Friday, October 12, 2012

More State versus Less Federal Government

I've got a bone to pick. What a silly way to say you've got a problem with something.

I've got a problem with the people advocating less Federal Government and more State Government.  It makes me want to scream,
     "Don't you want to live in one country?????"

Seriously, do the people clammering for more State Government and less Federal Government, want to live in a series of Luxemborgs and small nation states?

Do you seriously want to base the decision on where you live on the options provided to you by states rather than by the nation in which you live? Think about it. Think in depth about it. Think of the things that impact you.

Since I live in extreme western Kentucky, an area surrounded by many states, the issue of State Government is especially pertinent to the people of the region.

People that want to stay within, say a 100-mile radius of their family have the option of living in Tennessee, Arkansas, Missouri or Illinois. Even if the radius is much smaller, 50 miles, Tennessee and Illinois are options.

On the surface, you probably think, eh, wherever I get a job is where I'll live. Likely it'll boil down to that, but should it? With more State Government and less Federal Government, there are a lot of things to consider. "What," you may ask, "would cause me to target a specific state rather than another?"

How about schools? Roads? Utilities? Taxes? Judicial systems? Concealed Carry laws?

If you look at the median household income from 2011, Illinois ranks 18th in the nation while Kentucky ranks 47th. Which state do you think is going to have more money for schools and roads?

A few other things to ponder:

  • What type of education is mandated by the state?
  • What kind of pavement is standard for the state, i.e., do the roads last longer or develop bigger potholes, etc.? Which state do you cringe when you enter it because of bad roads?
  • Are the utilities run by a huge company or smaller local companies and what state taxes are included in the utility costs?
  • Is there a state income tax?
  • What is the sales tax for the state?
  • What kind of health care system does the state have?
  • What kind of voter ID is required in the state? 

Years ago, when we lived in Oak Ridge, TN, and had the Geo Metro that got 40 miles per gallon, we used to drive up to Kentucky every two weeks to buy groceries to avoid the Tennessee food tax of 7.25%. Kentucky doesn't tax food. Kentucky has a state tax, while Tennesseeans are fighting one tooth and nail. Yet, Kentucky's sales tax is traditionally much lower than Tennessee's.

My husband's mother qualified for excellent elder care in Tennessee. The same for my boss's mother in New York state. Here in Carlisle County, Kentucky, I can't find any agency to even get information from, much less actual help. Without me having to do phone marathons with Medicaid, you'd think the doctor's office would know, or there'd be a county office to help. The nursing homes my father qualified for in Kentucky were sad in comparison to the one he qualified for in Tennessee.

Lest you think I'm overlooking issues of rural versus urban, I'm not. I'm comparing issues based on similarities as much as I can. The best nursing home my dad was in, was in Martin, TN, a city of 11,416; the two that were pretty bad were in Paducah, KY, a city of 25,135.

Tennessee has a health care system called TennCare which handles the Medicaid benefits. It's been fairly controversial, but it's damn good. In fact, it's so good that residence requirements for participation had to be put in place due to the number of people moving to the state specifically for the health care.

Voter ID? If my mother lived in TN and actually wanted to vote, she couldn't. She doesn't own a valid state ID now. Even if she were of right mind to vote, you couldn't pay her enough money to get a photograph taken for the ID. Tennessee has passed draconian voter ID laws. Forget the fact that there are no proven cases of voter fraud to back the reasoning for the laws.

Have you got a relative that's driving you nuts because they won't stay out of trouble with the law? What are the sentencing requirements of the state? They vary state to state, you know.

You can legally carry a concealed weapon in Tennessee, with complementary privileges in Kentucky. When you drive into Illinois, you have to unload it and put it in a case.

I want to live in a nation. You can count me out of the camp squalling for less Federal Government and more State Government.

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