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Old 02-01-2008, 04:22 PM
 
4,714 posts, read 11,712,811 times
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Thank you harborlady:

You are an example of the new breed of West Virginian coming here...you have seen many things in other areas and will input your best efforts to the betterment of this state.
Many people do not ever get the opportunity to travel...a great education comes from that experience...modes of government problem solutions may differ as much as the thoughts and procedures differ in addressing them. My new daughter-in law is from Hungary, before the Berlin Wall fell. She is as patriotic as any American I've ever seen but she has a thought perspective that I would call 'very east European'...she is teaching me...the old soldier, a new dance or two about government and law...After she finishes her master's this spring she will be atttending law school...(for reasons I cannot fathom)

What everyone has in common everywhere is the same thing...to be free to choose, to have food and shelter, to have their identity, and to live in peace within their family and tribe.
It takes new thoughts towards government and solutions and you and your fellows are bringing that...thank you...


I was thinking today as I came home from Morgantown about a solution to all of the problems of West Virginia...a solution that could build all the new roads and all the infrastructure for our little towns in about 15 years...here it is...

1. Partner with the Chinese government to build a dozen huge coal gasification refineries within the state borders...this done with state government money...no outside sources. (This state has coal reserves to power the entire nation for over 100 years.)

2. When the gasoline comes out for the tube sell it for $2.25 a gallon and do that only in West Virginia. When enough money is gathered in to rebuild the state from one end to the other...only then export that gasoline out of state.

3. Do away with ALL business taxes and the 6% state sales tax. This factor will make West Virginia the new Delaware and bring every business in the world here...they and the hoards of people from everywhere will be crashing the gates and bringing billions of investment money with them.

4. Hold the Personal Property Taxes and Property Taxes in a 10 yr moratorium but reduce the state's share of those collected taxes to 0%. (they now take 45%) The state will be making their money selling gasoline and oil products.
At the end of the 15 yr time period have the state reappraised and readjust taxes at that time...
It might be a situation like Alaska where the state carried a negative income tax and paid the citizens a yearly rebate...$3,500 per child and $4,500 per adult...we could do that with the surplus monies.

5. Do away with the 'blanket' of gambling that is the 2nd source of state revenue...confine it to certain localities and do not have a 'hot spot' eyesore on every street corner.
Let the gaming industry be responsible for the broken lives their addiction causes...They will offer a 'buyout' like the tobacco industry did..We will not need their money anyway...West Virginia will be in the Oil Business.

This is a very workable model and could be financed in an incremental time period...

Will it ever happen...no...but if Mojo could own all those refineries...we might see that portion of the program...as for any of it being used for the people or the state...our tradition says no to that too...it is better for us to keep things just as they are...poor and ignorant. Can you imagine that every kid who wanted to become a Doctor, Lawyer or Indian Chief could do that in our free colleges...and the level of teachers would be on a par of excellence of their own...this could happen...but could our hacks give up some of the money and power to make it honestly happen...not in a dog's...nor in a coon's age...dk

Last edited by David Kennedy; 02-01-2008 at 04:39 PM..
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Old 02-01-2008, 04:55 PM
 
Location: West Texas
169 posts, read 545,769 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lone Star Rebel View Post
OK, I'll bite. What is the "Home Rule" thing y'all are discussing?

Thanks.
OK, forget I asked, lol.
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Old 02-01-2008, 05:41 PM
 
4,714 posts, read 11,712,811 times
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OK Reb:
'Home Rule' is the ability and authority for a city or county to levy its own taxes and set certain tax rates without the states approval. As the law is written, no entity other that the state legislature can levy taxes...

We can vote as a citizenry on bonding vehicles and do that to suppliment educational programs...and we have fees.

Home Rule is very limited in WV as we speak. but the cities are hungry for it like a shark smelling blood.

Pittsburgh got it years ago and drove it down the city dwellers throats...after building the nicest city in the east they added to the tax burden instead of giving some relief and the entire city council was thrown out in the last municipal election.

Morgantown's election tomorrow will be an attempt to establish a tax that can be adjusted by City Councils vote.
If $2.00 per week for every worker is not enough ($150,000 per month in new taxes) then it will be increased to a higher noise level...that noise being the 'Giant Sucking Sound' of those dollars being sucked out of a person wallet and placed in the potholes of the streets of Morgantown.

Our state hacks are encouraging this by telling the city that no road money will be coming for 7/8 years...and that with a surplus of almost a Billion dollars this year...it was only projected to be $850,000,000 but the coal industry did better than expected...you will not hear much about the surplus this year...

It's like Mr. N*^^* said: "If we can't find a way to spend it all...we might have to give some of it back to the people."

Last edited by David Kennedy; 02-01-2008 at 05:53 PM..
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Old 02-01-2008, 06:39 PM
 
11,961 posts, read 12,431,767 times
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TBailey- post #10-
sounds like charleston is suffering from bad administrative technique of top down hierarchy where they lord over and micro manage. This is wasteful. When (not IF) they change their mind, they'll see that enabling minutae to be managed at the lowest possible level is healthier leadership. The only justification for telling a community NO is it's against the law (state charter, constitution, etc) or it runs contrary to a broader economic package in effect (town building a road where the interstate is scheduled to be built etc).
Home rule is looking like it might have an effect of punishing people twice for being successful at commerce because gov't is too impatient to wait for the money to be legitimately earned for whatever investment it plans on making. What precisely is this 'user tax' destined to be spent on? You want to rebuild a wider road into a city, but didn't think about the parking problems that will earn you? Congestion getting that thick, it might be more appropriate to invest in public transportation that shuttles commuter car passengers from a less congested area into the city or upgrading train services. I'm definately missing info here.

Overall, it sounds like MOJO needs to have a meeting with local gov'ts and they all need to be on the same page with objectives. Otherwise, it's the citizens who will suffer from these costly power struggles.

When in doubt, read about NY politics. The way I look at it, I pay my representatives to solve problems, not create them, and certainly not to sponsor back biting campaigns to service their personal ambitions. The greater good is the first thing that gets sacraficed, and once that's gone, nobody needs a government anymore.
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Old 02-01-2008, 06:45 PM
 
Location: West Texas
169 posts, read 545,769 times
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Thanks David, I appreciate the input. I meant forget I asked because I started to pick up on it when I started reading all the posts afterwards. This is all above my head and thus the reason I stay out of politics. Don't get me wrong, I go and vote like a good citizen but most of the time, I am completely in the dark as to who is who & what is what. For the most part, the politicians are all liars, thieves and only interested in what they can get out of it and the Hell with the people. "We the People" today means no more to Uncle Sam than a number in the voting booth. They promise the moon and take away our world a little piece at a time everyday.

The changes I have seen this country make in the last 25 years or so is beyond comprehension. We are slowly losing all of our freedoms and most people are too busy looking out for their own interests to stand up and make a change. Uncle Sam has become no more than big business and we are simply the customers in a world of high finance with absolutely no regard for customer satisfaction anymore & our own government giving away billions of dollars annually to foreign nations while "We the People" are told... sorry, you don't qualify or we can't do anything for you.

Yeah, I guess I am rambling and will probably never make a real difference in this world which is why I stay out of politics and let the pros handle it. Maybe one day "We the People" will get tired of being kicked around and make a stand that Uncle Sam can't ignore any longer but... I really don't see that happening in my lifetime.

OK, I'm done ranting. Sorry.
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Old 02-01-2008, 07:44 PM
 
11,961 posts, read 12,431,767 times
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DK-post#11
I applaud you on your efforts to come up with solutions, thank you. Something else you need to solve with coal gasification prior to breaking ground:
Find New England Sites - TIDEWATER COAL GASSIFICATION PLANT (http://yosemite.epa.gov/r1/npl_pad.nsf/8b160ae5c647980585256bba0066f907/ffeaf05acace703985256b4200606c86!OpenDocument - broken link)

I say this not to poke holes in your balloon, but to prevent the day from coming when you carry your grandchild to a cemetary because the sulphur in the air choked him to death with asthma, the mercury released from captivity poisoned his food, or maybe he was stillborn because his mom injested carcinagens. Lets remember the work we do is also to preserve an inheritance for them, not just take care of this moments needs. That's how men are fooled into killing what they love.

In the spirit of seeing you make this work, look at whats happening in minnesota:
MPR: Coal gasification gets environmental review

texas:
Texas governor REALLY wants coal gassification plant - AutoblogGreen

here is a link to the big stone 2 failure to keep up with current laws in south dakota, a warning for WV coal to take heed before it wastes $ on not managing CO2 levels.
Search Results

the greenies are looking at it... for a price. Will they be honest? 'Rockerfeller family fund' is among the names listed.
Dirty Hands and Clean Coal? « Energy Smart

I'll keep learning more, this interests me.
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Old 02-01-2008, 07:52 PM
 
Location: Huntington, WV
4,151 posts, read 6,852,052 times
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Harborlady, you are right about the leaders in Charleston. The way they manage state funds is often very wasteful and not as beneficial as it could be. And unfortunately, they often tell communities/other entities no but not for reason of legality or future planning but just because. One example of this is the current pension funding for city workers. Thanks to a previous legislative session that allowed pensions to be funded under a different plan, many cities across the state are now facing very large unfunded pension liabilities. Huntington wanted to "refinance" their current pension plan to a more economical and feasible plan. One that would decrease both the amount of unfunded liability but also decrease the percentage of the budget that the city was paying into funds for the pension plan. They only needed Charleston's approval to do this and they were told no. Another example is Marshall University wanted to start a new law school. The university named for a U.S. supreme court justice was doing a feasibility study into starting the new law school and before they even finished the study, they were told that they would not receive any state funding for such a new school. Not because the funding wasn't there but because the legislature just didn't want to let them. Unfortunately this type of thing happens frequently.

With regards to the user fee, this is something that has come about since cities are only allowed to raise funds by 2 means, a B&O tax and a user fee. The B&O taxes cause a bad business environment and often cause the businesses to locate outside the city to avoid this tax. In Huntington, they use the user fee to help with extra costs for police and fire departments along with road maintenance. Huntington has a well laid out road system but the problem is that it is difficult to maintain all of it since it is so vast. Morgantown is where the congestion you speak of is. Morgantown has a very poor infrastructure when it comes to roads. In an attempt to help alleviate this problem, both Monongalia County and the city of Morgantown are each planning for $2/week user fees. So anyone who works in Morgantown may get hit twice with such a fee. Such fees have benefits but they are also seen as being very visible and regressive. If home rule is passed, the user fee and B&O taxes are to be done away with for a city sales tax and possible 1% occupation tax.

The issue with the dilapidated housing is another issue that affects many cities across the state. It would be nice if these buildings could be fixed up but they have often decayed so much that they are beyond repair. When a city wants to do something about this problem, they often have to wait up to five years before it can be torn down. They have to wait for all of the red tape to go through including trying to make sure that the house is of no historical value. I love history and old houses but if something is of historical value, that needs to be addressed before the house falls apart. I've included a few different links to give you a better idea of the home rule program and the problems that each city is trying to fix with their own proposal.

You give great insight into this topic by the way. I don't think cities should be given free reign to do whatever they want, but like the 1st article said, WV is one of only 2 states that don't have some sort of home rule to give the cities some freedom in governing themselves. This would help some with the bureaucracy that currently rules this state.

The State Journal - News for West Virginia's Leaders (http://www.statejournal.com/story.cfm?func=viewstory&storyid=33133 - broken link) (good overview)
http://www.wboy.com/sjuploads/Home%20Rule%20cities.pdf (broken link)
Home-rule plan to target housing problems - Huntington, WV -- The Herald-Dispatch
West Virginia Headline News and Talk Radio (the $150 million is estimated to raised over 30 years)
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Old 02-02-2008, 12:18 AM
 
11,961 posts, read 12,431,767 times
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Tbailey- post#17
Geez no wonder people are so frustrated. Shift the responsibility to St Elsewhere, then tell them they aren't allowed to fix it. WTF?! Yes, I definately see a smack upside the head is in order.
It's so nice that MOJO left us an email address to express our displeasure with his undermining democracy. Governor@WVGOV.org
Nothing is so threatening to authority when the troops start grumbling too loudly. I see there is a serious flaw in WV constitution impeding citizens from legitimately petitioning the law. I think that's where the energy needs to be focused.

Thanks for helping me get up to speed with these links, I've got lots of education to earn. I've been to most states at least once, and assumed there was something of a homogenized structure to all local governments throughout. Seems I've met the exception.

Have I mentioned I hate politics? That said, I never miss a vote, even for a family court judge. They do their worst damage when they think nobody cares.
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Old 02-02-2008, 01:54 AM
 
4,714 posts, read 11,712,811 times
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Harborlady and Bailey:

Your observations are astute...the 'people' are kept powerless concerning any redress... for years we have been 'force fed' the idea that the government of the Moore's, Rockefellers and Manchins will take care of us. John L. Lewis did that for the coal miners and they still lived in dilapidated shacks...

enough of this...the fact clearly is this...this is not politics!
It is the continued ABUSE of an entire people! A good people! And they have been left to 'make do' and hope that God will relieve their suffering...This is a plight forced up on them and a travesty to continue this practice of 'sophisticated slavery' in the 21st century.

As for coal gassification...China is building hundreds of these plants now. Any polutants are frozen and taken away as a solid waste...thawed and pumped underground for containment. If they can bring most of these plants online within 6 years we will see a glut of oil...(but I don't expect the price to drop.) China will not be dependant as we are for fuel to run their country...freeing up investment dollars for the building up of a country with a heritage going back thousands of years. I see them recapturing their legacy of excellence and wisdom...something that was put on hold with the 50 years of ruin by Chairman Mao.

We have a pilot plant, left over from WW-2 in Morgantown. It should be coming on line soon to provide this fuel.
Our dependance on foreign oil is driven by our national companies and its not in their interest to have affordable gasoline...
Watch for the airlines, the military community or some other more progressive state down on the ropes (like Wyoming or Montana impliment the program I suggested.

We are not innovators here in Wv....those people go elsewhere and develop their ideas and fortunes...

As for 'Home Rule' the evolving model is the 1% city income tax...
Germantown, Md has it...My son paid $2500 as his share last year...his total taxation with that little ditty is about 62% of total gross.. When New Zealand under the socalists in the late 80's hit 67% of total gross taxation..the people revolted and threw them out...Australia did the same thing, but they forgot and the cycle has begun again...labor (socialist party) has taken the present government. have a great weekend...I need a rest form this thinking...dk

Last edited by David Kennedy; 02-02-2008 at 02:08 AM..
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Old 02-03-2008, 03:38 PM
 
11,961 posts, read 12,431,767 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lone Star Rebel View Post
This is all above my head and thus the reason I stay out of politics. Don't get me wrong, I go and vote like a good citizen but most of the time, I am completely in the dark as to who is who & what is what.
That's a deliberate, concerted effort on the part of special interest groups trying to keep you off focus and sway your opinion. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shill To find the truth amidst the din of all this noise pollution is like finding a needle in a haystack. Part of this is because we're taught to think in terms of zero sum games- winners and losers-black and white- us and THEM. People tend to be insecure, and only want to hear someone validate their own views to belong, instead of considering alternate views and making choices that best suit the problem at hand. They don't want to deal with the root causes of problems when it means they have to change their own behavior. People don't want to hear that our military is modelled after communism. They've been brainwashed for almost 80 yrs to hate 'commie pinkos'. The latest hate rhetoric is geared toward liberals, bearing the brunt as the cause of the worlds ills, second only to wicked witch of the cities socialists. Funny how England is socialist, but because they're in the coilition of the willing (willing to beat up Iraq, that is), republicans will be fast friends.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lone Star Rebel View Post
For the most part, the politicians are all liars, thieves and only interested in what they can get out of it and the Hell with the people. "We the People" today means no more to Uncle Sam than a number in the voting booth. They promise the moon and take away our world a little piece at a time everyday.
Uncle Sam, wasn't he the first deadbeat dad on record? LOL

This won't win me popularity contests, but I wish you'd all just walk a mile in the shoes of a politician before you judge.
Jimmy Carter was an honest man, characterized as being a wimp, economically incompetant, and oblivious to the needs of business. History associates his name with malaise. Americans don't want an honest politician, they might have to hear some bad news. What the media says they want is an authority figure to lie to them and assuage their worries with a never never land future where nobody has to work for a living anymore.
They want their icon John Wayne, mimicked by Reagan or AHnold, the terminator. They don't want to remember how Reagan squandered billions on a science fiction military, abused the nations credit card for flashy displays of prosperity, hamstrung the unions & rendered OSHA law enforcement toothless resulting in carte blanche for the top 5% at the expense of decimating the middle class.

How many americans know that he tried to steal kids lunch money by telling USDA to biologically reclassify KETCHUP as a veggie, so a hamburger could officially be a federally balanced nutritious meal? Will they include it in your kids textbook on american history? Oh, and BTW, how'd that trickle down economics theory work out for you? Have any scraps hit the floor in WV yet?
Who saw between the lines the insult to american workers who were at that very moment being told they may have 'charity' for their labors at the sole discretion of the wealthy patrons who rule this country?
Now, let me smack my own self, because in my language I judged Reagan not by what he did right, but solely by what he did wrong. I'm right, and I'm wrong all at the same time because I put blinders on to ignore what doesn't support the view I am selling. See how misusing education taints reality?

The truth is, it's not the repubs, or dems, or liberals, or conservatives, or even corporations- its the system, our language, our selective attention thats defective.
The truth is that power in DC is in service to itself, all these groups in service to IT, and the noble principles meant to unify us have been used for toilet paper in the process.
The truth is that when a sincere candidate is elected to congress, and takes his lunch pail to DC, the other kids won't play with him if he doesn't play by the system. They shun him, they trip him up, they set him up, or otherwise obstruct his path. When he comes home with his nose bloodied, his constituents put salt on it with complaints. What a crummy saviour you are! (Ah, the lament of husbands with nagging wives and ungrateful children!)

How often does your politician get asked, how can I help YOU to help us?

He might have been a good guy, he might have been in it for all the right reasons, but the same school yard bullies of our childhood are showing up with armani suits and legalese to exploit people on a larger scale. That guy is caught between doing right by the people who need him and making a deal with the devil (so to speak) to make it happen. How many of you have been morally challenged like that at your job in your own efforts to provide for your family? What did you do about it?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Lone Star Rebel View Post
The changes I have seen this country make in the last 25 years or so is beyond comprehension. We are slowly losing all of our freedoms and most people are too busy looking out for their own interests to stand up and make a change. Uncle Sam has become no more than big business and we are simply the customers in a world of high finance with absolutely no regard for customer satisfaction anymore & our own government giving away billions of dollars annually to foreign nations while "We the People" are told... sorry, you don't qualify or we can't do anything for you.
Yeah, I guess I am rambling and will probably never make a real difference in this world which is why I stay out of politics and let the pros handle it. Maybe one day "We the People" will get tired of being kicked around and make a stand that Uncle Sam can't ignore any longer but... I really don't see that happening in my lifetime.
rebs I wish you could meet my 86yr old surviving granny. She's terrified of computers. She looks at it and sees a vortex, an abyss of fonted souls. Her thoughts of those mysterious 'viruses and worms' that might land her in the hospital, or she might even get that HIV she saw in the newspapers! ROFL (Love her to pieces, I gotta shake my head, but I also heed her concerns about the mindgames online. She's wrong and she's right all at the same time, see?)

Some of this is about us getting older, our brains saturated with too much information, and not seeing the point of learning something new when our old way works fine for us. Some of this is our own sense that the world is so big, these forces so huge and invisible, like one ant facing an 80 ft wave- what can it do? Well, what could a 42 yr old black woman named Rosa Parks do? She could say no. And that's just what she did.

What gives an ant a distinct advantage over ME is that it isn't susceptible to self pity the way I am, maybe because their lives are too short to bother? Maybe the work is more important than who gets credit for it? I don't know. I can't help but notice, when the animal kingdom is untouched by domestication of men, depression doesn't seem to exist. That might be an indication of our system, our way of going about things, is unhealthy.

As for the pro's, lets not forget that at one time the "pro's" believed that mental illness could be cured by cutting a hole in your skull to let the evil spirits out, believed 500 diseases could be cured with snake oil, and our planet was flat. Our country wouldn't have been known if not for a few brave souls willing to sail the seas to get here. They'd been taught that if they sailed into the horizon, they'd fall off the face of the earth into the oblivion of space. Galileo was threatened with death from religious figures to recant his truth. Where would we all be if he resigned himself to them? Realize that pro's became pro's when they opened their minds to ideas, and tested them out. They made themselves ignorant when they feared new ideas so much as to refuse to consider them.

Rebs, I don't know what your maker had in mind for you to fix or add to, but from another thread, I'd say you've been an example of how sweet life can be when men and women treat each other right. You may never know that one day a man saw you and your wife together, and realized a better way to relate to his own wife. Rubblewomen of germany didn't wait for a paycheck, equal rights or credit. Johnny Appleseed did his thing humbly, didn't get to taste the fruit of all his labor, but it helped feed our young nation far beyond his own progeny. He was as invaluable as Thomas Jefferson, only he didn't get the accolades.

I don't consider any word you've said a rant. You vocalize the heartbreak most americans feel right now with more brevity than I can manage. Like the rest of us, you don't how to fix it. We'll find a way, if we can stick together and keep on working at it, sharing our puzzle pieces. I don't believe anarchy or getting rid of democracy is the answer, but change must happen. Big business should not be allowed to override the government we elect, unless of course you voted to have our new national greeting sign "welcome to america, a subsidiary of walmart".

Joe Q public needs something loud, how about we try this on for size? I wish the citizens of Morgantown would march down to that pot hole ridden road and post hand made signs.
"This road is sponsored by the 65% of you who didn't care to vote".
and 3 miles later...
"Do you care yet?"
Let them mull it over on their daily commute for a year or 8.
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