Skip to comments.Lansing Builds a 'Scaffolding for Plunder'
Posted on 06/08/2012 8:29:32 AM PDT by MichCapCon
Historian James Coffield once described the British income tax system as scaffolding for plunder. Michigan has its own version hordes of government tax-borrow-and-spend authorities like Downtown Development Authorities, Corridor Improvement Authorities and at least 10 others that get little public or media attention, have minimal accountability, and once created are almost impossible to dismantle.
A new bill introduced by Rep. Joseph Haveman, R-Holland, would create yet another version called neighborhood enhancement districts, with the power to impose higher property taxes (special assessments) to pay for a wide range of projects favored by local planners. The scheme is designed to empower locals to raise yet more money to enhance their area, but what it really enhances is local government taxes, spending and power. No vote of the people would be required.
The bill would empower local planners to borrow and spend for faddish projects such as pavilions, amphitheaters, snow-melt systems and surveillance equipment, the razing of nonconforming structures, and yet more government recreational programs and facilities. Governments could also increase property taxes without a vote of the people to promote the area, and to provide broadband or other telecommunications services.
There is much wrong with this bill.
It gives local governments yet another tool for dunning taxpayers, and does so during a trying economic time. Projects sold as enhancements necessarily diminish taxpayers: There are no free lunches, so ultimately this bill just transfers resources from the many to enhance a few. The value of this spending is highly dubious. For example, government-run recreation facilities and amphitheaters are notorious money losers that almost always require ever larger taxpayer subsidies to maintain. Even if they did generate revenue, that would just be an argument for leaving it to the private sector. In units with local prevailing wage laws, money may be wasted simply paying union scale wages for the construction projects and due to distortions that arise when government escapes its proper limits. For example, had not a state film subsidy program skewed local government incentives, the city of Allen Park would never have taken on massive debt for a film studio whose collapse has brought the city to the edge of bankruptcy and the appointment of an emergency manager. In addition to Rep. Haveman, this proposal is cosponsored by Reps. Lyons, Price, MacGregor, Crawford, Heise, Yonker, Wayne Schmidt, Roy Schmidt, Haugh, Shaughnessy, Kowall, Foster, Dillon and Howze.
...increase property taxes without a vote of the people...
Isn’t this why American colonists rejected the British monarchy?
Looting public revenues without the consent of the taxed sounds like and in fact IS institutionalized THEFT on a gargantuan scale.
It certainly de-legitimizes the individuals and government entities which propose and carry out such rapacious and unethical schemes.
This systematic exploitation of America’s taxpaying workers has by now thoroughly compromised our future and for decades to come !
Even voting is simply overridden.
“Town Votes Down Windmill Plan, Board Moving Ahead Anyway”
At this point... the concept of ‘Government’ is indistinguishable from ‘corruption’!!!
I was considering running for township supervisor after our current little emperor declared that he won’t allow any gas wells on private property in “his” township.
I was going to run with a “Your property, your business” motto but a better candidate has appeared and even adopted my motto.
Thanks for the ping; the article; your posts(4 & 6) ‘creek. BTTT!
Speaking of Plunder...
Socialism Is Legal Plunder
It is impossible to introduce into society a greater change and a greater evil than this: the conversion of the law into an instrument of plunder.
Above all, if you wish to be strong, begin by rooting out every particle of socialism that may have crept into your legislation. This will be no light task.
Quotes - Frederic Bastiat 1801-1850