Dudley Op-Ed in the Oregonian


Gubernatorial candidate Chris Dudley offers a defense of tax freezes and budget cuts in this Sunday editorial.

Read the full article here. Discuss below.

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    Excellent! Two old well-worn "solutions" to budgeting crop up again.

    On "zero based" budgeting, that's been long shown to be unrealistic, ineffective, and ironically, more likely to empower spending than cutting.

    Why? "Zero based" budgeting assumes you are comparing the number "zero" to what you spend today. Now, today's spending was not created out of thin air--it was based on a series of negotiations between the executive and legislative branches and the agency.

    Since prior spending reflects to at least some degree current preferences for that program, why do you think, when given a choice between spending now and "zero" that "zero" is a winning position?

    It's actually much better to propose incremental decreases, across the board decreases, etc. These are much more likely to result in actually spending decreases.

    Second, there is the laughable claim that zero-based budgeting is how most Oregonians manage their budgets.

    You know, I am going to sit down with my wife next week and say "Honey, next year we are going to spend zero on food and utilities. Now convince me that we should spend anything more."

    Yeah, right. Nice political posturing, Chris, but irresponsible budget policy.

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    Seems to me that this isn't the topic he should be offering a defense of right now.

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