We're No. 1!

Nevada's liberal establishment loves to lament that Las Vegas is last in everything that matters (to them, at least). Not coincidentally, they'll think much more highly of their home state if everyone else would just give government more spending money.

They aren't likely to acknowledge a new set of rankings -- one that actually casts the city in a positive light and offers some hope amid this punishing recession.

The Aug. 2 edition of Forbes magazine has Las Vegas tied with New York City as the coolest city in America.


This wasn't the opinion of some staff writers needing to fill space. It was the result of a poll of more than 2,100 adults from across the country, conducted by a market research firm.

It shows that despite a torrent of discouraging national headlines that tout our nation-leading unemployment and housing woes, Las Vegas has a brand with remarkable resiliency. It remains a highly desired vacation and convention destination.

"It seems as though being negative on Las Vegas is somehow in vogue," said Jonathan Galaviz of Galaviz and Co. business strategy consultants. "Pessimism about Las Vegas is understandable, but we believe that it should be replaced with an optimistic view that the city is capable of quickly bouncing back.

"As long as the free market sees Las Vegas as 'cool,' the city will move forward."

For that to happen, though, prospective visitors need to have jobs. And the Democratic Party agenda of wealth distribution through higher taxes, and preserving public-sector jobs at the expense of private-sector positions, hinders recovery.

When our economy was healthy and growing -- and the tax burden was lower -- Nevada governments were No. 1 in spending growth. Back then, we were also No. 1 in job creation and business climate.

That's our road back to prosperity -- not becoming No. 1 in tax growth when businesses are struggling to survive.

We'll be fine if we can keep our cool.