King County Executive Dow Constantine is giving his 2012 budget speech as I type, and—surprise—it's good news! No, our sucky economy isn't any less sucky, and no, tax revenues aren't much recovering. Instead, cost savings coming from health care reforms and other efficiencies have more than offset any anticipated shortfalls.

"We have 61 million reasons to thank our employees for partnering with us," Constantine emphasized, referring to the $61 million in savings realized from the "Healthy Incentives" health care reforms first implemented by former executive Ron Sims. "This is a budget of which we all should be very proud," kvelled Constantine in opening his speech.

A positive, cheery, budget speech that congratulates public employees instead of vilifying them. I don't know such a thing still existed.