This year's first award for public irresponsibility goes to three novice councilmen in Baltimore County, Donald Mason, Douglas Riley and William Howard. At a mass rally at Dundalk High School, they called for county homeowners to paralyze the property tax process by appealing every reassessment. "Jam the system," urged the 28-year-old Mr. Howard.
Mistrust of government is one thing. It is quite another thing for three elected officials to incite taxpayers to mindless actions that serve no one's best interest -- especially when the 24 panels that hear property tax assessment appeals are already so overwhelmed that they have stopped scheduling cases in many counties.
This kind of civic anarchy can lead only to other ideas of mischief. What is next? Boycotting federal and state tax deadlines? Making obscene telephone calls to officials? Writing graffiti on public bathroom walls in Towson?