Sunday, February 22, 2015
Politics and Snow
With the added insult of another 5 inches of white crap yesterday, it would seem this winter is making even the hardest core Mainer sit up and pay attention to it. It is beyond normal here. I tried to look up snowfall totals for Acton and all I got was "not available". Since I stopped keeping track a couple of weeks ago, I am sure we are in the 5 foot plus range now. When we switch from inches to feet it means there is a shit load of snow out there.
Today, we are suffering the first heat wave of 2015. The thermometer sunny side of the homestead read 52 whoppin degrees Fahrenheit. And even though the thermometer on the north side indicated a more realistic 24 whoppin degrees Fahrenheit, it was warm enough for me to blow snow not lookin like a toddler in a snow suit. Of course we are supposed to see the temps drop past zero again. Oh well, I'll take what I can get.
All this snow has a political side. Yeah, I just had to bring up politics. Anyway, most all town snow budgets for the winter are tapped out and are now taking healthy chunks out of the snow removal budgets for next year.
This brings sharp perspective to the plan of our governor, Front Page LePage, to shift more financial responsibilities back to the towns by not sharing the wealth accumulated by the state. From everything I can gather about his over the top complicated new state taxing scheme is he wants Maine to become New Hampshire East.
The towns with the fancy high priced homes and deep pockets will benefit, while the towns dealing with the typical rural Maine lukewarm times will find themselves even further outside the trickle up economy so many on the Right think will put us back on the top dog financial status we once enjoyed.
Lepage has the balls to say his new plan is simpler and will create a more "business friendly" environment when trying attract more businesses from away. Losing the income tax and replacing it with an expanded sales tax of 6.5 % that would include most but not all service businesses to add a tax to their bills. Lawyers would need to collect a sales tax, but doctors wouldn't. The tow truck guy would have to add 6.5% to his bill, but the garage he hauls your car to to get fixed would not. ....... Simpler? I don't think so.
I know the pols always pad their expectations with grandiose benefits thought up by the people who push the new whatever it is. But using this "taxation template" conjured up by some Winger think tank outside our state does not serve the specific needs and expectations of our state's population. An almost identical taxation plan was implemented in Kansas a few years ago has not come close to living up to it's hype.
Lepage is trying to sell the plan as good for all Mainers. Bullshit. This new plan heavily favors his rich puppet masters while leaving the average Mainer with less jingle in his pocket.