GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

August 14, 2013

Letter: State of our state cries out for change


Gloucester Daily Times

---- — To the editor:

I am writing to address the state-of-the-state in Massachusetts.

Currently 90 percent of the state senators in Massachusetts are Democrats, and 80 percent of the state representatives, including Cape Ann, are Democrats.

For the past nine years, we have had a governor who is a Democrat. What has this completely unbalanced representation yielded the people of Massachusetts?

Let’s look at just this year alone. The governor proposes a $1.2 billion dollar tax increase. The legislature (controlled by Democrats) says no — we only need to raise taxes by $500 million.

Then we find out that state revenues, this year, are on the increase. In fact, state revenues are up about $500 million. So, the Republican minority in the senate (led by our Senator Bruce Tarr), and in the House come up with a plan to balance the state budget without raising taxes — the governor and the Democratically controlled legislature say no! Gov. Patrick vetoes the legislature’s $500 million tax increase proposal, and insists that he needs $1.2 billion.

The legislature overrides the governor’s veto, and increases cigarette taxes, gas taxes, and implements a new 6.25 percent sales tax on computer services.

Amazingly, the Democratic leadership tells us (as they did with Obamacare) that they are not sure what computer services will be subject to this new 6.25 percent tax.

Really? Then how can they calculate the amount they expect to raise? And how can businesses implement a tax that hasn’t been defined?

All of this comes while, on Cape Ann, our unemployment rate has gone up, not down, over the last year. Then add the increased costs and penalties of Obamacare, and all of this spells a “perfect storm” of job loss in the future. Yet, after all this, we find out the state of Massachusetts has $1.2 billion in “free cash” — the third highest in the nation (the Times, Monday, Aug. 5)! You couldn’t make this stuff up if you tried.

There is an old saying: “power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” I don’t know about you, but I am tired of the incompetence, the politics, the out-of-control taxation, and the mismanagement of those tax dollars. It’s easy to get discouraged or complacent, feeling like we have no power, no ability to change anything.

I admit to sharing these feelings in the past. But, we can’t sit back any longer. We must rise up. We must speak out. We need to exercise our hard-won rights and restore sanity to the government of the people, for the people.

We must write or call our state representatives, our state senator, and our governor. And finally, when you go to vote in November 2014, remember how your representative(s) voted, and whether or not they spoke up for you and your family on the things that matter.

MIKE BOUCHER

Twin Light Circle, Rockport