to Bahrain in order to balance the budget!

  10. 16

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    SeattleJew spews:
    “I am an Obamite. IF he wins, he will have done so with animage that makes him credible. This may be a great skill when he tells us we need to sell California to Bahrain in order to balance the budget!”

    Actually selling California and it’s 55 Democrat Electoral College Delegates may solve many of our problems SJ!

  11. 17

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    SJ–
    Goldy is about as far away from a pragmatist as an individual can be. He is not practical. He floats out rumors and tries to pump air into nothing stories. That is not what a pragmatist does.

    Perhaps Goldy is idealistic.
    There is a fine-line between idealist and moron. I’m afraid Goldy has a tendenciy to swing to-and-fro in that range….

  12. 18

    Chinton spews:

    Goldy,
    thanks for all of your nit picking. I like all these little things we call facts.

  13. 19

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    Facts my a$$!
    All Goldy does is shade the truth and blow trumpets to create something out of nothing relevant.
    Here’s a fact or 2 for you–
    Gregoire increased spending by $8 BILLION.
    Gregoire’s own OBM indicated there is a $3.2 BILLION shortfall (aka Deficit) for the next biennium.

    Gregoire==Overspending in the face of a recession.

    Suck on those facts.

  14. 20

    reformed republican spews:

    This year Washington state will finish with a surplus without raising taxes – how many other states can say that in the face of one of the worst recessions?

    This year housing prices have started to go down in Washington state – almost 8%. everywhere else they were already going down by close to 20%.

    Washington was rated as one of the best run states and as one of the best places for business by indepedent organizations.

    Washington is 37th in total tax burden – only 13 states tax less.

    Let’s talk performance – republicans can’t run the economy and can’t mind the store with proper regulations nationwide.

    Why should we in Washington State trust republicans to do anything right? How does Rossi differ from the failed cut taxes on the rich and screw the environment policies of Bush?
    Answer – he doesn’t.

    In addition, he won’t allow video, takes illegal contributions and now may be soliciting illegal funds for his campaign.

    He also was the laughingstock of the state with his foolish and ill-concieved transportation plan that clearly was amateurish and had no realtionship to fiscal reality. With incompetence like that, why would anyone vote for him?

    Gee -tough choice here.

  15. 21

    John425 spews:

    Question: Would you rather have Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae use “conservative” lending practices or “liberal” lending practices?

    The answer goes to the heart of what’s wrong with America today.

  16. 22

    Joy Davis spews:

    It amazes me how much this election ( and many other events) can cause such separation amongst groups.Does no one know that we are indeed “all one”? Each of us, no matter which religion we advocate, are “Children of God”.
    I do not think the “Chritian” thing to do is vent our frustration and anger at all the events of our lives to the public. Is that what Jesus would do?
    Now you are welcome to check my spelling, and you are welcome to vent, if you so choose, however, I leave you with one thought. Maybe before we spew such venom, maybe we should all pray on it??
    This election is scary, our world situation is scary,our finances are very scary but if we only focus on the scare, will we miss the sunrise???