In November voters will be asked to approve a state income tax. Of course, liberal supporters of Initiative 1098 try never to call it an income tax. The group supporting the initiative call their effort, “Washingtonians for Education, Health and Tax Relief.” And their chief spokesperson, Bill Gates Sr., never mentions “income tax” in his ads, he calls it, “Good for Washington.”
A reader from Cashmere asked me to review the Federal Trade Commission’s “Discussion Draft” on reinventing journalism. The document begins with a statement that seems innocent enough, “We seek to prompt discussion of whether to recommend policy changes to support the ongoing ‘reinvention’ of journalism, and, if so, which specific proposals appear most useful, feasible, platform-neutral, resistant to bias, and unlikely to cause unintended consequences in addressing emerging gaps in news coverage.” But a thorough reading reveals the real truth, having succeeded in nationalizing the automotive industry and the health industry, Federal bureaucrats are now setting their sights on the newspaper industry. The 47 page document ultimately degenerates to a massive expansion of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and a raft of proposals that will exacerbate the economic problems of the very industry they claim to need to reinvent.
I was more than a little stunned recently by Nancy Pelosi’s claim that her legislative efforts were just an attempt at living the Gospel. Pelosi is not the first political leader to claim that government mandated social programs are the “Christian” thing to do.
Two weeks in a row, I was taken to task on these pages. First, by publisher Bill Forhan and then by guest columnist William Slusher. I tell myself I should get used to it; a liberal in eastern Washington is a fish out of water. Then again, I’m also a liberal who weathered the conservative stronghold of Utah. You may as well be a libertarian in Seattle.
Chamber needs your help
The Oroville Chamber of Commerce isstruggling to find its identity – it has had trouble finding people willing tohold positions as officers and just last week the president, a frustratedRaleigh Chinn, announced his resignation.
Now the business organization findsitself rudderless, without a president and vice president. There’s still a goodgroup of people on the board, but the top spots go unfilled. The organizationjust doesn’t seem to know its purpose and just as many people on the board seemto want to disband as those that want to soldier on.
Astute readers of this page or my books know that I have too many incompatible views on religion, gays and many other subjects to be accurately labeled a conservative. Thus I do not write here in defense of conservatism, which has flaws that Chelan Mirror Editor Les Bowen has recently enumerated to varying degrees of legitimacy.
My liberal minded Editor in Chelan has challenged me once again to debate the merits of liberalism vs. conservatism. He begins by “setting the facts straight.” So let’s begin by conceding the facts we all agree on.
I recently hosted a community call in our legislative district. Thousands of constituents participated and, as I suspected, jobs and the economy and taxes and spending were the top issues facing our communities. During the call, I asked participants how they would prefer to solve the $2.7 billion budget shortfall. Here are the results:
The beauty of the Constitution is in its simplicity. The First Amendment is one sentence. My college English professor would say it is a horribly constructed run on sentence, but it is one sentence – clear, concise and to the point. Where we get into trouble is when we allow the lawyers to read things into it that are not there.
Time to prevent eminent domain abuse in Washington State
Washington State Attorney General Rob McKenna made an important announcement in mid-January. After two years of meetings, his Eminent Domain Tax Force is ready to ask legislators to pass two bills that could help to protect property owners from abuse of the eminent domain laws that allow local governments to take property for whatever use they deem they need it for.