A few weeks ago I wrote about the County Sheriff's successful campaign to raise the sales tax to finance improvements in the county jail. Unfortunately, I have found out that I left the wrong impression with some people, including the Sheriff. So now I've got a little cleaning up to do.
For one thing, I left the Sheriff with the impression that I was an angry Republican. First of all, I'm not that angry, even though I did vote against the tax. Second, I am not a Republican. In fact, if I had been a Republican, that party's embrace of, and fealty to the festering sore known as Donald Trump, I would have been forced to leave it.
For another, my point wasn't to criticize the Sheriff for pushing the tax. What I was trying to do was point out the hypocrisy between what Republicans preach, and what they do.
For instance, Republicans and conservatives promote themselves as being for lower taxes, but once in power, act differently. The Sheriff's years long effort to raise the sales tax was just the latest example. Instead, I was criticizing the voters who continue to vote Republican in the misguided belief that they are against raising taxes. Government is a business, and taxes are its profits. People in office want more profits every year, just like every businessman does.
And just this week we got another example of this. Gov. Hutchinson, a Republican, announced that the most important issue on the 2020 ballot will be an attempt to make the temporary 1/2 cent raise in the sales tax for roads to become permanent. In fact, he intends to lead the drive to get the issue on the ballot. The voters approved the increase in 2012 in part, because we were promised that it would only last 10 years. Now that it is on the books, and the money is coming in, the same folks who sold it to us on the promise that it would be temporary, are working to make it permanent.
Of course, taxation isn't the only issue where Republicans and conservatives don't practice what they preach. They claim that they are for a smaller, less intrusive government, but that isn't always the case. It depends on the issue.
They believe in small government when it comes to regulating business and Wall Street, or keeping our air and water clean. At the same time, they want the government to have the final say in a woman's reproductive rights, and in deciding who can marry who.
Speaking of reproductive issues, Republicans and conservatives overwhelmingly prefer fetuses to live babies. When a woman has a fetus inside her, these folks will do anything they can to make sure that a baby is born. Once that baby is out, if the mother needs welfare to feed it, these same folks say, "You're on your own, kid".
They believe that the Second Amendment is absolute. They aren't so sure about the others. For instance, Freedom of the Press should only apply to talk radio and FOX News. Freedom of Religion only applies to Christians.
Also, when it comes to religion, these small government lovers believe that every school should have Bible reading and prayer, because it's the school's job to make sure that you get the right religion, not the parents. On the other hand, when it comes to sex education, except for telling girls to "just say no" they leave that job to the parents because they're doing such a great job of it so far.
These folks are just plain confusing to the rest of us. But then, what else would you expect from people who would not only welcome Donald Trump, but would defend his indefensible behavior, and obvious incompetence?