Lobbies lobby lobbies, etc.

Washington’s cities, counties, ports, Indian tribes, public utility districts and school districts spent about $2.5 million lobbying state lawmakers during the regular legislative session — more than any other group.

That’s Washington state of course.  The details are here, and for the pointer I thank JS.

All the way down!

Comments

So lobbies representing the interests of ordinary people and Natives spend a lot of money... What's so interesting about that?

Where did you see that?

I see the lobbies representing against the interests of the ordinary people.

>Algona is a small town with an equally small dream: to build a community center. Located just south of Auburn, the community of 3,000 residents wants a stable location for its annual holiday social, Easter egg hunt and Halloween party.

Yeah, darn Big Small Towners, always mooching off the hardworking ordinary people!

Yeah, because small groups sucking at the teat of larger less interested groups is not the classic example of rent seeking?

A sample size of one - namely, Algona - is not statistically significant. "Washington’s cities, counties, ports, Indian tribes, public utility districts and school districts" ends up being pretty much everybody.

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Only if you operate under, for example, the notion that "school districts" are everyone associated with the school. I don't, of course.

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So, corporate lobbyists represent the interests of the corporation but city / town lobbyists don't represent the interests of their constituents?

Sometimes the constituents are those who would get to do the construction and collect high "prevailing" wages. And even if they truly represent their people, it's still rent seeking in terms of asking others to pay for it.

Lobbying, almost by definition, is rent-seeking. But as long as there are countervailing powers, who cares?

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And who do you think is one of the biggest groups demanding earmarks from their members of Congress?

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This was hilarious:

"Located just south of Auburn, the community of 3,000 residents wants a stable location for its annual holiday social, Easter egg hunt and Halloween party. This year, officials decided to do something about it: They hired a lobbyist to ask state lawmakers for $125,000 to design a building. [...]For $6 a person, if he’s successful in getting us that $125,000 in planning and design for this community center, that’s a real good return on investment,” said Mayor Dave Hill "

Someone should tell the Mayor that it's neither illegal nor immoral to have the city raise the money for their own project.

Someone should tell JWatts that it's neither illegal nor immoral for Auburn to lobby the Washington state legislature for the project.

I don't know, shouldn't state money be used for state projects? Do they collect more money than they can use for state projects simply because they can?

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This is the evolution of redistribution - first from rich to poor, because social justice, now generally from politically unfashionable people to politically fashionable people. I suppose it would be fair to say that the former was really just a specific application of the latter, though. And the latter, in fact, is just a restatement of the general rule of feudalism which we are regressing to.

Boy I sure hope one day I can be "politically unfashionable" to the tune of a $13Bn/yr carried interest tax loophole! I guess fashion's overrated.

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The "general business" and "insurance" categories spent more than $3 million combined.

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Even the American Association of University Professors, whose members include Libertarian economists, has a lobbyist.

Go to aaup.org and see if your institution is on the banned list.

But, you won't know how much the Koch Brothers actually paid in lobbying, as it is free speech, or how much they spent in supporting "Think" tanks supporting their views..

OMG, not the Kochtopuss!

At least it's not jizanthapus.

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Do you have any interests in the State of Washington? I don't, so I'm not exposed to the risk that my interests may be affected by legislative action. The Koch brothers do have interests, and from what I understand there are lobbies that would definitely like to infringe on their interests, if not take them away from them. They would be fools not to spend money to make sure their interests are represented to the legislators.

Why doesn't that argument also apply to town of Algona? Wouldn't it be a fool too to not have its interests represented?

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So, what's the political philosophy theory behind funds transferring between levels of government?

I think it is "never give a sucker an even break."

I tend to agree, but I also wonder how and why the Federal funding model works. Why don't people just ask to keep their own money? Does it somehow spiral out of control? By fighting for your money back does that reinforce the...ummm, I can't think of a better term than "circle jerk" somehow?

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OPM

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Let's not forget the resources expended by any state's executive branch lobbying the legislative branch. The average citizen doesn't have a chance against the army of government employees in the lobbying game.

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