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Diagnosis... The Maryland General Assembly's Tax Tourettes

Senate President Mike Miller is calling for an increase in the Maryland Gas Tax
Senate President Mike Miller is calling for an increase in the Maryland Gas Tax

As you may have noticed from the lack of post-nominal letters on the above by-line, these columns do not originate with a member of the medical profession – no MD, PhD, etc. Nope, not a doctor and don’t even play one on my radio show.
But the more opportunities the citizens of this state have to observe our state lawmakers in session the easier it is to make an educated diagnosis of all that ails that anything-but-august body.
There’s a good chance, dear readers, you are familiar with the neurological disorder known as Tourette syndrome (TS). TS is characterized by repeated, uncontrollable movements or involuntary vocal sounds.
These movements and sounds, referred to as “tics,” are the actions that are so often spoofed and stereotyped much to the chagrin of those who suffer from the disorder.
Ever see “Deuce Bigelow”?
If one were to focus only on the ‘involuntary vocal sounds’ one may walk away from any encounter with most members of the Maryland General Assembly thinking that yes, TS is at work here.
But instead of standing in the check-out line at Walmart and randomly letting loose with a “#%@*$” or a “$*@%#”, our elected oaf-ficials (particularly the Democrats) – much like the British woman whose Tourettes causes her to scream ‘biscuit’ thousands of times a day – have this seemingly instinctive reaction to almost every situation.
‘Pardon me, senator, but might you have a solution to cleaning up the bay?’
‘Delegate, I was wondering, have you an answer for the state’s budget woes?’
‘Governor, thanks to your refusal to cut spending, what then is your plan to help Maryland return to a respectable level of fiscal sanity?’
‘Hey there, elected guy, would you feel forced to filibuster if your pick for state sandwich doesn’t win?’
“Taxes! Wait, what, is it time for lunch?”
If we could figure out a way to tax the death penalty this legislature would pass a law making riding a bicycle without a helmet an executable offense.
The most recent member of the “Biscuit Brigade” isn’t exactly a newcomer to the automatic response team. Earlier in the session, Senate President Thomas V. “Mike” Miller surprised the grand total of no one when he publicly offered “Taxes!” as a solution to this state’s self-inflicted transportation funding woes.
See, according to the brilliant money-men whose financial shrewdness maneuvered us into this hole, Maryland’s Transportation Fund has no funds (nada, nilch) with which to start new projects.
And while that sounds ominous enough, the real bad news on our doorstep reports that the whole she-bang will be bankrupt in 2018.
Pity, then, that Messer’s O’Malley, Miller and House Speaker Michael Busch allowed the pillaging (and pilfering) of that fund to the tune of $700 million – and that’s just since O’Tax-n-Spend sashayed into office what seems like an eternity ago.
Ahhh, but it’s not just the Democratic majority that suffers from Tax Tourettes, Blue Party mouthpieces – like the editorial board at The Baltimore Sun-Democrat – are also afflicted by this malady.
In the February 21 edition, The Sun’s pro-O’Malley panel suggested that “Taxes!” was of course the only solution to the state’s horrible handling of transportation funds, going as far as to suggest that their readership “doesn’t know beans” about such finances.
What The Baltimore Sun-Democrat doesn’t bother to tell the bean-less fools that still read their tripe is how badly mismanaged every aspect of the State Highway Administration and the Department of Transportation has been for years.
Why, just last week Baltimore’s Fox 45 reported the State Department of Transportation shelled out $60,000 last month for roughly 250 employees to attend a training conference at the Baltimore Hilton which included meals, an open bar party, and a Pinewood Derby competition.
Did we raise the titling fee for scale model racers?
In an editorial that of course agreed with Mike Miller’s assessment that the House Republicans who oppose the gas tax are “Neanderthals”, The Sun editors praised the senate president for being the lone sole in the State House to have shown “leadership” on the issue.
You know, sometimes it’s just not worth keeping up the fight. You’re right, Sun editors; we do need to pony over more of our tax dollars so our legislatitutes can spend unabated and then ask for more cash next session.
So, since our salaries haven’t kept pace with the ravenous spending appetite in Annapolis then the taxpayer must meet the state’s demands via a cut in current expenses. Given that some of us still have Baltimore’s Paper of (Liberal) Record tossed in our driveways – to the tune of more than $40 in some cases – then the only solution would be to cancel the subscription to The Baltimore Sun and send those saved Benjamins directly to the State Highway Administration.
Just a thought…
See, separating the taxpayer from his/her dollars has nothing to do with leadership and everything to do with incompetence, ignorance and apathy – an apathetic attitude directed toward the ever-expanding behemoth known as state government.
This cluster of money-grubbing, well, money-grubbers not only spelunk around in your pants pockets unchecked, they also continue to ignore the gormandizing bureaucracies they’ve created.
Well, let’s look at snack foods – Taxes! – how about all those non-Baltimore residents who frequent city attractions – Taxes! Well, what about ammunition – Taxes! – hey, luxury items over 70 grand – More Taxes!
“Taxes!”, my fellow Marylanders – because in the eyes of the Democrats, the habitual fleecing of the public represents the most intellectual of all supervisory skills.
The real shame comes because it is also the lone management skill the Democrat majority possesses.
“Taxes!” hollers the chronically-afflicted – not because it is an uncontrollable action, but because taking our money is the only thing they know how to do.


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