Growth and development
The Las Vegas Sun trotted out some bad economics this week in an attempt to prove that "green energy" creates growth. NPRI explores some of the true costs of green energy mandates.
It was the best of graphs, it was the worst of graphs. Assembly Speaker Barbara Buckley has graciously sent NPRI the data set she used to generate a graph showing Nevada's general fund revenue per resident for FY 2009 will be below the 1996 level.
In attempting recently to dissect Barbara Buckley's general fund revenue per capita graph, we were only able to ascertain that she adjusted for inflation back to 1996. When trying to "reverse engineer" her graph (we took her 1996 per-capita amount and adjust it to 2008 dollar values to create a starting-point comparison between her graph and ours), it appears as though she is using the population estimates for the beginning of the fiscal year for her general fund per capita calculation.
Brian Greenspun's Sunday opinion column in the Las Vegas Sun illustrated good intentions, but ultimately dangerous and misguided thinking. In calling for government to take the reins of Wall-Street investing – supposedly in the interest of the taxpayer – Greenspun calls for a new kind of socialism for America's future economy.
Nevada's economy faces more trouble than does that of any other state in the country. Rising energy costs, a severe stock market slump and a total collapse of the housing market have led to lower profits, less disposable income for tourists to spend and lower tax revenue.
After the first attempt at a bailout failed on September 29, the Dow Industrial Average dropped about 780 points. Newspapers, politicians and pundits across the country took it as a sign that we needed the bailout. Voting "no" had caused the "largest" single-day fall in U.S. history, we were told.
After Nevada increased taxes in 2003 (new revenues were collected for FY 2004) Nevada's government rode atop a booming revenue source that was riding atop a booming economy. As a result, general fund revenue collections increased 28 percent, and overall government spending increased 17.6 percent.
During her town-hall forum Monday, Assembly Speaker Barbara Buckley made a nice presentation replete with facts. Facts are exactly what the tax-hike advocates should provide. They rarely give us any.
Alan Reynolds of the Cato Institute published an excellent article in Forbes Magazine recently. Citing the buzz from politicians, wonks and pundits who claim the credit crisis has frozen lending across the country, Mr. Reynolds replies: "Oh really?"
SustainLane Media recently ranked Las Vegas 47th out of 50 U.S. cities in terms of "sustainability." After looking at the subcategories of what constitutes "sustainability," I have to say: whoopty-do.