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Wednesday, October 5, 2016

I'm Outta Here!

Thing are getting too expensive and the air is growing more fetid by the day so I'm leaving. I'll probably just delete this blog eventually.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Seattle Initiative 122: Local Campaign Finance Reform



Americablog
would democratize the city’s campaign finance system by giving each citizen a set of vouchers that they can choose to distribute among candidates as they see fit.
The Stranger
Jumped ahead to their section on initiative Measure 122
The Seattle Times
Opponents suggest that most voters won't participate, raising the question about what happens to the left-over money.
King 5 (NBC)
Opponents suggest the potential for fraud.
Crosscut
Suggests that candidates can choose to opt out of the restriction and the Wealthy still has the upper hand.
The Stranger
5th paragraph describes the lone vote against putting the initiative on the ballot
I'm sure by now a lot of Seattle citizens have sealed and deposited their ballots. If Initiative 122 passes, the next election will be a little different.

Some opponents suggest the potential for fraud. I'm wondering if the vouchers can be coerced from company employees into the candidate coffers of the employer's choosing?

And what happens if most of the voters don't even participate? Aside from the newly created job of administering the vouchers, what happens to the money that was left over from non-participating voters? Does it go back to the home owners who paid the tax?

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Should Washington State Lower Its Sales Tax?



WA 2015 election is under way
BallotPedia
The measure, upon voter approval, would decrease the state's sales tax from 6.5 percent to 5.5 percent, unless the legislature refers a constitutional amendment to the ballot requiring a two-thirds vote in the legislature or voter approval to raise taxes.
Progressive Voters Guide
Eyman’s initiative would create an $8 billion hole in our state budget over the next six years by cutting the sales tax by a full 1 percent.
WA Secretary of State
A complete list of proposed ballot initiatives including the name of the Primary Sponsor
Seattle PI
A report of wavering public sentiment about ballot initiatives, peppered with speculation about potential ethics violations.
WA State Republican Party
Ad Hominem commentary about Governor Jay Inslee. Same as Voters Want More Choices.
Washington State Republicans want to lower the state sales tax with I-1366, but is that part of the proposal just bait for the other part of the initiative? This is an interesting way to force the hand of the legislature.

Do you want a one percent drop in your state sales tax, followed by austerity measures to make up for the budget shortfall? Or, do you want to make it extraordinarily difficult for the state of Washington to raise taxes?

It depends on how much more you want to pay to support the infrastructure and bureaucracy of the state of Washington.

Costs will always go up to maintain the currently existing infrastructure. There are also current construction projects funded by taxes that will increase the size of the infrastructure, that in the future must be maintained with extra tax money.

Other states ruled by a majority of Conservatives suffered erosion on their rural roads and bridges, an inability to support emergency snow removal on rural roads, and other unforeseen consequences from lack of tax support outside of city limits.

Is Washington State at its maximum growth potential? Is the unprecedented growth of population on Puget Sound sustainable? How much longer before there are too many people here?

What typically follows a tax cut in a Republican dominated state government are cuts to social service programs. This  usually leads to fund reallocation toward building prisons for poor people, because at least they can get some cheap labor out of prison slaves.