Saturday, November 04, 2006

Why Prop. 86 (and all other tax increases) are Bullshit... 

Way back in the long-ago of 1978, Californians had a little tax revolt. They passed Proposition 13, which basically guaranteed that homeowners would not be screwed over by the state whenever it needed to suck up money to fund its mistakes.

But... there's an interesting side-benefit of that Proposition, which is still the law of the land. I give you the California Constitution, Article 13A, as passsed by the voters in 1978 and, to date, unamended:
Section 3. From and after the effective date of this article, any changes in state taxes enacted for the purpose of increasing revenues collected pursuant thereto whether by increased rates or changes in methods of computation must be imposed by an Act passed by not less than two-thirds of all members elected to each of the two houses of the Legislature, except that no new ad valorem taxes on real property, or sales or transaction taxes on the sales of real property may be imposed. [emphasis added]
Or, in other words, according to the California Constitution any tax increase can only be approved by a 2/3rds vote of the legislature, and no tax increase for any purpose whatsoever may be passed by a vote of the people.

Okay, maybe somewhat undemocratic, but the simple truth of it is this: any post-1978 tax increase in California that was only passed by simple majority of the electorate is, per the State Constitution, totally invalid. Period.

Meaning a few other things. First, Proposition 86 isn't even valid, and should not be on the ballot. Second, Previous sales tax increases that only passed by popular vote are invalid. Third, there are grounds here for a major class-action lawsuit. To wit -- the State of California owes a refund of all taxes paid under fraudulent initiatives to all residents or visitors to the state for nearly the last thirty years.

That's what the law says, in black and white, unrefutable. That's the law that your legislators and secretary of state have been ignoring.

And that's the law I'm going to point out to more than a few public interest groups when I call them up on Monday morning.

The law that all the proponents of Prop. 86 can go suck on right now.

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