All politics is local

My state did great in terms of voting for political office, but utterly failed on most of the initiatives on the ballot. It doesn’t take a brain-rocket to figure out the disconnect between voter response and intention; the end product was to mandate the elimination of services people want, but did not realize would be affected by their choices.

Lacking a state income tax, Washington has one of the most regressive tax structures in the country, deriving much of its revenue from a sales tax; while an income tax for high income earners failed, most voted against it thinking that it’s passage would increase their own taxes, in spite of the fact that A) it had nothing to do with the sales tax and B) the initiative was capped to the upper income bracket and required a vote to be changed to include lower income brackets.

This went hand in hand with initiative 1033, which did pass, and requires a 2/3rds majority to approve any revenue increase for the state.  While this sounds reasonable on the face of it, in practice, since we’re already running at a deficit to begin with, we’ll have mass layoffs in police, health care and education following the first of the year.

Slowly but surely, people are gradually becoming aware of this, and becoming suitably upset — with the local government.

Maybe next time they’ll do more than watch the commercials.

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