There’s a recent story over at the Denver Post detailing the problems that Colorado Springs is facing with its budget:
More than a third of the streetlights in Colorado Springs will go dark Monday. The police helicopters are for sale on the Internet. The city is dumping firefighting jobs, a vice team, burglary investigators, beat cops — dozens of police and fire positions will go unfilled.
Having lived in Colorado, I know that Colorado Springs is the epicenter of ultra-conservatism. A big evangelical megachurch, formerly run by Ted Haggard. Headquarters for Focus on Family, James Dobson’s anti-abortion (and anti- most other things) group. The newspaper is very conservative, and their editorial cartoonist, Chuck Asay, is a teabagger. In short, it’s a place you’ll find a lot of people who consider taxes of any sort anathema, government is considered unnecessary, or mostly evil, regulation is bad, business is the answer to all problems, and everyone should be born again.
As the old saying goes, you reap what you sow. Yes, they recently voted down a tax increase, because “taxes are bad.” Now, they have to start doing without those things that “evil government” was providing. Street lights, firefighters, police protection. Parks and museums. Recreational centers and public transportation. There’s a lot of business based on tourism there, and that’s going to suffer. They’re going to find out what their “utopia” is going to be like, because, after all, this is what they’ve been saying they wanted. They’re finding out it sucks.