What I am seeing on some of the conservative blogs is the promotion of the recently released report that Tennessee ranks 45th in taxes per capita by state. On those blogs where level-headed comments are allowed, rational people are setting the record straight on that ranking. Some of my favorite retorts to the rightwing love affair with low-tax rankings:
- "Tennesseans have extra bucks in their pockets to put toward a nice boat to run around on those federally subsidized lakes and what not."
- "[Conservatives] also ignore how much drain various states are on the federal government. Many low tax states don't pay their own way, getting more money in fed. dollars than they pay in." [BTW, this is similar to a point I made about the town of Spring Hill last July when the conservatives were drooling over the town's cut of property taxes to zero: state money collected from all Tennesseans allowed them to stop paying their own way. So, what conservatives call "tax reform" is basically Spring Hill leeching and draining tax dollars off the rest of Tennesseans.]
- "If you think of Red America as stubbornly self-reliant and Blue America as a drain on the Treasury, you've got it exactly backward."
- "I just buy stuff from Massachusetts online so I can avoid paying Tennessee's unconscionable 9.25% sales tax."
- "[M]aybe higher taxes [are] related to education. The states with higher taxes have a higher rate of high school graduates then states with lower taxes."