From the today's Sun Times Editorial. I wonder if people write this off as rants from Capitalists at the Commercial Club or just most don't read Editorials.
The message to the governor, the Legislature and Illinois citizens is brutal: "Illinois is headed toward financial implosion." And the messengers include some of the most august civic leaders and corporations in the state, all of whom belong to the Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago. They say unless something is done to curb government costs and increase government revenues the state is headed toward financial devastation that will sink future generations.The reforms aren't particularly complicated although the politics of implementing them sure is. But many other states have been through pension and school reforms. There is no shortage of good ideas here; just will.
Still, it is Blagojevich who is going to have to stanch the wounds. The programs the Civic Committee looked at include state pension plans, state employees' medical insurance, Medicaid and education. The committee says the cure won't be simple but it can be accomplished through a combination of changes to government programs and increases in the income tax and corporate tax and an expansion of the sales tax.
To Blagojevich this will be anathema: He has consistently promised not to raise taxes, but if the Civic Committee is right he may not have a choice. But state workers and their unions must realize that any tax increase can only be done in tandem with changes to government programs. "We need a tax increase but we also need reform [in the way government spends]," says W. James Farrell, retired chairman of Illinois Tool Works, who headed the committee. "Taxpayers are paying for generous benefits for state employees," he added, benefits very few taxpayers enjoy themselves, including rich pension and medical plans.