News broke this week that many children cared for in this state's foster care system are being mistreated.

The commonwealth has yet to guarantee that the money given to welfare recipients is spent on food and the like, rather than gambling, liquor, cigarettes and strip clubs.

Oversight is so poor at state laboratories that tens of millions must now be spent to fix the mess while many criminals -- who do pose a threat to public safety -- are being set free.

And, Massachusetts now has the unenviable reputation of being the state in which a lab was so filthy, the medicine it brewed for patients around the country killed them.

Despite paying billions in tolls, gas taxes and other tax revenues for the express purpose of fixing our crumbling roads and bridges, we now need money to fix what? Our crumbling roads and bridges.

The Big Dig continues to plaque Massachusetts taxpayers as officials in other states hold the project up as an example of what NOT to do.

The Legislature is just now looking at the overly generous pensions and benefits given to state employees for decades. These pensions will bind our fiscal hands for generations.

Shall we go on?

Our government, whether it is federal or state, has the obvious and incontrovertible responsibility of spending taxpayer funds correctly. They may not throw up their hands and say, "Oh gee, what a mess." The mess is theirs, it exists on their watch, and they need to clean it up.

Simply put, until Massachusetts politicians fix the great myriad of problems their poor decisions have enabled, don't ask for more money.

Considering an increase in the income tax is outrageous.

Cutting the sales tax is very nice but at least with the sales tax, people can choose not to purchase. What do we do about the higher income tax: Choose not to work?

It takes a lot of gall -- or is it selective blindness -- to take more money from taxpayers.

We say: Find the waste and fraud you are allowing to exist in our poorly managed system. That's where you'll find the tax revenue you're looking for.