Our children love the old animated Disney film Robin Hood with all the animal characters – foxes, bears, lions, chickens and snakes! Truth be told, I love watching it too. That film captures not only the romantic love of freedom and adventure that has marked Western civilization, but also reminds us of an age old truth: good citizens of Ye Ole England were sick and tired of having more and more of their money taken from them to fund government intervention in their lives.
I think Ye Ole Alabama is about the same. The gas tax is one example of a “big government tax” mentality that puts more emphasis on raising money through taking the hard earned dollars of Alabamians rather than seeking to give more freedoms to individuals and businesses. The free exchange of goods and services and the generation of revenue through people pursuing their vocational passions is the best recipe for economic strength. We have all witnessed the destructive effect of trying to “stimulus package” an economy – it doesn’t work, it causes soaring inflation, and it destroys the incentive to work and create new businesses. Funding government through involuntary taxes is built on the same concept and will produce much the same results. It will rob Alabamians of purchasing power, which in turn means less money to buy and sale and create healthy, sustainable economic growth through the sale of goods and services. It sets up the government with more power to try to strip away local control from our communities.
Alabama needs statesmen who will always go to the drawing board of ideas with the first and governing principle that the best people to spend Alabama money are Alabama citizens. The best role of government is to aid, support and HONOR their constituents by working WITH them to create solutions that do not take their money by force and that do not use tax dollars to force communities to violate their conscience and freedoms. By prioritizing the free operation of business and minimizing the burden of taxation, individuals and businesses will be freed to strengthen and stimulate the economy through the sale of goods and services. This will not only provide the money to run our state government, but will also strengthen the character and creativity our citizens.