I am a well known Liberal and I think government is a positive force if used correctly. I am left of center and proud of it because if we all don't prosper then society fails. If that means giving people a leg up with government aide then okay. The current stimulus funding and unemployment benefits are an example on a national scale.
Having said that I will also say I am against raising the New Mexico gross receipts tax to help balance the budget. It is just horribly regressive. I cant see any value in having this tax routinely hover between 7 and 8 percent. Not when the rich are still paying absolutely too little in taxes. The current rage over the so called 'tax lightening' in property taxes is really based in the inequity of the system. People with equally valued houses are paying vastly differnt amounts in taxes. Just like the gross reciepts tax, some people are paying a larger amount of their income (the poor) than others who bank away large chunks of cash.
Times are hard and we need to deal with it. I know that is easy to say but I also know from my career that there is indeed inefficiencies in government, just like any large business. We let the good times roll over the last ten years and didn't pay to much attention to growth of government. Now we have to do so. That includes concessions by organized labor, businesses with tax breaks, and tax payer subsidized non profits. This doesn't require a meat cleaver, just some thoughtful trimming and sacrifice. I hope the legislature and Governor can come up with solution. It certainly won't be easy. I think the task force that sent recommendations to the Governor had some great suggestions. That is a starting point.