The Thread

January 16, 2008

YESTERDAY, WE ARGUED THAT GOV. Martin O'Malley had to do something about the state's structural budget deficit, and that cutting state spending would have made people just as angry as tax increases.

On our Web site, baltimoresun.com, Mark, of Edgewater, wrote: People are mad because Mr. O'Malley misled them on how and who the new taxes would affect. He also railroaded this legislation down our throats by not having public hearings on the issues. Taxation without representation? Remember that?

A loyal reader in Baltimore wrote: I suspect public anger is more directed at taxes than process. After all, only a tiny fraction of the public goes to Annapolis to voice their opinions on any subject (perhaps a fraction of a fraction of 1 percent?). But I'll give you this: The legislative process isn't pretty whether it's Annapolis or Washington or any other state capital. To get enough votes, you have to add all kinds of ornaments to the Christmas tree as the saying goes. Some legislators are cajoled while others have to be bullied. It has always been such. Here's a good companion piece for today's anger over taxes - the article about anger over Social Security not offering a high enough inflation adjustment. See the irony?

But voter, in Baltimore, wrote: Plenty of voters want budget cuts and plenty would take them in education. We'd all be better off getting back all of that tax money so we can spend it on private schools, which would cost next to nothing if everyone was going to them.

Rick in Abingdon had this to say: Had the Gov. cut the budget by $1.7 billion, the only folks storming the mansion would be the overpaid teachers in the teachers' union.

In another editorial, we expressed our skepticism over a claim by a Chinese official that a four-month campaign to ensure food and product safety had been a "complete success."

The science of Chinese harmony: Deny there is a problem, deny the problem is serious, blame others for forcing this problem on China, announce a "surge" like effort, sometimes called a "war," on the problem, announce the problem no longer exists, ban all comment of the problem as it no longer exists, then censor any reports the problem still exists, wrote china hand, of "Peking, China."

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