Maine’s Unintended News…

Posted: 07/01/2009 in government control, taxation
Tags: , , , , , ,
Unintended consequences pop up with nearly every action we take, sometimes good, other times…not so good. I read in the PPH that a long running ‘stand of opinion’ is coming to a climax in Portland’s Old Port this week. The gist of the argument seems to stem from a series of disturbances and complaints from as far back as 1998 with Joseph Soley, the owner of several commercial buildings in downtown Portland. Apparently, the breaking point for 10 Exchange St. came in September of 2007 when a small fire alerted fire dept. officials of the potential hazards in the building, according to the article.

So my question, based upon the article is multi pronged.

One; if the fire hazard was so great, why did the city of Portland wait so long to evict Soley’s tenants? I mean, if there was that much danger what would have happened if a fire had in fact broken out prior to this date? Who would have been liable for the ensuing deaths and injuries? The city, for failing to enforce code regulations? They knew about the situation, and did little to alleviate it.

Two; since there appears to have been a long running dispute between Soley and the city of Portland, does this appear to be more of an arm twisting action against Soley? Is the city of Portland evicting the tenants more for the reason of retribution, or is it more for the reasons of safety, which Portland appears to have ignored by allowing the building to be occupied for so long.

Three; why is it that none of the tenants seemed to be aware of the problems the building posed? Why did some of them seem to become first aware of the situation when eviction stickers were placed on their doors?

Why is it that we always let government officials do as they please here in Maine, with absolutely no level of responsibility for the actions, and the consequences of those actions? This situation should have been settled long ago. If the tenants were unruly, as the article implies, why were they not evicted years ago? Sounds to me as though Soley needs to take care of his tenants by fixing the problems, if they actually exist, and the city needs to stop using these people as hostages in their little spat with Soley. If they can get away with emptying 10 Exchange St. in their little war with this one landlord, what can the rest of Portland’s landlord expect in the future? More heavy handed threats? Do as I say or I’ll put you out of business! So sayeth the city of Portland. Or is that just another unintended consequence?

The economy is of course, the main event in Maine, always has been, always will be. I’ve been reading some clips from most of the states press about the rising enrollment in the local colleges. I’d like to say that’s a good thing because people are interested in learning new things. Not really so good though. The reason enrollments are up is that people are trying to develop new skills to get new jobs. Not a good thing. According to some reports, many Mainer’s are going to be locked out of some programs because of the high enrollments. But we’re not alone. This clip from Oregon tells more…

And of course, gas prices are a large part of this rural economy we have in Maine. The prices will be climbing back over the two dollar mark by springtime. I’ve said it before, so it’s no surprise the mainstream media are finally reporting on the hikes…

Some of my gas stations that I use are now up to $1.749 per gallon, up from $1.699 per gallon last week, so it looks like my 5% hike prediction is on target. We’ll see how close I am this Sunday.

The libs up in Augusta like to tag along behind the Left Coast Socialists in California, especially when it comes to taxes. Cal. State legislature has hiked the gas tax by .39¢ per gallon, and are threatening another $2.10 per pack tax increase on cigarettes. Are we going to be far behind, or are we going to finally stand up and say, no new taxes! I doubt it. We read in paper after paper that almost every state is making massive budget cuts, and raising taxes. Most states require that budgets be balanced, with the exception of Vermont, go figure.

But in arriving at their balanced budgets they too often raise taxes instead of reining in expenses. The state is not a business, it is not supposed to make a profit. So why do they behave as though they should? Instead of cutting non productive areas of expenditures like welfare and social engineering, they cut in places such as infrastructure maintenance and development. The budget battle is just getting into gear this week in Augusta, but I’m sure in a few days the headlines will be plastered with all of those Oh boo hoo special interest groups crying about how the state should give them a free ride.

Pretty disgusting, in my opinion. Put ‘em to work staffing the unemployment offices that are supposedly understaffed. Have them clean streets and work on beautification projects. I say no more free rides. The taxpayers of Maine can no longer afford to keep paying an ever increasing percentage of their incomes for these special interest social programs.

That’s Dan’s Maine View for Wednesday, January 07, 2009…

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