Progressives in Colorado Legislature demonstrate they care little about jobs
It’s been a revealing week in Colorado politics. Disorganized, foolish and frightening for this legislative session.
This Legislature generates the same feeling I imagine would occur if parents told their children there really is a monster under the bed and it’s bigger and hungrier than the one they were worried about.
It’s no secret the Legislature’s finger jab to the eye of the Constitution on gun-control edicts caused the firearms-accessories manufacturer Magpul to begin the process of leaving the state. That seems to be just the beginning of an exodus.
Magpul has been a leader and innovator in the manufacture of magazines and other accessories for firearms, but also in revitalizing the injection molding process for the plastics the company uses in its products. Because of that, other companies that supply materials for the Magpul process will probably also follow their biggest customer to friendlier pastures.
Additionally this week, HiViz, another nationally known supplier of firearms accessories and sights, has announced plans to move its Fort Collins facility to another state.
We also know from Tuesday’s Daily Sentinel that the International Defensive Pistol Association, which was planning a shooting competition for Montrose that reportedly would have brought hundreds of competitors to the area, has canceled its event because of the state’s recent legislative actions.
Likewise, firearms manufacturer Ruger will be moving its 2013 Rimfire Challenge World Championships out of the state.
Even for those not directly involved in these kinds of events, there is a powerful secondary impact among hotels, restaurants and countless other businesses that depend on visitors’ dollars in a state that still counts on out-of-state guests for a significant amount of revenue.
The scary conversation that goes with this litany of loss is that, according to conservative legislators, proponents of the new gun laws don’t care if we lose these jobs. The attitude seems to be to let them go, they aren’t wanted here, anyway. Proponents of the gun laws believe these companies shouldn’t be making those firearms, accessories, targets, bullets, wood grips or sand filled bags to rest their rifles upon to begin with. It’s bad juju.
Mind you, these are the same folks who feel pieces of the sky hitting their heads if a job associated with the heavily subsidized solar, wind or karma power industry is not continuously funded with tax dollars.
There is a difference here, of course. Jobs associated with the firearms industry are private and pay their own way.
The frustration for conservative legislators is in trying to make economic and job-related arguments to a core group of radical progressives that doesn’t care about those things and doesn’t want to base its decision-making on economic prosperity. Instead, this group hopes to bury prior mistakes under piles of taxpayer dollars.
Witness Senate Bill 213, which is another in an endless stream of attempts to fix a broken educational system by packing it lovingly in money. Another $1.1 billion to be exact. Thankfully, it has to rely on ballot measures to raise the taxes to do it.
Each legislative session and general election, the state’s predominantly urban delegations dutifully put forth an effort to massively raise more money for what is loosely referred to as education. In most cases, this turns out to be money which will flow through the system to the education lobby and unions, where it is recycled back through union dues for campaign donations and lobbying efforts benefiting the same politicians who raised the taxes for the whole process initially.
So far, this is one of the only recycling efforts that actually pays for itself.
Also on the agenda is Denver Sen. Irene Aguilar’s recently introduced constitutional amendment to create a state-run universal health care system. The idea would be funded, according to the Denver Business Journal, by a 6 percent payroll tax on employers, a 3 percent payroll tax on workers and a 9 percent income tax hike. This in a state that has an unemployment rate of about 7.2 percent. Mesa County’s is about 9.1 percent.
Just don’t ask about the jobs to pay for these plans. The proponents don’t seem to care.
Rick Wagner writes more on politics at his blog, The War on Wrong.