Sunday, August 07, 2011

Rick Perry Bends it Like Beebe on Slush Fund


Texas Governor Rick Perry (R) has a lot more in common with Arkansas Governor Mike Beebe than you might think. I am not talking about the fact that they have both endorsed Al Gore for President. The political winds in Texas shifted dramatically towards the Republicans after that, and Perry shifted with them right into the Governor's office. (Editors note: I originally said he backed Gore over Bush, but that was an error. He was Gore's Texas Chairman in the primaries. He actually switched to the GOP during that campaign and endorsed Bush in the General election) Perry endorsed former N.Y. Mayor Rudy Guiliani early in the 2008 campaign. I guess Sen. John McCain was too conservative for him.

But just because labels change does not mean that policies change. In Arkansas, we are very familiar with Governor Mike Beebe's "quick action closing fund." The idea is for the Governor to have a pool of money he can use to lure business into the state by offering them taxpayer money to locate here. In other words, taxing us all, including other businesses, so that the governor can pick winners and losers.

Well, it turns out that Rick Perry also has such a 'deal closing' fund. There it is called the TEF (Texas Enterprise Fund), but its the same thing that we have here. t is even referred to with similar names; "action fund, closing fund, slush fund." And get this, the largest recipient of the fund in Texas was Hewlett Packard. The largest recipient of the fund in Arkansas so far? Hewlett Packard!

There are a lot of dots here that I do not have time to connect, but according to this article in New American, their fund is experiencing just the kind of abuse I warned about for the one in Arkansas. Taxpayer money from the Governor's fund is going to companies who then turn around and donate a significant fraction of that money back to Governor Perry- sometimes after funneling it through the Republican Governor's Association. Money is being taken from local businesses and is used to fund a big-name competitor that opens up down the street. Please read the article for more information.

Like Beebe, Perry has fought to keep his slush fund budgeted, even in the face of government shortfalls to critical programs. I objected to the whole concept of the "quick action closing fund" when Beebe used it, and I object to it when Perry uses it. Tough talk and showy prayer meetings (didn't Jesus say that when you pray you should go to your innermost room and shut the door behind you?) present a certain image that appeals to my conservative instincts. But I don't evaluate political leaders by how charming they are, or how good their hair is, or by the image their consultants carefully craft for them. I evaluate them by their policies, as all adults should. On that basis, when Perry has the same operational view of government and business as Mike Beebe, I rate him a 'fail'.

25 Comments:

Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

Giving Home Depot $1 million taxpayer dollars to open a store they were probably going to open anyway, and then they give your campaign $20,000. What kind of paranoid person could possibly see anything improper about that?

5:25 AM, August 07, 2011  
Anonymous Rick said...

I don't know much about the slush fund, so I will look into it. But, what I do know, Rick Perry is governor of a state that has created half of the total jobs in this country over the last 2 years. Oil and gas play's a small part of the success, but the biggest reason for creating jobs is the tax structure of Texas. It is pro business as well as pro individual,(no state income tax). Beebe is a big tax democrat. From what I see there is a huge difference between Perry and Beebe.

5:31 AM, August 07, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I keep hearing that line that Rick Perry's state created half the jobs in this country--but I read somewhere recently that those jobs are mostly low-paying or minimum wage jobs. How many of those jobs were taken by illegals? Is there a way to know that?

1:39 PM, August 07, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Funny that Home Depot is also part of the "sustainable development" Agenda 21 globalist agenda with their Home Depot Foundation to help fund "sustainable communities." Is there another dot to be connected there?

1:41 PM, August 07, 2011  
Anonymous Rick said...

I don't know about the pay of jobs created but I'm sure if you had a family to feed you would take what you can get. The biggest problem I have with Perry is his open border policy. The problem is both the democrat and republicans endorse it.

2:54 PM, August 07, 2011  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

Texas is either #1 or #2 oil producer in the nation. When oil is over $100 a barrel then of course they are going to do well in comparison to states that have no oil.

Is that Rick Perry's doing? Name for me one POLICY that Perry implemented that set Texas apart from the rest? Perry was dealt a great hand at the time the other states were out of cards. He gets credit for not screwing that up, but he is not responsible for their boom.

3:01 PM, August 07, 2011  
Anonymous Rick said...

Mark,Rick Perry would be crazy to change something that works. If it isn't broke don't fix it! The health care industry is larger than the oil business is Texas. Texas is pro business, period, that's why businesses move there. How many have left Arkansas and moved to Texas for tax reasons?

3:46 PM, August 07, 2011  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

Quite a few. But again, if he came into a winning hand then it does not tell us much about what kind of poker player he is. You can't say on one hand that he should be President because Texas' economy is doing so well, but then on the other say things were already great for Texas when he got there.

5:06 PM, August 07, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unless you think that all he has to do is get elected and keep things the way they are.

Come to think of it, that's what all the politicians do: get elected, and keep the status quo.

5:47 PM, August 07, 2011  
Anonymous Rick said...

If Perry hasn't tried to change the policies that work he must be for them. That's a sign of a good leader. I don't see how you can discard someone based on the success of his state. Should we discard Ron Paul because congress sucks? No we shouldn't. He has a history of supporting good policy and fighting bad policy. Ummm, maybe like Rick Perry?

6:08 PM, August 07, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe since he decided to run for president (while pretending he's not interested).

Pushing the trans-Texas corridor, marching to the tune of his NWO globalist buddies, and forcing young girls to get vaccinated for STD's as a quid pro quo for his pharma buddies is in no way supporting good policy and fighting bad policy. He's not worthy of being mentioned in the same sentence as Ron Paul, unless it's in the context of a drastic contrast.

3:58 PM, August 08, 2011  
Blogger Linton said...

"But again, if he came into a winning hand then it does not tell us much about what kind of poker player he is." Thank you for that Mark. That summarizes my thoughts on Perry.

That and this quote from an article on Politico:

"Multiple former Hutchison advisers recalled asking a focus group about the charge that Perry may have presided over the execution of an innocent man — Cameron Todd Willingham — and got this response from a primary voter: 'It takes balls to execute an innocent man.'"

Disgusting.

4:32 PM, August 11, 2011  
Anonymous Rick said...

I disagree that just because Perry walked into a winning hand you can't tell what kind of poker player he is. He has been governor for what, 12 years? He hasn't taken that winning hand and turned it into crap, that tells me a lot. Perry does have his policies that I don't agree with but so does Ron Paul. And I'm here to say Paul doesn't have a prayer of getting the nomination and its not because of the establishment. He comes off at times as a fruit loop and will never get the conservative vote.

11:37 AM, August 13, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My, how far the bar has been lowered for presidential caliber.

10:14 AM, August 14, 2011  
Anonymous Rick said...

Does that low bar include Ron Paul?

11:02 AM, August 14, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't believe Paul ever ran a state campaign for Al Gore or ever forced young girls to be vaccinated for herpes, but maybe I missed something...

5:17 PM, August 15, 2011  
Anonymous Rick said...

I don't believe Rick Perry ever co-sponsored a bill with Barney Frank that would legalize drugs on the federal level, but Ron Paul did. Every dope head in the U.S. must be supporting Ron Paul.

3:28 AM, August 16, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe you just haven't had your fill of the federal police state yet.

Funny how everyone gripes about nobody following the US Constitution, until it's their pet nanny-state issue that gets examined for validity.

2:47 PM, August 16, 2011  
Anonymous Rick said...

Actually I have but not sure about legalizing drugs. Whats next, gay marriage? Drunk driving? Where do you draw the line? Again, dopers have to love this guy!

5:20 PM, August 16, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a suggestion on where to draw the line: the Constitution. If we don't like something, we can always get it changed the lawful way.

I actually expect my elected officials to abide by their oaths of office.

11:31 AM, August 17, 2011  
Anonymous Rick said...

And what does the constitution say about illegal drug use, prostitution, drunk driving, gay marriage?

12:26 PM, August 17, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Exactly: The powers of the federal government are limited and enumerated. Please don't tell me you favor resident Obama's approach to the constitution?

3:17 PM, August 17, 2011  
Anonymous Rick said...

I don't favor anything Obama does, but you didn't really answer my question. How limited is the federal government? No drug policy, no gay marriage policy? Give me an answer, don't play politician on the question.

4:52 PM, August 17, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I fully answered your question. You just didn't understand my reply.

The constitution is silent on those issues. Either do what it takes to grant the feds power to intervene on those counts, or cut it out.

And, by the way, drunk driving isn't a federal crime (and neither is prostitution). Coincidentally, does that mean we all support drunk driving, because we aren't out lobbying to have it added to the endless list of unconstitutional enforcement empowerments of the federal government?

2:20 PM, August 20, 2011  
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