Many people in Nebraska have expressed dissatisfaction with the new state tourism ad “Visit Nebraska. Visit Nice.'' I would like to suggest a new tourism brand to be used in a marketing and promotional campaign: “Anything for a dollar.”
This idea came to me after observing the Nebraska Legislature in action. We have advanced a bill to repeal the motorcycle helmet law, knowing it will result in more deaths and serious injuries, because there might be some people who avoid riding their bikes through Nebraska because they are required to wear a helmet. These people might spend a dollar that we could tax.
Next we can’t get the votes to expand Medicaid even if the Federal government pays for it because some day they might stop. For this reason poor people are unable to get needed medical care.
The Legislature every year has to discuss how we really need expanded gambling because people are going to South Dakota and Iowa to gamble, and we are missing out on tax dollars. Even the most optimistic people admit that this will cause more problems with gambling addictions. The fact that the people have voted to reject expanded gambling should have settled this, but no — we might make a dollar taxing gaming.
Even when it appears they may do the right thing, the Legislature does it for the wrong reason. In the debate over the repeal of the death penalty the debate was over whether it might be cheaper to put people in prison for life instead of executing them. This was secondary to the fact that it is always wrong to take a human life, and the death penalty does nothing to deter crime.
Nebraska: “Anything for a dollar — as long as it lowers MY taxes.”