Photo of man with pockets inside out, showing nothing in them.

Fiscally Speaking, Where Does YOUR State Rank?

In Business, Economics, Front Page by Allen WestLeave a Comment

I always like to correct people when they say “the United States of America.” The correct lexicon is “these United States of America.” Here in our America, we have the system of federalism, which our 9th and 10th amendments of our Constitution firmly establish. Those powers not enumerated to the federal government reside with our states, and, of course, We the People. We all know that our Constitution is constructed to be a limiting document on the power and reach of the federal government. Ya know, here in America, we do not trust a centralized government.

But, with that being said, we face a true philosophical and ideological challenge, because there is a delusional drive towards more centralized government control in America. I think the best way to determine if progressive socialism or constitutional conservatism is the best way forward for America is to look at our states. After all, our states are the incubators of our democracy, the foundation of our Constitutional Republic.

With that being said, I went back to the last report by the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, released a year ago, in October of 2018.

As reported by the Mercatus Center:

“For the fifth and final year, a new study from the Mercatus Center at George Mason University ranks the 50 states according to their financial condition. Each edition has provided a snapshot of each state’s fiscal health by providing information from audited state financial reports in an easily accessible format.

In “Ranking the States by Fiscal Condition, 2018 Edition,” Eileen Norcross and Olivia Gonzalez calculate this year’s rankings from each state’s fiscal year 2016 reports and then apply trend analysis to reports for each year from 2006 until 2016. 

The study measures how well states can meet short-term and long-term bills by examining their financial statements. Most states are in a stable condition, with the exception of the size of unfunded pension liabilities (a large portion of most state government obligations). Some states also have consistently low levels of cash, which indicate the potential for budget shortfalls during a recession. 

A Multidimensional Approach to Fiscal Solvency 

The study analyzes state finances according to five dimensions. These dimensions combine to produce an overall ranking of state fiscal solvency. 

  • Cash solvency. Does a state have enough cash on hand to cover its short-term bills?
  • Budget solvency. Can a state cover its fiscal year spending with revenues, or does it have a budget short-
    fall?
  • Long-run solvency. Can a state meet its long-term spending commitments? Will there be enough money to cushion it from economic shocks or other long-term fiscal risks?
  • Service-level solvency. How large a percentage of personal income are taxes, revenue, and spending? How much “fiscal slack” does a state have to increase spending if citizens demand more services?
  • Trust fund solvency. How much debt does a state have? How large are its unfunded pension and healthcare liabilities?

Top Five States

The top five most fiscally solvent states are Nebraska (#1), South Dakota (#2), Tennessee (#3), Florida (#4), and Oklahoma (#5). 

Bottom Five States 

The bottom five states in terms of fiscal solvency are Kentucky (#46), Massachusetts (#47), New Jersey (#48), Connecticut (#49), and Illinois (#50).”

[ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW]

You can see the entire country map just above. It is quite telling in that, for the most part, the states with conservative governance fair much better, and, the states ranked below average, and the bottom five, are governed by progressive socialists . . . ya know, Democrats. The exceptions being Mississippi and Kentucky.

Now, I think it a fair question to ask at the next Democrat (socialist) Party debate would be, “if the States that represent your tax, regulatory, and fiscal plans and policies rate below average, or in the bottom five, why would you want to implement those same policies for America?” Yep, just imagine the eye-rolling and deer in the headlights look that the debate moderators would receive. Priceless.

Now, there are those progressive socialist detractors who will say, “ahh, but that was from last year.” Well, I would tend to believe these trends have not changed much in just one year, from October of 2018.

Unless you have not been paying attention, California, which has the highest state income tax at 13 percent, also has the highest poverty level in the country at 20 percent. So, I do not think much has changed from last to this year in the “Golden” State.

I would offer that if the policy of higher taxes and more government programs and dependency is the formula for the left, then why are these blue states failing? The greater question is, if these failing policies being proposed by these Democrat (socialist) Party presidential candidates are sooo great, why are businesses, corporations, and people fleeing these failed states for fiscally sound red states?

And lastly, the money question is, why do progressive socialists — fleeing from failing blue states — come to fiscally sound red states, and vote to turn them into failing blue states?

Folks, that is just plain dumb, delusional, deranged, and utterly stuck on stupid. As the drill sergeants used to say, ya can’t fix stupid. After watching three Democrat (socialist) Party presidential debates, I fully and wholeheartedly concur.

Ya know, the left in America remind me of locusts, they just go from fertile ground to fertile ground and destroy the land. Ponder this, folks: there was a poll taken last fall showing that 46 percent of San Franciscans wanted to leave “The City by the bay.” Their desired destinations? You got it, Idaho — number 7 on the rankings — and Texas.

Now, I will admit, seeing Texas ranked as number 22 is a little disheartening, but the Lone Star State is still above average.

Perhaps one of the things dragging down some fiscally strong red states, like Texas, are the failures of the large cities that are run by — guess who — yep, progressive socialists.

Take, for example, the fiscal mismanagement of the first responder pension fund in Dallas. The State of Texas had to bail them out. So, even in fiscally strong red states, the cities where the invasive cancer of progressive socialism governs, it adversely affects the health of the host.

Of course, I can hear the leftists who troll this website trying to delegitimize this research, but sadly, numbers do not lie. Then again, the leftists now believe that math is racist . . . all because they are not good at it, which these rankings prove.

Hey, Nancy Pelosi and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, we do not want y’all turning Texas blue . . . or in the case of this national ranking, mustard yellow and red. Uh, if y’all noticed from this map, California and New York ain’t doing so good.

[To ensure you never miss an article, please sign up to be notified when a new column is posted! It’s free and you may opt-out at any time.]

LTC West is running for Chair of the Republican Party of Texas! To support his efforts, please visit his campaign website!

Political advertisements paid for by LTC Allen West for State Chairman