Last November, my home state elected a new governor. The fact that he is a Republican is quite amazing. He defeated the incumbent millionaire Democrat even though the One came and personally stumped for him (perhaps that is wrong and I got it backwards). Since his election our new governor has become a shining star for fiscal responsibility. He is trying hard to pull my state back from the edge of financial ruin. He has fought the unions and bureaucrats to his own detriment. He claims that he’s working as if he’s only going to be a one term governor and is making the politically hard choices that we need. His courage is amazing. He is starving the beast in order to shrink it. He said something recently that I found rather noteworthy. His fight with the teachers unions has been particularly rancorous. The first counter to his tough position is ALWAYS – what about the children? The Governor said something that is worth remembering and dare I say worth turning into a guiding principle. He said, “Never listen to any arguments from people who have their hand in your pocket.” Don’t get me wrong here – I have the utmost respect for teachers. My eldest child teaches middle school. This principle needs to be applied to a vast range of people who are employed by our government (people who are paid from my tax dollars). How are any of these government workers qualified to have input about what they are paid and how valuable their particular fiefdom is? Each year at my job I meet with my manager and discuss my job performance. I’ve never had the opportunity to suggest how big my raise should be (I recently got my first raise in 4+ years). I would sound foolish to make any claims about how valuable I was to my department or the company as a whole. Why would my company’s management listen to my assessment? My opinion is biased. I naturally have a higher valuation of my worth than they do. The next time I hear someone arguing about state budget cuts, I’ll be sure to run it through the “pocket filter”. The argument may sound convincing, but the motives of the source must always be taken into account. It gets even more fun if you start applying this principle to Washington. I’m reminded of the old joke –

How can you tell if a politician is lying? It’s easy, just see if his lips are moving!

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