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Where Are All the Patriots on Tax Day?

NOTE FROM CHRIS: Today is the soft-launch of our newest Eclectablogger Judy Matlock. As “judyms9″, Judy has been the most prolific commenter on Eclectablog for two years running according to our WordPress stats. And she’s not just prolific; her comments are insightful, often getting to the heart of the matter and bringing in angles that the author of the post did not include in their piece. Some of her comments, in fact, have been worthy of stand-alone blog posts of their own. Judy describes herself as an activist, retired teacher, social worker, and project manager

That’s why I invited her to join Team Eclectablog.…

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Why this solid anti-Proposal 1 advocate is voting YES and why you should, too

In less than 10 weeks from today the voters of Michigan will be asked to vote on the ballot question titled Proposal 1, or as it is commonly being called the “road fix bill”. Here are the main elements of Proposal 1:

  • An increase in transportation revenue of $1.3 billion, with $1.2 billion a year going to roads and about $112 million going to mass-transit.
  • Removal of the sales tax from fuel sales.
  • An increase in wholesale fuel taxes that will result in about a 3-cent-a-gallon increase from the average fuel price.
  • An increase of $45 million in vehicle registration fees and $50 million in fees for heavy trucks.
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Corporatists benefit most from fight over increasing Michigan’s sales tax for road repair

Let’s you and him fight…

Thanks to the division within the Michigan Republican Party, the state legislature which is dominated by Republicans was unable to find a way to fund our roads. Their internal disputes led them to toss the decision to voters who will decide if we should the state sales tax by one-percent to pay for road repairs, help low income and working poor people, and to ensure our schools don’t take a financial hit.

That internal rancor has now manifested itself in the formation of at least two conservative/tea party groups who will fight the tax increase and a promise by a third – the Koch brothers front group Americans for Prosperity – to join their fight.…

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The Gamrat/Courser Manifesto: Cindy Gamrat & Todd Courser announce their plans to turn Michigan into a theocracy

Incoming tea party extremists Cindy Gamrat and Todd Courser have already pledged that the first piece of legislation they introduce will be a personhood amendment that would ban abortion in Michigan. The fact that this is unconstitutional and has been tossed out in other states already does not deter the two from their crusade. And I use the word “crusade” very deliberately; Todd Courser and Cindy Gamrat are very much on a religious crusade. With the release of their “Contract for Liberty” this week (read it HERE or HERE), the two of them have made it very clear that their vision for Michigan’s government is one ruled by their own personal flavor of Christianity.…

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Gridlock in Lansing tosses road funding decision to taxpayers but Dems get a LOT of what they wanted

Michigan’s legislature is essentially a microcosm of what is happening in Washington, D.C. A small coalition of hard-right tea party types are holding the Republican party hostage, forcing them to cut deals with the Democrats in order to actually, you know, govern. Cast in the role of U.S. House Speaker John Boehner is Michigan House Speaker Jase Bolger. This gridlock gave Democrats the ability to secure some important elements in the road funding agreement.

The battle to find over a billion dollars in road funding finally came to an end at something like 5:30 a.m. this morning. The final result does a whole lot of things but entirely depends on Michigan taxpayers raising the sales tax from six percent to seven percent.…

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DERP – Tea Party: Having to pay tax on internet transactions is TYRANNY!

The Tea Party of West Michigan (motto: “Influence policy, effect [sic] elections, protect the Constitution”) is a constant source of entertainment and amazement to me. They amaze me because of their impressive ability to turn out their supporters to contact their legislators to get things done according to their distorted worldview in Lansing. They are VERY good at doing this, far better than progressives are.

They entertain me because… well, because of stuff like this:

From: Tea Party of West Michigan
Date: December 10, 2014
Subject: Vote on internet tax today.

Call your Reps.and any others you have time to call

Arguments can be made on the merits of a level playing field however what it boils down to in my book is tyranny as it’s just another confiscation of our wealth and the large companies like Amazon who lobbied for this will benefit as it will remove many small business internet companies hence thinning down their competition.

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GOP House Speaker wants to pay for road funding without raising gas prices by cutting – you guessed it – education funding

During the 2014 campaign in Michigan, we were told repeatedly that Republicans hadn’t cut education funding. Despite the fact that they had actually taken BILLIONS OF DOLLARS from our schools each year, the told us with a straight face that, despite all of the evidence to the contrary, they had increased funding for our classrooms.

Now, just a few weeks later, Republican House Speaker Jase Bolger is proposing that we pay for billions of dollars in road and bridge repairs by cutting education funding so that legislators would “not have to raise taxes”.

I’m totally serious.

The plan would remove, over six years, the 6% sales tax now charged on fuel sales, while at the same time converting the 19-cent-per-gallon fuel tax to a percentage rate that would gradually increase over the same period.…
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Big Picture: A visual examination of whose side Rick Snyder is on when it comes to taxes

Last week, Anne introduced a new feature on Eclectablog – Big Picture – a new way to look at the issues using an engaging visual approach. The first one took a look at Governor Rick Snyder’s harmful impacts on public education in Michigan. You can view that one HERE

Today is Anne’s second installment. This one looks at the dangerous tax policies of our Republican Governor. He’s raised taxes on over half of our citizens, but what do we have to show for it? The fifth highest unemployment rate and Michigan led the country in job losses in August.

Click the image below to explore whose side Rick Snyder is on when it comes to taxes.…

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Rick Snyder hasn’t taken $1 billion out of K-12 education, he’s taken BILLIONS out of K-12 education

I had a conversation with Ann Arbor-area state Representative Jeff Irwin recently and he brought up a point few people are discussing related to higher education. There’s been a lot of focus on how much money is in Gov. Snyder’s budget for education and Gov. Snyder wants everyone to believe that he has put MORE money into his education budget than his predecessor. There’s a tiny bit of room for debate if you completely ignore the impact of inflation and the fact that his increased spending has been largely to make sure teachers’ retirement pensions are stable.

But that’s not what Irwin was talking about.…

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Strange bedfellows: Republican Rick Snyder endorsed by anti-gun Michael Bloomberg AND the NRA

In what was a surprise to pretty much nobody, former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg endorsed Republican Rick Snyder this past week. He’s also spending $2 million on pro-Snyder ads. I say it’s unsurprising because (a) Bloomberg held a mega-fundraiser for Snyder back in June in the midst of the road funding battle in the Michigan legislature that ended up fully funding our road repair needs going absolutely nowhere in the vacuum of leadership provided by Gov. Snyder and (b) the Multi-Millionaire’s Club is small and they take very good care of each other.

But another odd thing happened: The National Rifle Association (NRA) also endorsed Snyder.…

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