Maybe Sarah Palin is better than all the rest of us because she's a small-town hockey mom, Michael Kinsley writes in Time, but “spare us, please, any talk about how she is a tough fiscal conservative.” Palin’s state ranks first in the nation in taxes and spending per resident. The trick is that while Alaska spends lavishly on its residents, it gets most of the money from taxes on the rest of us.
Every year, Alaska takes more federal money per capita than any other state, and ranks No. 1 in the gap between what it sends to Washington and what it gets back. Palin touts that she has vetoed “nearly $500 million” in wasteful spending, but that’s less than 2% of the state’s behemoth budget. And forget Palin's feeling our pain on oil. “Alaska is, in essence, an adjunct member of OPEC,” Kinsley writes. The state takes in roughly 75% of the value of every barrel shipped out of the state.