Think Locally

Voters can probably have more immediate impact on local issues, and this is what got me out to the polls today. Utah is a strong Bush-leaning state, so my Presidential vote is much less likely to have results hinge on it than are my votes on a number of local issues.

(If I lived in Wisconsin or Florida I’d not be writing this)

Most significant: “Initiative 1” for a 1/20th cent additional Sales Tax to be spent on environmental preservation, education, and several other “feel good” things.

I voted against it. Taxation where the expenditures are NOT required to go through the same budgetary review as all the other expenditures is a Bad Idea. Sure, they put lots of touchy-feely stuff in the wording (“How can you vote against education?”) but I’d much rather have that touchy-feely stuff taken care of out of the REST of my local taxes — at the expense of less important things.

In the same spirit I voted against the Republican State House-of-Reps candidate in favor of the Libertarian. I’m all for small government. See, while neither Bush nor Kerry (nor Nader, nor anybody else on the Presidential ballot) has the power to significantly reduce the size of the Federal Government, local governments CAN be changed significantly. The cadre of hundreds of thousands of Federal bureaucrats nationwide are lifers. None of us voted THEM into office, and only a MAJOR shift in opinion in Congress, the White House, and the Judiciary can truly pare back on the rampant-and-arguably-completely-uncontrolled government spending we’ve seen since Franklin Delano Roosevelt tried to stop the Great Depression with federal projects.

The point is, while I can’t see to it that the Fed gets pared back, I CAN vote in favor of like-minded folks at the local level.

In other news, I heard that the Redskins lost, and that the incumbent President wins or loses his election on the most recent Redskins game. Fascinating. The Red Sox also WON, though, so I’m not placing any advance bets.


10 thoughts on “Think Locally”

  1. I just wanna say…

    I fell over laughing when the Redsox’s Cy Young award winner came out in support of Bush…

    Kerry must have had a stroke…


    I’m easily amused…

    1. Re: I just wanna say…

      That was amusing.
      And Howard, I personally agree with you in regards to Initiative 1 and you expressed my concerns regarding it and why I’m going to vote against it, as soon as I get off work. Here’s to see how well our voice will speak out. If nothing else we’ll be able to complain with the justification “I didn’t vote for that”. 🙂

    2. Re: I just wanna say…

      He and Bush are both almost certainly used to that by now. Between both of their hometown papers endorsing the other candidate, Bush Relatives for Kerry, Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, etc, it’s just part of politics and campaigning.

  2. I always liked the idea of the President having the power to obliterate bureaucratic agencies. Congress can fail to fund them, but then they just die a slow death, and who wants that? Lyndon Johnson suggested that it should be done once a term, just as an object lesson. I think it good advice.

    1. I wouldn’t mind this power, except for the fact of the existance of the Constitution Party (who, honestly, I could see pulling a Cromwell if their canidate ever made the presidency).

      Hell, the existance of the Constitution Party is also the reason why I’m still in favor of the Electorial College.

  3. From an AIM conversation this morning (edited):

    silkensteel: I hear on the news that Phila. area voting booths are busy as anything.
    jnork: Could be. Could be.
    jnork: I voted at 9am. Wasn’t a big crowd, but it’s not the busy time. A dozen or so people there.
    silkensteel: <nod> I’m glad to hear about the crowds. Philly suburbs may decide the state, according to The Media.
    jnork: Heh. How’s it feel to have the future of our country in your hands?
    silkensteel: ABSOLUTE COSMIC POWER!!!!!!
    jnorkie: Itty bitty living space.
    silkensteel: 🙂

    There weren’t any local issues to vote on here, though I’d have voted the way you did for the same reasons, and have made similar votes in the past.

    On the other hand, I’m in a major swing-state, and apparently in the best position to decide the vote, being in a Philly suburb.

    So if it makes you feel any better, my vote apparently counts for a lot in the presidential race this year, and I did vote. Silkensteel did also, by absentee ballot.

    It’s a weird feeling. I’m used to assuming my vote would be a statistical anomaly. Today it may actually mean something. It’s a bit heady, and a bit scary.

  4. I voted against it. Taxation where the expenditures are NOT required to go through the same budgetary review as all the other expenditures is a Bad Idea […]
    In the same spirit I voted against the Republican State House-of-Reps candidate in favor of the Libertarian. I’m all for small government. […]

    Damn, I knew there was a reason I like you. 🙂

    Er, another reason, that is.

    And, uh ….
    — I’m sorry. We’ll come in again.
    “Nobody inspects the Fannish Imposition! Our principal weapons are…”

  5. As a person who is not only rooting for the incumbant but also the Redskins (so shoot me, I’ve lived most of my life in the DC area and I’m a Redskin fan), I was disappointed in the ‘Skin’s loss. However, I take heart that this year curses have been lifted (Red Socks), and so there is a good chance that this curse shall also be lifted.

  6. Voting

    Good for you, Howard. I voted on 3 libertarians for various positions, even though none of them were actually *local* here. The nearest major libertarian branch is about 100 miles away, and our county didn’t get any candidates this time…

    I did vote for them for Senate, CU Regent, and president.

    I didn’t vote against that Initiative 1, but would have if I lived in Utah. I did vote against two Colorado Constitutional amendments which are just as bad, but ended up passing anyway. 35, not only puts an 80 cent tax per pack on cigarettes, but mandates that tax in the Constitution, and then mandates a certain amount that must be spent on specific programs. That’s never a good idea, because if it’s in the constitution it’ll basically live on forever even if the money is no longer coming in from cigarette taxes, and no one smokes anymore and needs those services. Ugh. Putting the taxes in the constitution is insane. 37 which mandates 10% of energy to come from renewable sources, then says they cannot increase the bills of consumers more than $0.50 per month. That’s the same sort of madness that caused the blackouts in california a few years back. Because renewables are so erratic, they’re going to have to build up the renewable energy to probably double (or more) the actual requirements so that it makes up for times when none of the renewable energy sources are putting power out. And Colorado PASSED both of these amendments because they were filled with all the same sort of touchy-feely stuff. Ugh.

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