Propositioned

Posted: September 18, 2008 in WTF

There’s other stuff that’s made it onto November’s ballot, than who’s going to be the next President of the United States. In Arizona, we have nine other propositions to decide upon. Since this is the first major election that I will be participating in, ever, I’m trying to do my research. I’m trying to make an informed decision. I’m trying to make sense of all the confusing language and the contradictory viewpoints and the confounding ad campaigns.

They say that the best way to learn something is to teach it to someone else. So I’m going to re-word these propositions in my own words, relay them to you (my gentle snowflakes) and perhaps try to make sense of them. (All info garnered from here, by the way.)

AZ Prop 100 – “Protect Our Homes Act”. This would prohibit the charge of real property sales or transfer taxes upon the sale of a home. Since the government already collects property tax, to also be able to collect taxes upon the sale of a home would essentially double-tax the property, which is not constitutional. The fact that we even need a proposition in order to prevent legislation like this from going through just boggles my mind. My vote = YES.

(And can I just say here that they get PRETTY DARNED TRICKY in the wording of these propositions. In this one “Yes” means DON’T allow the tax, whereas “No” would mean ALLOW the tax.)

AZ Prop 101 – “Medical Choice for Arizona or the Freedom to Choose Act”. This is to prohibit laws that restrict a person’s choice of private health care systems or private plans, restrict a person from paying for health care directly (cash instead of insurance), and to prohibit laws that apply penalties to a person choosing to decline health care coverage. Since I think it’s a person’s right to choose their own health care for themselves, my vote = YES. However, as Jen pointed out to me, if this passes it would affect the US’s ability to implement a Federal Health Care system in the future, at which point the act would be overturned anyway, so this is a stupid proposition and who the hell cares anyway.

AZ Prop 102 – “Marriage Protection Amendment”. This amendment would define marriage as “between one man and one woman”. The fact that we even have to vote for this pisses me off, and the fact that it will probably pass pisses me off even more. Intolerance. In this day and age? COME ON, PEOPLE. My vote = (HELL) NO.

AZ Prop 105 – “Majority Rules Initiative”. This would require the majority of registered voters, not just the majority of voters who have chosen to vote, to approve all ballot measures that raise state taxes or otherwise allocate government spending. This means that if more people chose to stay home than chose to go out and vote, the measure would not be passed. Now, I understand that this measure is trying to prevent big special interest spending (this site uses tobacco settlement money, tribal gaming compacts, and Smoke-Free Arizona as examples of acts which passed without the majority of registered voters casting ballots). Regardless, I think it is just wrong to count the people who don’t vote. Choosing NOT to vote is as much of an exercise of one’s constitutional rights as choosing TO vote. My vote = NO.

AZ Prop 200 – “Payday Loan Reform Act”. This act would reform the current payday loan industry. It basically lists fee and terms agreements for payday loans. The payday lending industry is apparently on its way out, and this act would help to save it. Since I’ve never had to use a payday loan and don’t intend on ever doing so if I can help it, I have the least amount of opinion on this one. I guess if other people need it, though, it should still be available to them. At least, I haven’t seen a strong enough argument against it. So my vote = YES.

AZ Prop 201 – “Homeowners Bill of Rights”. This “will establish a minimum 10-year warranty on new homes, mandatory disclosures of financial arrangements and pricing and new rights on fixing home defects and returns of deposits”. Sound good to me! There’s some flack that this proposition is only for the purpose of increasing unnecessary litigation and giving more jobs to union workers. Hmm… not enough of an argument against it, to me. My vote = YES.

AZ Prop 202 – “Arizona Stop Illegal Hiring Act”. This is a big ol’ looooong proposition that essentially slaps fines and other punishments upon businesses who knowingly hire illegal immigrants. It lays out some other stuff on who can file complaints, and how, what the penalties can be against the business, and what steps an employer has to take to ensure that the person they’re hiring is authorized under federal law to work in the United States. Now, the arguments against this proposition basically have issue that it’s not stringent enough (it would remove the E-Verify system used to verify employability, and it would disallow “Silent Witness” type anonymous reporting of businesses in violation). Since I happen to think that the current legislation is more effective (and because I think that the fiscal impact statement demonstrates that Arizona is just out to make some money off of this prop), my vote = NO.

AZ Prop 300 – “Commission on Salaries for Elective State Officers”. This would give our legislators a raise, from $24,000 a year to $30,000 a year. Eh, why not. Somebody ought to get a raise this year, since most of us aren’t. My vote = YES. Our state budget is way out of whack, though, so if this doesn’t get passed, my heart won’t be broken. And if they don’t do a good job, I’ll vote “no” next time around.

The last prop on the ballot is the “School District Consolidation Act”, which would consolidate a bunch of school districts. It hasn’t been assigned a prop number yet, people are all up in the air about the details of it, and since I don’t have any school-age children I really don’t care which way this one goes.

As far as the Presidential election goes, well, I think I’ve made myself clear on who I’m voting for. However, if you’re still undecided or are looking for more information on how each candidate stands on any particular issue, this site seems to do a pretty good job of listing the comparisons. CNN’s got a good page up, too.

Happy voting!

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Comments
  1. healthy az says:

    AZ Proposition 101 is definitely not ‘stupid’ — it will simply protect the rights of people to be in control of their own health and health care. It does not impact AHCCCS (Medicaid) or Medicare.

    Prop 101 says to government bureaucrats and the largest special interests– individual people in Arizona will have a big seat at the table during discussions about health care. And, it will prevent, in the words of Joe Biden, the special interests sitting at the table from eating us for lunch!

  2. Calvin says:

    I think we should all have the right to choose but anyone that wants to take “full control” of all things in their lives should never ever for any reason be helped by the system after that.
    Problem is the system always has and always will make the rest of us take care of the those who thought they could do it better and were wrong or are here illegally or cannot stop having babies or won’t work or don’t have coverage because they were in control of their own health care and chose a limited plan…
    Oh and sorry but when there is that much money involved you will always be at the kids table.

  3. healthy az says:

    Calvin — your cynicism is well noted, but, please remember, our system (at least in Arizona) does empower ‘the people’ to promote laws and amendments to further (so the proponents claim) ‘the people’s” interest.

    What is clear is that Prop 101 furthers the interests of ‘the people’ over special interests and lobbyists and their cronies in government— at all levels, of all parties.

    Our country made the choice long ago to provide a ‘safety net’ for those in need — we now need a restraint (just like the 1st amendment) to keep those who profit from our generosity as a society from using that compassion as a weapon against us.

    Proposition 101 (they actually have a great website at http://www.yeson101.com) provides that restraint while still allowing government to help the needy.

    I have no doubt that some in government and some big special interests will pull a “chicken little” to scare people into voting no.

  4. Taoist Biker says:

    Tolerance? In America?

    Truthfully I think we live in about as tolerant a time as there has ever been, but we still have a long way to go. The gulf between the ideal and the real is still daunting, but I have hope that we will bridge it.

    The “definition of marriage” amendments seem to be widening the gap, unfortunately. Grrr.

  5. Jen says:

    I dislike prop 200 and 201. Not because I don’t agree with them, but because I feel that this is Gov’t regulation on a free market economy, and that’s bad thing. I’m already like, what is it with the socializing of the banks this last month?
    I don’t want the gov’t regulation business to that degree. I don’t think that it’s the gov’t’s place to do it. If you don’t like the warrenty on the new home, don’t buy the home. Not happy with the payday loans? Don’t use them. All that the warrenty thing will do is RAISE COSTS on new homes. Like we can afford that right now.

    Also, Payday loans wants to be reformed, because under current laws, they all have to shut down in 2011 anyway. So says the Bobby anyway, I haven’t looked into it yet. IF we reform them, they get to stay around. And I hate them.

    To healthy az Prop 101 is just a law for the sake of law. Currently everything it wants to do is ALREADY done. IT changes nothing. The law is trying to say that we don’t want universal health care, but if that passes on a federal level, well, then that would override our law anyway. Its basically a waste of space.

  6. healthy az says:

    Jen– in 1789, that thinking would have prevented the first amendment — and do you really think that we would still have freedom of religion, speech, and a free press today without it?

    How many opportunities exist to pro-actively protect our rights?

  7. Jen says:

    healthy az
    It’s not going to protect us from anything! That’s the point! It might even hurt us!

    The Amendment will not assure one’s freedom to choose a personal physician, but will prevent the state from creating a system assuring everyone access to the care they require. This amendment will require private alternatives that may not be universal, would limit services, and exclude individuals with preconditions. This is not “choice,” it is a mandate for restrictions.

    The Proposition’s goal, to prevent abuses associated with “socialized” medicine, is irrational. The only “socialized” medical programs in the US are the Veterans Health System, the Indian Health Service, and military medical services. None abuse the private sector. Socialized systems are funded by the Government. They provide services in government facilities by professionals who work for the U.S. Public Health Service. No one is abused by “socialized medicine” in America.

  8. Laura says:

    Healthy AZ (x3) – As a supporter of the prop, is it your job to peruse the internet and defend it in forums such as this one? I’m not being facetious, I’m just curious how you happened upon this site. And I’m wondering if anyone else will happen along to defend (or support) my positions on the other props. Note to self – to increase blog traffic, talk about politics.

    Also, this country was a WHOLE different animal in 1789, but thanks for the history lesson.

    Calvin – I do think it is the responsibility of those who have to “help out” those who have not. But I do agree with you that lots and LOTS of people take advantage of and/or abuse the system. It’s not a perfect world, so there will never be a perfect solution.

    TB – You are absolutely right – the problem with ideals is that everyone has different ones. So perhaps this IS the ideal society… for somebody.

    Jen (x2) – I agree with what you’re saying about Government regulation on a free market economy – basically, where is the line? How much is too much government intervention, and how much is too little? In any aspect or with regards to any argument? I’m of the “less is more” camp – less government involvement and intervention equals more power to the individual. Too bad some individuals use their power for EVIL.

  9. Try this exercise before you favor more government control of ANYTHING. Get a piece of paper and make a list of 1 to 10. Start and the top and list the things that the government does well…maybe even better than could be done by non-government groups. You will probably be done with your list after about three or four things…if you make it that far.

    The government was never designed to be an efficient or effictive entity. It cannot do it. It is not capable. The government grows and grows and grows and once it gets its’ hands on something it will NEVER let it go. Look at the financial issues we are in now. The government established the Federal Reserve and the Securities and Exchange Commission and to keep these very things from happening and here we are. Keep the government out of our bedrooms, wallets and bodies.

  10. Laura says:

    Morethananelectrician – AMEN. And very well put.

  11. healthy az says:

    Laura- no trolling here… just keeping up on all the propositions… via Google, of course…

    I am passionate about Prop 101 — not for any perverse reason…

    I have seen firsthand my mother go through hell with various ‘standard’ and ‘usual’ and ‘tested’ treatments for post-menopausal body-mental problems— she finally got so fed up, and at the end of her rope, that she tried a combination of homeopathic care and acupuncture. It saved her life — I simply do no trust the pharma companies in league with insurers, hospitals and doctors making it near impossible for my family to get care that is safe and legal– and works.

    I will not participate anymore, if you wish— but, since I discovered you are planning on voting for Prop 101, I wanted to make my support clear to grow the network through the grassroots.

  12. Richard says:

    Prop 105 isn’t majority rule; it just gives “NO” voters extra votes. Not only do people opposed to a proposition get a vote, but they also get the votes of everyone who has moved, died, and otherwise missed voting. Let’s be fair about voting and give each person only ONE vote. As someone who grew up in Arizona, I am proud that we are a state that allows citizens to pass laws. This proposition will limit law passing to only the legislature.

  13. Laura says:

    HealthyAZ – No, you’re welcome to comment here, of course. One of the purposes of open comments is to get differing opinions and perspectives. I was just wondering.

    Richard – Exactly why I’m not voting Yes on it! Thanks for adding clarification.

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