Sunday, February 22, 2015

Politics and Snow

BBC asked me in the comment section of my Rudy post if things were going well.  I was not sure what he meant, so I am going to wing it with,  Fuckin 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.



Anonymous said...

Before I look it up I'm going out on a limb and say LePage is a Republican. He sounds like he is bought and being paid on the I'm for sale to the highest bidder plan.

MRMacrum said...

amidnightrider - Yeah, he's bought and paid for by the Right for sure.

BBC said...

No snow here this year but I'm sure our leaders will find a way to piss away the snow removal budget.

Nan said...

Republicans here in Michigan are pulling the same crap -- shifting more and more of the burden to local level, reducing taxes for corporations and the wealthy, and planning to increase the sales tax by 1%. The sales tax increase is being hyped as a way to get funding for infrastructure (roads and bridges) repairs and improvements but the last I heard they'd slipped in language that would let them use the money for anything they wanted to, which means the rural counties will never see a dime.

Don't know how the snow removal budget for our county is looking this year, but I do know it's always been tight. I think the grader I like taking photos of is old enough to vote, and it had to go through a couple winters with extremely iffy tires because the county couldn't afford new ones. IIRC the operator told the S.O. new tires would cost about $3,000 and there wasn't enough slack in the budget to get them.

MRMacrum said...

BBC - Leaders always find a way to piss budget money away. The term "carry over" is totally alien to them.

Nan - Sounds like your county is in a similar situation as our town. (here in Maine, counties are more just a unit of space - Towns pack the real power below state levels)

Per Capita income here in Acton is roughly $500 below the state average of $39,600. While on the coast, per capitas climb as high as $58,000(Yarmouth) and even higher in some locations.

Shifting more of the financial burden back to the local governments will create an even worse disparity between those who have and those who don't.

Ol'Buzzard said...

Doing away with state income tax might save me two hundred dollars, but the people making the big bucks would save thousands.

Yet; he was voted in again?????

the Ol'Buzzard

MRMacrum said...

Ol'Buzzard - It just boggles the mind.

Tom Harper said...

I can't believe LePage actually got re-elected. What were you Mainers thinking :)

This tax scheme, benefiting wealthier towns at the expense of the less affluent, sounds like a typical GOP approach. Current Republican policies can be summed up by reversing a famous quotation: Comfort the comfortable, afflict the afflicted.

Kulkuri said...

I see by your picture that you have about the same amout of snow as we had UP on the Tundra.

Wasn't your fearless leader elected in a three-way race again??

The rich love raising the sales tax because all the poor people have to pay it. You can't escape it like you can income tax based on your income being too low. And the rich don't mind paying sales tax because when they itemize their income tax return they can get some of that tax back.

BBC said...

I can avoid a lot of sales tax by buying good used stuff at yard sales.

PipeTobacco said...


I know it is bike season, but, damn.... I miss reading your posts. Try to get back to writing soon.