Ah, another special session to promote economic development at the expense of free-market principles.It reminds me of the 2011 special session when Governor Jay Nixon called a special session to pass the China Hub bill. That bill went down in flames after the sponsor, Senator Chuck Pergason, decided that the future limits on tax credits he was promised weren’t worth compromising the principles on which he based his long-standing fight against tax credits. Not surprisingly, it’s hard to find anyone today who thinks that China Hub was a good idea. Governor Parson’s special session call also reminds me of recent Joe Biden / Nancy Pelosi policy, particularly student loan forgiveness and the so-called Inflation Reduction Act of 2022. Both fuel what may be the greatest threat to our future at this time – inflation. Quite appropriately, Republicans have denounced student loan forgiveness as unjust and are exposing the Inflation Reduction Act for the graft-laden mess that it is. It will be interesting to see just how many Missouri House and Senate Republicans see the similarities between the Joe Biden / Nancy Pelosi blunders and the largess in Governor Parson’s special session call. , And how many of the Republicans who aren’t particularly supportive of free-market principles will question more subsidies for the ethanol and bio diesel industries on the purely practical grounds that, when gas costs $4 and diesel $5, the bio fuel industry is already in the catbird’s seat? How many of them will understand that the things proposed in the Governor’s call will generate even more inflation, including the cost of food? How many of them will realize that government can’t prop up one segment of the economy without harming another? (As a cattleman, I can tell you I don’t like competing against the bio fuel industry subsidies for feed and fertilizer AND increased cost of equipment.) Hopefully, the Republicans who just stumbled all over each other convincing primary voters how conservative they are, will insist on standing with free-market principles by focusing on the tax cut portion of the Governor’s call and drop ALL of the largess.
Ron Calzone is a businessman and rancher in rural Maries County. For the past two and a half decades he has been an unpaid citizen activist spending a lot of time at the Capitol. Ron is also one of the founding directors of Missouri First, a free-market, constitutionally-focused think tank.