The Oregonian Editorial Board And Measures 66 and 67: Why I’m Reminded of Friends Who Cling to Abusive Relationships

Steve Novick

As you may know, I have generally had a very good relationship with the Oregonian editorial board. So it saddens me to see them on the wrong side of Measures 66 and 67, the measures I am currently working for. What’s particularly frustrating is that they seem to have been sweet-talked by some corporate lobbyists into believing that the same corporations who are pouring money into a Sizemore-style “taxes are evil and government is bloated” campaign are poised to turn around and throw all their resources into somehow getting voters to accept a mythical Kumbaya alternative to Measures 66 and 67 that will solve everyone’s problems.

All of us have had friends who, while otherwise smart and thoughtful people, have been in lengthy destructive relationships with bad-news boyfriends or girlfriends. They keep on thinking they’ll somehow change his or her spots. Makes you want to tear your hair out, and/or check them into some kind of destructive-relationship detox center. That’s how I feel about the Oregonian editorial board today. “When will you stop listening to these corporate lobbyists? Don’t you understand that they’ll never change? There are nice boys and girls who have good values. Why don’t you date one of them?”

The Oregonian wants to believe there’s some other way to prevent deep cuts to education, health care and public safety than by raising taxes on rich people and corporations. Here are a few of the reasons that they’re wrong:

We tried things the Oregonian’s way in 2003 and 2004 – and we lost. In 2003 and 2004, temporary, across-the-board tax increases were passed by the Legislature, with ‘business support,’ and then defeated at the ballot. The first time, the Legislature referred the measure directly to voters. The next time, the hard right anti-tax forces gathered the signatures needed for a referral. Some of the business organizations that the Oregonian editorial board is talking to gave their names to those measures, and some even gave token campaign contributions – but not nearly enough to support a serious campaign. We wound up throwing 50,000 people off the Oregon Health Plan, closing schools early around the State, and telling thousands of seniors and people with disabilities that we no longer considered them “disabled enough” to get assistance. If Measures 66 and 67 lose, the hard right anti-tax forces will be poised to refer any alternative tax measure to the ballot, and there is no reason to think we would not see exactly the same result as in 2003 and 2004 – especially since…

The tax opponents are running a campaign designed to prevent any tax increase from passing for the foreseeable future. The tax opponents’ campaign is not telling voters “we need some other kind of tax increase.” The ad on TV right now claims that the Legislature irresponsibly increased spending by billions of dollars. In fact, the tax opponents attack the Legislature’s past efforts to pass temporary taxes, saying, on the Oregonians Against Job-Killing Taxes web site, “voters have rejected income tax increases twice before, but the legislature keeps coming back for more.” If that campaign succeeds, it will be because a majority of voters will have been convinced that the state simply does not need additional money for vital services. In the capitol, no Republicans will vote for a tax increase, and it’s impossible to believe that Democrats in swing districts will vote yes during an election year. It’s extremely unlikely that any new tax will make it through the legislature and besides,

Oregon voters have proved time and again that if you ask them the same question twice, in rapid succession, they will give you the same answer, much louder, the second time. Whether the issue is hunting bears with bait (and bears and cougars with dogs), or tax increases (Measure 30 in 2004 lost by a wider margin than 28 in 2003), or “death with dignity,” Oregon voters have shown a strong tendency to say “what part of what we said last time did you not understand?” If voters oppose budget-balancing measures now, in which most of them will not see a tax increase, they will not support one in a few months. Therefore,

It would be fiscally irresponsible for the Legislature to do anything but start making cuts immediately if these measures fail. The longer the Legislature postpones making $727 million in cuts, the deeper the cuts will be as a percentage of the budget. If these measures are defeated, it is a certainty that the far right will refer any new measures. It will take time to gather signatures; it will take time to hold an election. Every day that goes by will increase the percentage of the remaining budget that $727 million represents. Since any second bite at the apple will likely lose, the only responsible thing for the Legislature to do is start cutting immediately.

As to the Oregonian’s comments about the kicker: First of all, right now it’s a red herring; there is no kicker to kick to transform into a rainy day fund—revenue estimates are dropping, not rising. Second, again, the campaign the anti-tax forces are running is designed to undermine any chance for a kicker-to-rainy-day-fund effort. Oregonians Against Job-Killing Taxes say that “the state already had $1 billion in cash reserves to spend.” If the tax opponents succeed in convincing voters that the State had plenty of reserves already, why exactly would voters think we need to convert the kicker into a rainy day fund?

Secondly, the Oregonian should remember that the kicker did go to the ballot in 2000. The Republican Legislature referred a measure to put the kicker in the Constitution. It passed overwhelmingly. The Oregon AFL-CIO, the League of Women Voters, and John Kitzhaber submitted voters’ pamphlet statements against it. None of the businesses or business organizations now opposing 66 and 67 – who have apparently convinced the Oregonian that they are eager to support kicker reform – even bothered to shell out the few hundred bucks it takes to do that.

Penultimately, it’s important to note that the Oregonian wants to believe there’s a “better way” – but has no suggestions as to what that “better way” might be. Do they want across the board tax increases? We tried that in 2003 and 2004; California just tried it last year. We lost; they lost.

The Oregonian objects to a tax on corporations that isn’t just based on profits. Aren’t they aware that every other state has such a tax? Or that even the House Republican plan in 2007 was based on gross receipts, as was the Oregon Business Association plan in 2009? In most states corporations pay sales taxes on the materials they buy – a tax that isn’t based on profit, and which is on average, the second-highest tax corporations pay. (If we adopted a 5% sales tax tomorrow, it would be a $2 billion a biennium tax increase on business – although our taxes on business would STILL be below average.) In the other non-sales tax states – well, Delaware has a gross receipts tax much bigger than our new graduated minimum; New Hampshire has a corporate enterprise tax based largely on payroll; Alaska and Montana, as mining-and-oil states, get a lot of money from corporations through extraction taxes.

Finally, the Oregonian is ignoring the many public-spirited business people and rich people who are supporting Measures 66 and 67. What about the Tim Berrys, the Arthur Grahams, the Debra Motts, the Bob Burys? What does the Oregonian think they are, chopped liver? No, they’re not. They and the rest of the 60-plus businesses who’ve endorsed a Yes vote are nice, smart people who recognize that businesses and rich people who have benefited the most from living in a civilized society can give a little back to support the continuation of civilization. Who recognize that businesses benefit from the existence of an education system, and a public safety system, and that moving from 48th to 46th in the country in taxes on business is not too high a price to pay to preserve those services. They – not the corporations pouring money into the anti-tax campaign – are the Oregonian’s natural allies. They’re the nice boys and girls the Oregonian should be dating.

Comments

  • Garage Wine (unverified)
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    The Oregonian hit the nail on the head.

    The Legislature had a chance to put in some temporary tax increases that would have had all but the most active anti-tax advocates on their side.

    Instead, they decided that now was the time to extract as many pounds of flesh from businesses, "the rich," and anyone else that progressives deem don't pay their "fair share."

    And it has blown up in their faces.

    People said that George W. Bush was good a tactics, but terrible at strategy. The same could be said for those who follow Rahm Emanuel's advice to "Never let a serious crisis go to waste."

  • Cheesus Cripes (unverified)
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    So, Garage Wine, you're saying that you and Oregon's business associations would have supported raising taxes during a recession, and only during a recession?

  • ThinkOregon (unverified)
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    Prior to The O's announcement, ThinkOregon asked: will 2010 be the year that Oregonians finally place economic sustainability on par with environmental sustainability?

    It was a question echoed by Professor Timothy Duy, Director of the Oregon Economics Forum at the University of Oregon, in a December 17th presentation to the Westside Economic Alliance.

    ThinkOregon has advocated for sometime now that Oregon adopt economically sustainable practices on the scope and scale afforded the environment; creating a supportive business climate in which employers are able to create new, living-wage jobs.

    I won't clog up the comment board, but you can read the rest here:

    Will 2010 Be The Year That Oregonians Finally...

  • Cheesus Cripes (unverified)
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    I won't clog up the comment board, but you can read the rest here

    You're clogging up something, dude.

  • mp97303 (unverified)
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    What’s particularly frustrating is that they seem to have been sweet-talked by some corporate lobbyists into believing that the same corporations who are pouring money into a Sizemore-style “taxes are evil and government is bloated” campaign are poised to turn around and throw all their resources into somehow getting voters to accept a mythical Kumbaya alternative to Measures 66 and 67 that will solve everyone’s problems.

    It is utterly inconceivable to you that you might ever be wrong, so therefore, anyone who disagrees with you must so feeble minded as to be swayed by evil sweet-talk.

  • Ricky (unverified)
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    Sorry Steve, but your recent postings show you are too emotionally attached to the measures passing to even begin to sound reasonable. The Oregonian Editorial Board did a fantastic job of summarizing what is going on. Measures 66 and 67 have become personal to you. Not a good sign. And who honestly among us isn't cynical enough not to chuckle softly every time someone claims these measures are for the children, our schools, and (chuckle) our health care. They may pass, they may not. Will the sky fall either way? Nope. But given the choice of feeding a bureaucracy or reigning in government spending during tough times? I'll choose the latter and vote NO.

  • LT (unverified)
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    One of the top Midvalley stories according to the Statesman Journal is

    Sanyo Solar of Oregon LLC opens a $40 million plant in Salem.

    Yet Think Oregon talks vaguely about the business climate for large corporations.

    Is Sanyo not a large corporation?

    More importantly, is "business climate" a checklist that if Oregon checked off all items all large businesses would think of locating here because there are no other factors other than on the "business climate checklist" that any business ever considers?

    Would educated workforce be on that list, or only low taxes, low regulation, and tax breaks?

    Who would write that list, and why would all large corporations give their decision-making power to the writer of that list?

    Or is this all about theory, and practical logistics don't matter?

  • LT (unverified)
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    Think Oregon, do you want to run DUY for the legislature?

    What is it in your background (are you one person, a group, a lobbying firm, or what?) which causes you to say

    "ThinkOregon has advocated for sometime now that Oregon adopt economically sustainable practices on the scope and scale afforded the environment; creating a supportive business climate in which employers are able to create new, living-wage jobs. "

    and believe that A) everyone will sign on to that without details

    B) if every aspect of your wish came true, what would the measurement be?

    Cutting unemployment in half in __ amount of time?

    Or some other measure?

    Or should't the efforts be measured because that is a detail and you don't believe in details?

  • ThinkOregon (unverified)
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    Generally accepted definitions: + $500M is an Enterprise class business, $50-$500M is Mid-Market and $50M and below is considered a Small Business. Oregon is woefully lacking in the middle market tier and bottom-heavy smallest. In fact, there is a more granular definition that fits Oregon small businesses SOHO: fewer than 50 employees with annual revenues less than $5MM... but that's just a refinement upon a broader theme.

  • ThinkOregon (unverified)
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    LT ... TO is one person, no funding. It's on the left hand side of the blog.

  • ThinkOregon (unverified)
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    LT ... sorry, one last thing. I read Tim's work. I know some of his students. I've never met him, but I will say this: he appears to be clear thinking, courageous and unaffiliated with any political group. His credentials suggest that he will be a player in the region for quite sometime ... if he decides to remain here.

  • Bill McDonald (unverified)
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    Steve, I think after your gushing love post to Peter Bhatia a few weeks back, the Oregonian editorial board had to oppose you for the sake of their own dignity. Maybe it was their way of saying, "We're just not that into you."

    I know you're a smart guy so you had to have asked yourself, "I wonder if this blatant ass-kissing of Peter Bhatia will appear too transparent considering the paper is a few weeks from taking a stand on my pet issue?"
    
    If the answer was, "No way" then you must think Portland is a pretty dumb town.
    
  • UpandDown (unverified)
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    I can't wait until their is a kicker bill in front of the Legislature and OBA and all of their other corporate lying buddies stand up and oppose it. Then maybe the Oregonian will realize how they have been duped.

    This ridiculous behavior is only one small reason that the Oregonian and other papers are going the way of the do-do bird. How low is their circulation now? Does the opinion of a traditional editorial board even matter with all the new media? How many Legislative races have they endorsed a losing candidate OR has their endorsement played a role in the campaign? Steve, what do you think - does this even matter?

    How can a group of smart, educated, and somewhat reasonable people sit around a table and oppose something that asks very wealthy people to pay a little more AND INSTEAD propose to tax single mothers making $10/hour???? Embarassing...

  • LT (unverified)
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    TO--do you mean the U of O Tim Duy who has this quote on his website?

    " About Economics

    The ideas of economists and economic philosophers, both when they are right and wrong, are more powerful than is commonly understood. Indeed the world is ruled by little else. Practical men, who believe themselves to be exempt from any intellectual influences, are usually the slaves of some defunct economist.” - John Maynard Keynes.

    It may well be that he is the most important academic economist in Oregon.

    But unless there are legislators who follow his work and quote him, "His credentials suggest that he will be a player in the region for quite sometime "

    your comments about him may be more wishful thinking than actual fact.

    I suspect there are legislators who are "the slaves of some defunct economist"

    but whether any 2 people would agree on who those legislators are is another story.

  • ThinkOregon (unverified)
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    LT ... you wrote about Tim Duy: "...but unless there are legislators who follow his work and quote him..." how pitifully wrong you are. Regional business leaders enlist his counsel... hence the quotes from the Westside Economic Alliance. Politicians follow from those actions; not the other way around. BTW ... re-read your assertions. I didn't say what you said I said.

  • RyanLeo (unverified)
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    Steve Novick,

    Quoting you "So it saddens me to see them on the wrong side of Measures 66 and 67." A few questions arise that may seem basic, but I do not want to assume:

    1. Are you being paid for by any organization or individual who is promoting Measure 66 and Measure 67 with their organizational resources (dollars and manpower)?

    You are a very educated man and I am sure that you are fully aware of the cognitive dissonance. In other words, holding two contradictory ideas simultaneously. For example, liberal political activists with PhDs have no qualms about being paid to promote by union dollars, yet denounce scientists with PhDs who are paid to research by industry dollars.

    1. Would you not consider your stance in politics, when paid to do so, equivalent to scientists who are paid to do research by oil companies and other natural resource extraction organizations?
  • RyanLeo (unverified)
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    The dissonance arises from the fact that despite whether one is a political activist or research scientist, their work promotes and buttresses a certain view held by their funders. This is where they are one and the same.

    Many will say "Well political activism and scientific research are apples and oranges!" No, they are not. Scientists are educated just like political activists whose biases and world view gets enmeshed in their work despite their best intentions to randomize or "select" it out. The methodology, the hypotheses, the lens one uses to analyze results and discussion, and additional questions one asks during the course of research is all tied to one's world view, which is a complicated mess of biases and politics.

    If science was apolitical, then why does one side denounce industry scientists as paid shills?

    It all has to do with pushing a certain world view. It is all political.

  • Chris Kloor (unverified)
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    Cry baby cry!!!!

    It's funny that liberals are so willing to bash their holy "O" for taking a rational positional on a irrational ballot measure.

    Chris Kloor ( I do not speak for my brother, Jon or my family...I simply do not want to lose my job to support bigger governement)

  • LT (unverified)
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    Ryan, where is your proof of this:

    "liberal political activists with PhDs have no qualms about being paid to promote by union dollars, yet denounce scientists with PhDs who are paid to research by industry dollars".

    Is there, for instance, no PhD in Oregon who has been a private sector researcher (or even started/ run a company) who has ever been active in Democratic politics?

    Is this state really divided into pro-union and anti-union given the number of people who don't register to vote in a major party?

    Could it be you need to get out more among people who are not as politicized as you (estimates go from 70% to over 95% of the public aren't really partisan anything, but rather place politics as a low priority in their lives.

    TO, " His credentials suggest that he will be a player in the region for quite sometime ... if he decides to remain here. "

    sounds fairly vague. Who are the top 20 "players" in Oregon, and by whose definition, for what reasons?

    Are volunteer groups (civic groups like Rotary and city clubs, young activists like the Bus project) "players"?

    What about university presidents from private universities--Willamette, Linfield, others?

    But then both of you seem more angry than solution-oriented.

    Have either of you worked on campaigns? Or are you mainly bloggers?

    Try working on a campaign this year--you will find it fascintating.

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    Steve,

    You are absolutely right about this one. I conisdered writing a post myself today recounting all of the self-righteous Oregonian editorial over the past decade scolding the legislature for its unwillingness to show some backbone, be responsible, and enact tax reform to protect schools and essential human services.

    Here we finally have legislative leadersnip with the guts to stand up to the corporate lobbyists and the Oregonian turns it's back on them. Classic. Absolutely no intellectual consistency.

    This is especially preposterous after the Oregonian story where Mike Salsgiver, Executive Director and lobbyist for the big construction companies, admits the only reason he and other corporate lobbyists pushed this on the ballot is "relevance". And as the article points out, big business wanted a tax increase on working and middle class Oregonians instead of themselves.

    I mean hello? That is what the public has been screaming for - elected leaders who will stand up to the big money, big business special interests on behalf of the rest of us.

    That editorial goes in the all time hall of Oregonian shame.

  • Joe Hill (unverified)
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    Once again, with due respect to Steve (whom I supported FWIW with a little cash and volunteer time in the Senate primary), I honestly don't understand those people who don't understand the Oregonian's position.

    Weren't you in school the week in economics and/or government that you studied the corporation and the theory of the firm? Or history class when they went through all those corporation-empowering decisions from the late nineteenth century to the scandalous situation now on the Supreme Court where the U.S. Chamber of Commerce basically owns even the leftmost member (that would be Ruth Bader Ginsburg)? Why are you straining to develop exotic theories (they'll find out that business won't really support kicker reform!) when Occam's Razor suggests that the simplest, most obvious explanation is much more likely?

    The Oregonian is not only a corporation itself, employing at its decision-making level several rich people who would be materially affected by these laws and (more importantly) whose social networks would be affected by these laws . . .

    . . . but also the Oregonian exists in an increasingly precarious economic position beholden to other corporate interests who are in a position to exact whatever price they like if the Oregonian might be of a mind to defy them, which it is not.

    In the words of Guido the Killer Pimp, "In a sluggish economy, never fuck with another man's livelihood."

    It might be well to recall the fable of the tortoise and the scorpion.
    (I'm copying the following from another site, but it's generic wording, I think, most people know this fable.)

    One day a scorpion who wanted to cross a pond found a tortoise and asked it for a lift to the other side. (scorpions can't swim.) The tortoise could hardly believe his ears. "Are you kidding me? You're a scorpion! You'll sting me while I'm swimming and I'll drown."

    "My dear tortoise," laughed the scorpion, "if I were to sting you, you would drown and I'd go down with you. Now where is the logic in that?"

    "Hmm. You've got a point there," reasoned the tortoise. "Hop on."

    The scorpion climbed aboard and halfway across the pond, he carefully aimed his powerful stinger, gave that tortoise everything he had, and they both began to sink to the bottom.

    Resigned to his fate, the tortoise turned to his attacker and said, "Do you mind if I ask you something? You said there was no logic in your stinging me. Why in the world did you do it?"

    "It has nothing to do with logic," the drowning scorpion replied. "It's just my nature!"

    COPY OFF

    So you see, the Oregonian can't help it. It is what it is, a machine for offloading costs, maximizing profits, fetishizing inert things, and serving the interests of the rich.

    So why would we be surprised when the scorpion acts according to its nature? It is what it is.

  • (Show?)

    Steve,

    The Oregonian just shows its increasing irrelevance. In the SE, the Yes on 66 and 67 signs are everywhere. These measures must pass or Oregon will continue its decline into irrelevancy.

    We're number 48! We're number 48! Let's go for 50!

  • DDD (unverified)
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    Why do the arguments of Steve, Joe Hill, Paul G., and several others here seem to have the same stench that the we heard a bunch of feckless defenders of this shameful health reform bill make? That is, the proponents make arguments that this must pass just because it must, it's "us" against "them". I'm planning to vote for M66 and M67, and even I am starting to get disgusted at the condescension and obnoxiousness of many of the vocal M66/M67 supporters.

  • Joe Hill (unverified)
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    Hi DDD.

    (1) I've been pretty clear that in my opinion the "health reform bill" is a frakking disaster and I think Bernie Sanders or Al Franken or somebody should have torpedoed it from the left. So, whatever that particular stench was, he who smelt it, dealt it. Innocent.

    (2) Measure 66 and 67 has to pass because it's us against them? No, it has to pass because otherwise lots of people will lose their jobs and the already very bad situation of Oregon education will become three or four clicks worse. Innocent.

    (3) However, on the ontological question, is it in fact "us" against "them?" As a conflict theorist, the answer is "hell yes." Guilty. Just check 30 years worth of diverging numbers or the latest Gini coefficient. There's lots of evidence.

    If this is disgusting or if you identify it as obnoxious, then I am genuinely sorry for the offense (I meant none), but that alone is unlikely to change my conviction in the matter.

  • Jim (unverified)
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    Us against them? No, no, no, of course not! We are all one happy family! There are no classes!

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    This from the same outfit who brought you the sham of an endorsement of Ron Saxton.

    And people wonder why legacy media outlets like the Oregonian are circling the drain.

    Great post, Steve.

  • Brig. Peri Brown, Purity Troll Brigade (unverified)
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    It's the same reason some women date guys with goatees, even though they're announcing to the world that they intend to be the biggest jerk they can be. Cronyism is the name of the game, and these poor, misguided folks think that the jerk will treat everyone else that way. Kind of a perverted take on "good provider". "Hey, this guy's a jerk and always makes sure he gets his first; stick around and you'll never be without". What they fail to realize is that they will be spending most of their time with each other, and she will be the target of his behavior, not everyone else.

    That's why the Oregonian still saddles up to powerful interests, imho. That is why we don't have term limits. "You need an experienced legislator (read, "real jerk"), to deal with the others". Same bad assumption, those that fight term limits don't seems to realize that the target of that experience at manipulating perception and persons will be his/her constituents.

    I agree with the sentiment expressed. It applies to blogging to, and you'll not find me responding to a certain bratty regular's posts. The abusive noise to signal ration has become unacceptable. My SO has sworn off the whole blog for the same reason. As always, most Dem talking points could be more taken to heart by the speakers.

  • Kurt Chapman (unverified)
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    Further up in the string a poster aserts that the legislature has finally been decisive and bold in approaching tax revenue reform. The true situation could not be further from the facts. Once again a listless legislature has propped up big spending and failed idealology with a narrowly aimed tax at 3% of our population.

    Our tax system in Oregon needs wholesale reform. It appears that only impending disaster and doom will prod this bunch of democrats and republicans into action. Where were the calls for revenue stability and reform in 2006 and 207 when revenues were well above prediction? Nowhere.

    I am torn over 66 and 67 because their failure at the polls will create a firestorm of further cuts in Salem. The cuts will most likely be in all the wrong plces disproportionately hitting public education, public health and public safety. The hundreds of millions in new spending enacted in the 2007 budget should be the first programs means tested and jettisoned. They will not be.

    True reform is the srious consideration of a sales tax that exempts basic food, housing and medicine and allows for an exemption against the first $15k in earned income on the state income tax. Will we get there? Probably not with the current pack of 'leaders' we have elected.

    steve is a paid lobbyist for yes on 66/67 he passionately advocates for wht he believes is the only salvation in this budget cycle. It is a Hail Mary pass and bad public policy in anytihng but a temporary format.

  • DDD (unverified)
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    Joe Hill, I understand your last comment, and appreciate your sincerity you didn't MEAN to come across as I think a lot of people might perceive. But that comment illustrates my point how proponents miss the point why the O's editorial legitimately resonates with a lot of people who support or stand to benefit from M66 and M67.

    The real problem with this bill, as with the health care bill, there's no overriding admission that because this is ALL the overwhelming Democratic majorities in Salem in 2009 and in DC in 2010 gave us, they are failed leaders. Proponents show that by not engaging as equals in the public debate by first refuting the legitimate points the O editorialists admittedly randomly scatter sparsely through their piece before making counter-arguments. Instead, what comes through is a high-handed argument that clearly only THEY the proponents care about all those who these bills would benefit, pointing to benefits that are far less then would be achieved by long gone authentic leadership of a Democratic Party that actually embodied the values of working and poor people.

    Instead, it all comes across as little more than excuse-making for leaders representative of a entitled, privileged segment who don't have a clue how to lead competently enough to give even the plausible appearance they aren't just condescending.

  • Bill McDonald (unverified)
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    What did people expect? The new publisher of the Oregonian comes from the Orange County Register. That's not exactly Mother Jones.

  • George Anonymuncule Seldes (unverified)
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    Nobody in Oregon should be surprised by the paper that tried to present Gordon Smith as the answer to Oregon's prayers for all those years. The Oregonian is failing faster and faster each year, and my only regret is that I can't cancel again whenever they run this nonsense.

    What most people seem totally unaware of is that most of the cuts that failure of M66/M67 will engender will lead to double or triple the cuts because it comes out of general fund money that is used to get federal match money. The cuts to human services will be much greater than is being presented, because nearly all of what DHS spends goes into federally matched accounts.

  • Vote Yes on Measure 66/67 or We Screw Your Children; Vote No or It's the Gr (unverified)
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    enough to give even the plausible appearance they aren't just condescending.

    And that is precisely why a lot of Pro M66/67 people have taken exception to the "pro" scrum on BO. In fact, the general condescending tone has grown with the campaign. I felt like the "Farmer to Farm Board" post was the best example I've seen where there could have been some good communication that was totally lost in the dismissive and proudly contemptuous attitude that was on display.

    And people wonder why legacy media outlets like the Oregonian are circling the drain.

    As opposed to when they were riding high. THEN, they were giving us a quality product! Puhleeze... You really believe that industries get what they deserve? This PT (proud triumphalism) attitude gets thin awfully fast. A little less PT behavior on BO, please? It must feel quite nice, as there seems to be little regard for how much it undercuts your own position. One would think the official, unofficial Dem handlers would have something to say. At least I assume, being the official, unofficial Dem blog in Oregon means there is some communication.

  • (Show?)

    Some would argue that the need to keep the concentration of wealth at the very top for nearly 5 decades is not visible to many No voters.

    The lead line in the editorial, "They chose to pit business against schools, the private sector against public unions, employees against the jobless." could be written another way.

    Freedomworks under Dick Arney's leadership, with the proud assistance of their employee Russ Walker, Vice-Chair of the Oregon Republican Party chose to make painful and rediculous claims about the impact of Measure 66 and 67.

    Sidenote: The Oregonian endorsed Nixon.

  • Joshua Welch (unverified)
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    This couldn't be a more clear cut example of an institution which claims to represent the public interest, the greater good, actually doing the exact opposite. This is a despicable failure of the fourth estate to fulfill it's obligation to the people. I won't spend a penny on this pathetic excuse for a newspaper and I hope many others choose to do the same.

    Obviously Oregon desperately needs journalistic leadership. It would be nice to see progressives invest in a Huffington Post-type of internet/print newspaper that would actually represent the public interest, the greater good.

  • Galen (unverified)
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    "We're number 48! We're number 48! Let's go for 50!"

    Oregon is number 51 when you include Washington DC in the happiness index. The stats are based on unemployment and foreclosures. Bad financial policy in this State is a contributing factor. Also a tax gross sales receipts is bad financial policy period.

    It is time to stop growing government. More government & taxes translates into less freedom once we move beyond the basics. If you do not understand what government was created for and what freedom is you will not understand that statement.

    I will give you a few hints:

    "Government is not reason, it is not eloquence, it is force; like fire, a troublesome servant and a fearful master. Never for a moment should it be left to irresponsible action." George Washington

    Revisionist historians educated by the lobbyists' influence will argue of course he is not a founding father or that he did not make this statement. How bold is that? They in turn will turn around and say everyone else is bought and paid for when in fact their own mind contrary to their own understanding has already been indoctrinated.

    Freedom is basic: Your ability to go about daily activities with minimal fraud or coercion. The less fraud and coercion you experience, the more free you are.

    Financial freedoms people are essential to social freedoms. Educate yourselves there is a reason one party purports to be for social freedoms and the other for financial freedoms. They cannot exist one without the other. Ponder on that a bit before you fire back with anger and emotion.

  • Joe Hill (unverified)
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    OK, coach me up on this whole "condescending tone" business, seeing as I think I'm one of the chief sinners.

    Why do I think the left should care about this? Well I was reading yesterday a post on FireDogLake from the interesting and infuriating Michael Berube who argued:

    "Basically, the argument there is that in US politics, the left shouldn’t think of the not-left masses as American sheeple who are duped into Birtherism or Tea Party madness by the machinations of Fox News. Now, I enjoy mocking wingnuttery as much as anyone, and I know that the US mass media are largely terrible. (That’s why I turned to the blogosphere.) But my analysis starts with a simple but profound remark from one of Stuart Hall’s major essays, criticizing the tenacious leftist belief in “false consciousness”: “The first thing to ask about an ‘organic’ ideology that, however unexpectedly, succeeds in organizing substantial sections of the masses and mobilizing them for political action, is not what is false about it but what is true. By true I do not mean universally correct as a law of the universe but ‘makes good sense,’ which — leaving science to one side — is usually quite enough for ideology.” The point is that one has to try to learn from the tactics of one’s political opponents, as Hall did with Thatcherism (and as no one in the US tried to do with Reagan or Bush) — not to emulate them, but to find out how they work and how best to counter them."

    So, in that spirit, I want to learn.

    First: for those who feel that this campaign is condescending, can you point to specific elements that you can identify as condescending?

    Second: are you arguing that you agree in principle with the arguments of the left that money generally needs to be redistributed downward, but that you feel that the tone of the left is arrogant and off-putting and you dislike being in its company? Or is the "condescension" argument an ad hominem stalking horse for your real position, which is that capitalist interests ought to be protected against social interests?

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    Or is the "condescension" argument an ad hominem stalking horse for your real position, which is that capitalist interests ought to be protected against social interests?

    Ding!

  • Joshua Welch (unverified)
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    It seems that too many of us don't see a difference between a sacred duty and a job, between selling mailboxes at the hardware store and educating our children, between a police officer and a car salesman. If they do understand the difference, ya sure can't tell.

    W shouldn't wonder why we lag so far behind other industrialized democracies in so many of the categories that matter. Infant mortality, healthcare, education, poverty levels, crime levels, gender equity, etc. It's partly due to the corrupt system which facilitates corporate bribery, but it's also due to the millions of selfish, anti-government minions and ideologically bankrupt institutions like the Oregonian editorial board.

  • Kurt Chapman (unverified)
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    OK, enough of which side is more correct. Here is a bold example of why more and more voters are turned off and will be absent from the very discussion.

    The voters pamphlett, allegedly put together in a non-partisan manner by the Office of Secretary of State has:

    1. For statements made by John Kroger where he identifies himself as the State Attorney General.
    2. Both M66 and M67 "Arguments in Opposition" begin and end with ersatz statements attributed to "Our Oregon" and are actually arguments in favor of M66 and M67.
    3. Interesting happenstance? More likely an engineered outcome as the statistically figured outcome of both measures beginning and ending in this manner is lower than low.

    The Voters Pamplett states that statements in support/opposition are printed in the order that they are filed with the Secretary of State's office. Hmmmmm, I sincerely doubt it.

  • John Silvertooth (unverified)
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    Why Mr. Novick-

    I would jus be shocked if corporate lobbyists influenced the editorial board of the Oregonian!

    How can this be possible?

    The editorial board of the Oregonian is corporate lobbyists...

  • LT (unverified)
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    Folks who subscribe to the print Ststesman Journal saw this on the front page today

    http://www.statesmanjournal.com/article/20100103/NEWS/1030339/Analyzing-Measure-66

    And about "the left".

    That is a construct claiming that all members of a certain group think alike and as one.

    Has been really interesting this past year---all the stuff about what "the left" believes proves I am more of an independent centrist, because of how little my thinking lines up with all the pronouncements of "what the left believes".

  • LT (unverified)
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    Kurt, about # 2---that sort of thing has been going on for awhile.

    As I recall, someone named Dennis Moore pioneered the practice on some social issue ballot measure.

    I thought it was clever for Common Cause to declare their neutrality but buy and argument which talked about campaign funding and gave their web address should anyone want to track the campaign finance side of these measures.

  • Jiang Lee (unverified)
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    I think "condescending" was largely directed at the promoters on both sides, particularly the liberals, not bloggers.

    Posted by: Carla Axtman | Jan 3, 2010 11:14:51 AM

    Or is the "condescension" argument an ad hominem stalking horse for your real position, which is that capitalist interests ought to be protected against social interests?

    Ding!

    Gad! Look who's talking ...

    At least he asked. We'll never hear those words from your mouth!

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    Kurt - I've worked on 3 ballot measure campaigns in the last 3 election cycles, and I know from experience that the SOS timestamps every document received by the office at the time it is received. They are incredibly meticulous about it, and most serve across multiple administrations and are very apolitical.

    I think it is highly unlikely that there was any manipulation in the fact that OurOregon was able to publish the first statements on both the for and against.

    Through about 2006, there was a guy by the name of Michael Moore who was something of a legend for his ability to be the first person to file voter's pamphlet arguments speaking "in favor" of ballot measures he opposed (and no, I don't mean THE Michael Moore).

  • Galen (unverified)
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    "It's partly due to the corrupt system which facilitates corporate bribery, but it's also due to the millions of selfish, anti-government minions and ideologically bankrupt institutions like the Oregonian editorial board."

    This is a bit of a paradox here. If government is run by corporate bribery (which I tend to concur but is also bribed by Pacs that have other agendas) why would it be selfish to be anti-government? Who would want to trust a bought and paid for institution that is fraudulent in most of its endeavors? Why would want to give your money to them? You are advocating in one sentence they are not representing us but corporations it seems, then in the other advocating we give these corporatist policy makers more money? This type of backwards thinking has our country in trouble. Reliance on coercion and not individual will eventually backfire. Most of these developed countries like Germany and Austria, England, Eastern Europe, Italy, Spain are mostly less than one generation or two from tyranny or are experiencing some form of it now. You want to use them as role models because some of them had a generation or so success with plunder? Most of these countries do not even have freedom of speech. Next I will have to define freedom of speech. I know. Just like I had to define freedom before. Liberty comes in baby steps.

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    I'm with those who believe that when it comes to crunch time in elections and ballot measures, the publisher takes over the editiorial board and simply reflects his business interests. The Oregonian editorials at other times are generally fairly liberal, althought incredibly wishy-washy, and usually decry the Republican position on controversial issues. The result is incredibly inconsistent; vote for the guys and ballot measures that push all the policies we oppose.

  • mp97303 (unverified)
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    I can't wait for the very people who are criticizing the Oregonian today to praise them when some particular op ed agrees with them.

  • LT (unverified)
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    MP---do you always either agree with someone 100% of the time or disagree 100% of the time?

    I was at a social event this afternoon and the topic of local candidates came up--esp. Mayor candidates. I said "Lord knows I have argued with Chuck many times, but I heard a great speech he gave which among other things said that regardless of who was elected, certain upcoming issues would have to be dealt with in the term of the next Mayor, and here was his plan...."

    It sounds to me like you are more absolutist than that and think everyone always agrees or always disagrees with someone.

    You folks who are so gung ho on these ballot measures (either side) might do well to get out among the general population.

    This open house was just among friends who are not political. The discussions I did have about the ballot measures fell into the category of people who needed to re-register because they had moved since they last voted--and I told them the deadline was Jan. 5. And the folks who said "I'm going to have to study those ballot measures, I don't know anything about them".

    Which makes me suspect the ads, the press coverage, the blogging, etc. is not penetrating the thoughts of most folks who are not political activists.

  • Gil 62 (unverified)
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    Below is an op ed I submitted to the O, which of course they didn't publish:

    I was recently laid off from my job of over 20 years as a criminal justice professional for a nonprofit due to Oregon's worsening budget problems.  I only mention that to put the following in context.    In January, Oregon voters will decide whether the state budget is bad enough already or whether to make things worse.  The legislature came up with a plan to help bridge the money gap, but opponents got enough signatures to refer the plan to the voters, hence Measures 66 and 67.  If passed, the measures would: Increase the $10 corporate minimum income tax for the first time since 1931. The new minimum will start at $150. Increase the tax rate on corporate profits in excess of $250,000 by 1.3% (above $10 million in 2013) Increase the tax rate for singles on net personal income in excess of $125,000 (for couples, in excess of $250,000) by 1.8% Right now, more than two-thirds of corporations doing business in Oregon pay just $10 a year in the corporate minimum income tax. The economic crisis is threatening Oregon’s ability to fund essential services like education, health care, and public safety, making life more difficult for all of us.   Will the proposed changes affect you?  No, not unless you make over $125,000 (or $250,000 for a couple).   Will they affect your business?   88% of businesses in Oregon will only pay $150 so that protects our small business owners.  Sole proprietors pay nothing.  And for at least three of us on my street of 18 homes who have been laid off, the first $2,400 in unemployment benefits will be exempt from state taxation in 2009.     As a former union negotiator, I routinely reviewed state budget documents and have looked at information on the impacts if these measures don't pass.  The cuts to criminal justice and the court system alone are staggering.  Here's a sampling: Close several Department of Corrections facilities with immediate release of over 3400 inmates Close courthouses at least one day per week (if courts are open 20% less, the current backlog will become huge) Decrease funding for indigent defendants (if the court can't appoint counsel, the defendant can't be prosecuted or even kept in jail) Reduce investigations by Oregon State Police of physical, sexual and other abuse of children by 50% Close over half of Oregon Youth Authority (juvenile justice) facilities and/or living units, returning juvenile offenders to foster care or their own communities

    These cuts are not scare tactics like M 66 & 67 opponents would like you to believe.  It's real this time.  There are some pretty enormous impacts to all state agencies and state services that will ultimately touch each of us in some way.    Passing these measures will not get me my job back.  But as an Oregonian, I care about our state and want to see some level of decent livability for us all.  And that's precisely what these measures can accomplish.  So please, when you get your ballot in early January, consider voting YES for both measures. 

  • LT (unverified)
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    Gil, the last paragraph makes me think I have read that somewhere before.

    Chris Dudley praises the Oregonian editorial on Facebook.

    How will that make him look if the measures pass?

    It would be nice if we would hear more from candidates taking this guest opinion seriously.

    http://www.oregonlive.com/opinion/index.ssf/2010/01/oregon_tax_reform_kicking_the.html

  • mp97303 (unverified)
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    LT

    I don't sing their praises when it suits me and disparage them when they say something that I disagree with as is the case here.

  • mp97303 (unverified)
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    Increase the tax rate on corporate profits in excess of $250,000 by 1.3% (above $10 million in 2013)

    WRONG! It is a 19.7% increase in the tax rate. 1.3/6.6=19.7%

    Increase the tax rate for singles on net personal income in excess of $125,000 (for couples, in excess of $250,000) by 1.8%

    WRONG! It is a 20% increase in the tax rate. 1.8/9=20%

    20,547 of the 20,803 C Corps that paid the $10 minimum did so because they either had no income in the current year or used a loss carried forward from another year to result in zero taxable income.

    31 of the 20,803 had oregon taxable income >$1M and used LCF's and tax credits to only pay the minimum. Way to go after the other 20,772 just because those 31 piss you off.

  • Bartender (unverified)
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    What I find most irritatingly condescending, is Galen's longwinded diatribes in which he repeatedly admonishes us to educate ourselves.

    Thanks, Pat Ryan, for the tip on the three button mouse. Is there any way to do the same on my iPhone? ;)

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    Steve,

    Your post is spot on. Why The Oregonian editorial board would think that proposals by the business community that called for across the board tax increases are any more viable in the legislature or at the ballot box escapes me. Just as the business community came up with precious little money in the TABOR fight a few years ago, there's no reason to think they would significantly bankroll a round II. And most importantly, The Oregonian ignored the reality that the business community was not united in support of an alternative, however bad it might be., and they certainly don't have control over Dick Armey's FreedomWorks, Americans for Prosperity or the Oregon GOP.

    Yes, Steve, they are just like people we know who cling to abusive relationships. Sad, but true.

  • LT (unverified)
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    I sent an email to a friend who wrote a wonderful guest opinion.

    We go back decades, and in that time we have not always agreed. Sometimes we jave argued.

    MP, what you said sounds like ordinary people don't act like that---either they are silent always, always critical, or always full of praise.

    That may not have been what you meant, but that is what it sounded like.

  • Dave McTeague (unverified)
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    Thanks Steve!!!!! and also Gil 62 for his review of upcoming cuts in services. Was truly shocked by The Oregonian's about face. Appreciated the comments about the publisher taking over the editorial board. Am considering canceling my subscription-this would be a major deal for me, as I'm a traditional pulp junkie (tho I could maybe subsist on my weekend NYT subscription). If I do this I'll need some reliable souces of online state news. (Suggestions?)

    Also, seems we're getting a lot of right wing and bad ass Repub participation in this forum. Interesting.

  • alcatross (unverified)
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    Steve Novick posted: As you may know, I have generally had a very good relationship with the Oregonian editorial board. So it saddens me to see them on the wrong side of Measures 66 and 67, the measures I am currently working for.

    So Steve, as a past and probably future candidate for major elected public office, I hope your day-to-day working determination of whether you have a 'very good relationship' with various media outlets and other people is not becoming predicated on whether they're on 'your side'... otherwise I fear for your chances of success as an elected public official. Your effectiveness as same will stem just as much if not more from your ability to get on with those who may/will not be on 'your side' as your ability to convince them of the purported 'rightness' of your position(s).

    I also again find it a laughable when you mouth platitudes like '...Oregonians care about education, health care and public safety. They care about investing in our future; they care about protecting the vulnerable.' in one posting and a couple days later here decry the fact these same 'caring' Oregonians have opposed any and all recent previous broad-based tax increase measures. It would seem there's a gap between how much 'Oregonians' care and how much 'caring' the majority (i.e., more than ~3%) of 'Oregonian taxpayers' personally feel they can afford and/or want to fund.

  • saxaboom (unverified)
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    Steve -

    You're well aware these tax measures are permanent, not temporary. That's the deciding factor for me and I suspect many others.

    I'm and R (with kid's in public schools) that would have been willing to cast a YES on these measures if they were temporary.

    I think these will be defeated and temporary tax increases will be the final result.

    Too bad all the $ spent stoking un-necessary class warfare, we could have cut to the chase much quicker and wihtout all this heartburn.

  • Cheesus Cripes (unverified)
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    So, Saxaboom, you support raising taxes during a recession? Because it seems like the whole point of the Stop Job Killing Taxes campaign is that you shouldn't raise taxes during a recession.

    But, if I'm reading your argument right, you think that it's okay to raise taxes on businesses during a recession. In fact, it sounds like a recession is the ONLY time you're willing to raise taxes.

    You join the business associations and the Oregonian editorial board in utterly confusing the heck out of me.

  • George Anonymuncule Seldes (unverified)
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    This weird faux hysteria about the "permanent" tax increases mystifies me --- they aren't being written into the constitution, so they are no more permanent than the next election or any succeeding election. Any legislature can repeal the taxes passed by any preceding legislature.

  • saxaboom (unverified)
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    Cripes -

    YES, I support some raising of taxes during these tough times. I don't totally buy the Job Killing campaign, a bit of hyperbole there. I dislike the 'soak the rich' from the other side even more, guess its the trickle down in me.

    Oregon is long overdue for a more complete tax re-organization. I'd vote for a sales tax as a start, scale down the lottery in return. The former hits all of us equally while the latter disproportionately targets the less advantaged. Our stool has too few legs.

    George, 'permanant' tax increases do send a discouraging message to business. I'm also not sure if the GOP will ever control Salem again, and I've not seen much in the way of significant tax cuts coming from D's in my 10+ years of living here. If these measures get enacted they will be permanant by virtue of the party in charge.

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    statements made by John Kroger where he identifies himself as the State Attorney General.

    Um, last I checked, John Kroger IS the state's Attorney General. Right?

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    MP97303 wrote:

    Increase the tax rate on corporate profits in excess of $250,000 by 1.3% (above $10 million in 2013) WRONG! It is a 19.7% increase in the tax rate. 1.3/6.6=19.7% Increase the tax rate for singles on net personal income in excess of $125,000 (for couples, in excess of $250,000) by 1.8% WRONG! It is a 20% increase in the tax rate. 1.8/9=20%

    Nice try, but you're wrong. Both phrases that you quote say "the tax rate" not "taxes".

    If the tax rate is 10% and then goes up to 15%, the tax rate went up 5% while taxes went up 50%.

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    I've not seen much in the way of significant tax cuts coming from D's in my 10+ years of living here.

    Huh. Sorry to break it to you, but the Ds have only controlled the legislature since January 2007.

  • Garrett in SE (unverified)
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    I'm amused Chris Kloor thinks the Oregonian is a liberal newspaper.

    It's funny that liberals are so willing to bash their holy "O" for taking a rational positional on a irrational ballot measure.

    Ummm...dude...the first Democrat they endorsed for President was John Kerry. The editorial board is not liberal. It's far from it. Take your Sarah Palin rationale somewhere else.

  • WalterF (unverified)
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    Gil 62, Politicians always put schools and public safety on the chopping block in order to hold the voters hostage. Notice there are rarely levies or ballot measures on whether or not to fund matching dollars to the feds on food stamps or a variety of other government expenses. When was the last time you voted locally to fund schools or public safety? Lots of times right? Now think of the last time you were asked to fund the administrative services division of your county? or the decision as to whether or not you should even have a fair housing department at a local level (since the feds do it anyway). I am not advocating getting rid of any of these things rather I am asking for the choice to let the voters approve funding priorities. Given the passage of measure fifty-seven (and feared passage of sixty-one) I think the "progressives" in the legislature are afraid to hear what the voters are willing to make as THEIR priorities.

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    Gil 62, Politicians always put schools and public safety on the chopping block in order to hold the voters hostage.

    Look. Education, public safety, and social services make up over 90% of the budget, with education being (by far) the biggest piece since the whole Measure 5 thing kicked virtually all school funding away from the local and up to state level.

    When cuts happen, that's where they're gonna happen.

  • mp97303 (unverified)
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    Kari wrote:

    Nice try, but you're wrong. Both phrases that you quote say "the tax rate" not "taxes".

    If the tax rate is 10% and then goes up to 15%, the tax rate went up 5% while taxes went up 50%.

    Sorry, but YOU are wrong:

    The term "percentage point" is used to get around an ambiguity in English when we are comparing two different percentages. The problem is that "percent" implicitly refers to a relative change (some fraction of an original amount, like a salary increase of 10%) rather than an absolute change (some specified amount, like a salary increase of $1000). What do we say when we want to treat a percentage as an absolute amount? If, for example, the current tax rate were 10% and we increased it to 12%, we might say that we increased it by 2 percent. But that would be taken to mean that we increased it by 2% _of the original 10%_ (that is, by 2/100 of 10%, or 0.2%), to 10.2%. The question is, are we using "percent" to mean one of the units called percent, or a percentage of that percentage? To avoid this problem, we say instead that we are increasing the tax rate by "two percentage points". This unambiguously refers to the number 2% itself as a unit, rather than to 2% of something else. On the other hand, if we actually wanted to say that the tax increased to 10.2%, it would be a good idea to clarify that as well, perhaps by saying explicitly that it increased by 2% of its old rate, or by stating the old and new values. Technically, however, it is correct to say that it increased by 2%.
    Source: Ask Dr. Math

    Had he said it was going up 1.3pp, then he (and you) would have been correct.

  • LT (unverified)
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    Walter,

    "Given the passage of measure fifty-seven (and feared passage of sixty-one) I think the "progressives" in the legislature are afraid to hear what the voters are willing to make as THEIR priorities."

    First--do you know for a fact (which others could check) how many votes were Yes on 57 because it was an excellent stand alone bill (maybe people liked the drug treatment part) and how many voted Yes on 57 to defeat the Mannix measure?

    There are those (Karen Minnis was big on this)who see "the voters" as a single celled organism, one which agrees with them.

    But "the voters" elected the legislators who voted for the taxes which became 66 & 67 (how much of the money to put those on the ballot came from registered Oregon voters, and how much of it from out of state or from companies rather than individuals?).

    And for Measures 66 & 67, "the voters" means everyone registered by the deadline tomorrow.

    Although there are people who love stereotypes ("women believe..." "the attitude of business is..." "unions always..." "those on the left (or right) always say..."

    Oregonians have been notoriously independent in their poltical opinions for decades.

    Walter, you speak of THEIR priorities.

    What exactly are those, and how do you know?

    A poll with a sample size of under 1000 tells you "what Oregonians believe"?

    Or what you hear from the people you know?

  • Randi (unverified)
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    Sorry big spending, deep pocket, thieves of prosperity, you are not agreed with by all of your peers: http://www.oregonlive.com/opinion/index.ssf/2010/01/wrong_time_wrong_tax_hikes_vot.html Billig businesses who are in the red, trying to come up for air, trying to put employees to work, and trying to create revenue for Oregon, only puts them deeper into the red. Where is the logic??? Even a 5-yr. old child can understand this simple principle of Mathematics 101. Taxing gross receipts of businesses who are in the red is insanity in it's purest form!!!

  • Morris_Todd (unverified)
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    LT,

    I agree that Oregonians are an independent breed. But somethings are givens. Oregon is pro-choice. Sure, there are arguments on the details but mostly we are pro-choice.

    I may buy your argument on M57 if the legislature was not so afraid of 61 passing that they came up with 57. Then the question is how many people did not vote for 57 because they only wanted 61? I agree it is hard to speculate, but I cannot remember the last time the electorate when faced with a decision of getting tough on repeat offenders said no. So, I think Walter is on safe ground.

  • dave dietz (unverified)
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    If Blue Oregon and Novik claim to represent "progressive Oregonians," take me back to the folks who care about our individual freedom, worth and dignity. When intelligence and earnings become the property of others to disperse as they see fit, the joke will be progressively worse as our life's pursuit of an ever improving individual and social value and life quality will be abandoned by us each and all.

  • andy (unverified)
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    I'm voting no. The pro side is run by morons who choose to use class warfare type ads. They also are intentionally misleading with their constant remarks about business only paying $10 taxes. Anyone that stupid deserves to lose. Sorry Steve, I guess that means you too.

  • Tomcat (unverified)
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    I am deeply disturbed by the attacks on the (Wh)Oregonian, which I've found to provide the best foundation for my cat litter that I've ever known.

  • (Show?)

    Steve, brilliant post, brilliant response. Good man.

  • Jake Leander (unverified)
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    Steve,

    Just because someone is nice to us is not reason to conclude that they act for the general good.

    The Oregonian has consistently editorialized as if it is the product of a large corporation that depends upon other large corporations for a considerable portion of its income.

    It's easy to be seduced by powerful people who treat us well. That's one of the reasons that our kleptocracy has no shortage of willing foot soldiers. Of course, to work in the mainstream political process, as you do, you must pretend that the major players are well-meaning and respectable. If you actually that, however, you are one self-deluded dude.

  • saxaboom (unverified)
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    Hi Kari, you're right. I meant to say Salem as a whole, both legislative and governership haven't both been GOP since I've lived here. That said, understood that tax changes originate in the House/Senate.

    On a whole state spending has increased year after year without end. I wonder if the next census will continue to support that.

  • bridget (unverified)
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    Thank you Steve. I always love to reading columns like this. Would also love to see more of you on the teevee news, local and national. You were very popular on the national news for awhile. I think they'd eagerly have you on again, and you could be the West Coast version of Alan Grayson. Your honesty and intelligence always shines through and I'm still waiting to vote for you again.

  • Fireslayer (unverified)
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    People should realize the anti-tax crowd is nothing but a right-wing Republican organizing too making a fetish of meanness and the greed is good ethic.

    Measures 66 & 67 are good for everyone and especially good for the rich who ought to voluntarily pay even more because they are ones who benefit to the greatest degree by government protections, services and infrastructure.

    We need to whip the tea baggies butts on this big time!

  • Fellow Traveler (Not) (unverified)
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    Heard Steve on OPB, then read this. What I like about Novick is he's a refreshingly honest throwback: lovin' on the New Deal & patronizingly forgiving of anyone who dares to make a buck...as long as you, er...pay the price for economic success, sir. And please look the other way while Our Fair State jacks spending 25% over last two years.

    Wake up and smell the econometric napalm, Rip Van Novick. The New Deal never fixed the Depression. In spite of (or because of?) income redistributionism gone wild, double-digit unemployment did not end until WW II. That's a decade of class warfare that didn't work.

    66 & 67 going down, delighted that the Oregonian helped drive that nail. Now, anyone up for a balanced budget initiative in 2012, time to push back on the Francophilian Surrender Monkeys in Salem, Eugene, and Multnomah County?

  • Rev Jim (unverified)
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    While I don't always agree with the Oregonians logic, at least there is agreement in the decision not to back 66&67. ANY tax in this economy will have a negative impact. Reduce or freeze taxation and promote free market growth here and you have a good start to rebooting local economies. You start raising corporate tax and we will become anathema to new businesses which are migrating from other states to save their companies. Business and private individuals/investors are fleeing California like rats from a sinking ship. Do Oregonians want to follow California?? Nope.

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