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Fire protection fee equals shrewd politics

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The severe criticism of State Board of Equalization member, George Runner, opposing the governor’s inspiration for taxing rural property owners $150 for “fire protection” causes me great concern (“Tax man takes heat for fighting $150 fee,” Journal, Sept. 13).
In a free society, it is important that citizens, especially those in leadership roles, publicly support or oppose the ideas and acts of government as they see them.
The mere fact that your “boss” or even the governor wants a citizen to be muzzled is the more reason to keep freedom of ideas and truth out in the open.
It is a great personal risk to take a stand on issues when you face tremendous powers such as a state government that is controlled by a single political party.
Acts of retaliation for not “getting in line” are common both in direct frontal- and passive-aggressive attacks. As long as Mr. Runner is doing his job correctly and acting politically in his citizen role, I praise him for taking a stance that will certainly cause him hardship but will strengthen freedom and truth.
As for the issue that is being criticized, I must comment that I think the governor has made one of the slyest political moves I have ever seen. The governor has managed to find a way to punish, with tax, those people who do not vote for him while not offending those in the big cities that will continue to support him as long as he does not add a $150 tax for city fire protection, gutter cleaning, or any other “rationalized” tax disguised as a fee.
This is the nearest act possible that simply resembles a tax on living in a conservative area. Fire protection has nothing to do with this political act, it is merely the “spin.” Very shrewd politics.
Marty Maeding, Weimar