I want to make clear upfront that I voted against term limits and salary cuts for Polk County commissioners. I’ve always considered term limits voter welfare; and you have to pay elected officials a salary that allows them to focus on running this complex county full-time if that’s what you want them do. Low salaries for local elected officials empower the retired and independently wealthy. Do they really need more power?
However, I lost that vote back in 2000. Badly. And so did the ruling class. Now Bob English and company want to sue you, the voters, at the behest of “several people” to take back their hard lost right to your money for unlimited terms of office. Hmmm. Wonder who the “several people” might be? You think it’s more likely they live on a lake or in Wabash? My old buddy Sam Killebrew has always been a driving force in the past for protecting the rights of elected officials to get paid. I don’t know if he’s involved this time. But I know where I’d lay my wager.
So let’s recap: The management/elite class, which in Polk County consists entirely of “fiscal conservative Republicans” (just ask them), wants to use your money to undo your work and your vote to cut their pay and limit how long they can collect that money. And they can’t do it democratically; so they’ll do it court.
Here’s what one-party Republican rule gets you in Republican Polk County: A giant tax increase in 1999, followed by a gargantuan tax increase in 2005. And now these fiscal conservative Republicans are laughing at that time you got mad as hell and all that and impetuously (and kind of dumbly) did term limits and salary cuts.
This is no advertisement for Democrats — even though they are far more “fiscally responsible” and businesslike around here by any objective measure. (Nobody runs better, more quietly efficient shops than Joe Tedder and Lori Edwards. Y’all might consider that at some point.) Rather, it’s an obvious warning against letting people take your vote for granted. You hate some mythical phantasm of “Democrat” so viscerally that you’re willing to just roll over and take what the ruling party dishes out. Long-term one party-rule, whether in New Jersey, California, or Polk County, most always leads to trouble and bad government.
Meantime, you get more fruits of one-party rule from Tally. Gov. Medicare Fraud thinks dirty state workers are automatically suspected of drug use. How much you wanna bet the random screening won’t reach far above that mid management level? Also, I’m sure it has nothing to do with the fact that Gov. Luthor has financial interests in a drug testing service.
And, of course, our watchdog press can write a 65-inch profile of J.D.’s legislative history in which the words Heartland, Parkway, SunRail, Hub, CSX, Phoenix, inheritance or baby never appear — all the while praising him for taking on the thankless task of controlling the state’s money. Were I not such optimistic fatalist, I would say we’re doomed, doomed.