Tuesday, October 18, 2005

"Elections shouldn't be about yesterday, they should be about tomorrow"

And about rainbows, butterflies, cute puppies, and little, drooly babies that are made extra safe from creepy, bathroom-lurking pedophiles through a death penalty to pervs law passed by hard working Iowa legislators (And we can follow the lead of New York & Nebraska, close down the chat rooms.)

O.Kay Henderson (what a great name) from Radio Iowa goes in search of candidate comments on the Grow Iowa Values Fund. She finds things…

The 2006 governor's race in Iowa may be shaping up as a referendum on the premiere piece of out-going Democrat Governor Tom Vilsack's economic development plan. …

Bob Vander Plaats says the Values Fund has "inserted" state government into the venture capital business. Vander Plaats says government should create a "level playing field" for all businesses …

Jim Nussle, suggests the Iowa Values Fund has merely been a publicity stunt for Governor Vilsack and his economic development director, Michael Blouin, …"I believe that our current economic plan is defined by whether or not a person, a political leader, gets credit," Nussle says. "If they can get credit by showing up at the groundbreaking or the ribbon-cutting or they can get their picture in the paper saying 'Look at all the jobs that I just created for you as a politician' that's called economic development." ….

Ed Fallon is the most vocal in opposing the program. He calls the high-dollar government grants for businesses "corporate welfare" that's "throwing money down a rat hole."

Patty Judge, another Democratic candidate for governor, says the Values Fund isn't popular in rural Iowa. … She says "trickle down" economics doesn't work and Iowans are telling her they'd like policymakers to take another look at the Values Fund.

Chet Culver, another Democratic gubernatorial candidate, does not mention the Values Fund during his campaign appearances.

[Mike] Blouin, Vilsack's ex-economic development director, defends the Values Fund, …

Henderson’s report goes on with Vilsack talking about how great the Iowa Values Fund is and how candidates had better be careful about beating up on his economic development baby.

... it's greatest cheerleader is Vilsack himself. Vilsack claims the Values Fund has helped create or retain 20-thousand jobs in Iowa. … and he suspects lawmakers might over-ride any governor who sought to end the Values Fund. Vilsack also suggests it's bad strategy for a candidate to bad mouth the program rather than tout their own ideas.
However, the line of the day, more than likely the week, from Governor Vilsack has to be this one.
"Elections shouldn't be about yesterday, they should be about tomorrow," Vilsack says.
So says the man that just sent out an opinion piece with this little nugget on the use of tax dollars for economic development.
End Corporate Welfare. Cutting corporate subsidies could provide another rich vein of savings. While $60 billion of such subsidies are in the budget, a few relatively easy targets stand out, such as the $2 billion provided to large corporate beneficiaries of the Department of Commerce's overseas trade promotion programs. They should pay for this service if they want it. (Cuts That Heal by Tom Vilsack, WSJ, October 13, 2005)
And how exactly does that $10 million Iowa Values Fund corporate subsidy to Wells Fargo apply to Iowa’s tomorrow?

Oh, I know, we need some major corporation to be able to put down big chunks of change to sponsor our Des Moines based cultural events, and what better way to channel some of that $10 million back to the taxpayers but with nice, happy, family-friendly venues and events that have a Wells Fargo corporate logo all over everything.

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