2008 Tax Cut Rally, April 12th at State Capitol

According to the Census Bureau, Minnesota has the 7th highest per capita tax burden in the nation. Believe it or not, some people in our state don’t think the answer to being overtaxed is to increase spending, then tax some more.

Yet yesterday our elected officials voted to raise our taxes nearly $7 billion dollars in gas tax, license fees and sales taxes.

Instead of cutting spending on pork project “wants” (e.g., ski jumps, bike paths, polar bear exhibits and State Fair fish aquariums) and using that money for “needs” like roads, they raised our budget to $35 billion and climbing.

And since our state budget was already slated at a deficit (remember that surplus last year? where’d that go?), you can bet there are more taxes coming.

I know I’m in the minority here, but 7,000 people showed up at last year’s Tax Cut Rally, and this year’s is expected to top 10,000.

Here’s the event on Upcoming, otherwise, just show up:
2008 Tax Cut Rally, St. Paul on the Capitol steps, noon, Saturday April 12th

Meanwhile, next time you see a story on the local news about high gas prices, people not able to afford necessities or the shiny new ski jump you’ll never use, thank your local legislator.

2007 Tax Cut Rally picture from Kowabunga

11 Comments so far

  1. tom (unregistered) on February 26th, 2008 @ 9:04 pm

    This must be Metroblogging Minneapolis, Kansas, where the bridges over the Solomon River are still standing.

    You should come visit our Minneapolis sometime.

  2. Brendan (unregistered) on February 27th, 2008 @ 8:24 am

    You just got here and you are bitching about the taxes? Maybe you could go back to mississippi or some other low tax state and compare services…

  3. Erica M (unregistered) on February 27th, 2008 @ 9:51 am

    You just got here and you are bitching about the taxes? — Whaaaaa?

    As an aside, I didn’t know our readership skewed so far left. Those that bother to comment, anyway. Way to carry the progressive libertarian flag, Greg!

    I would hardly consider bike paths to be pork, but I’m with you on the ski jump, polar bears, and aquariums.

  4. Josh (unregistered) on February 27th, 2008 @ 12:05 pm


    I appreciate your comments- there are certain things government doesn’t need to spend on/do for its constituency.

    However, I’m surprised Gov. Pawlenty chose to veto this bill and continues his divisive rhetoric. Perhaps if it had been called the ‘user fee’ that this tax actually is he’d have been more comfortable.

    I didn’t know the facts about gas/vehicle taxation, so I looked it up: http://www.taxes.state.mn.us/other_supporting_content/history_mn_tax.shtml provides a very concise history of the state’s tax system. More specifics about our state’s fuel taxes and comparisons to other states can be found here: http://www.dot.state.mn.us/information/funding2005/historyofrevchanges.html

    Here’s the key thing to me: Inflation is the elephant in the corner of the room. Nobody wants to admit it’s there, but that won’t make it go away. That 20 cent tax in 1988 has been decreased in value by inflation over the past two decades by more than 40% (see http://www.measuringworth.com/calculators/uscompare/index.php)

    I think it would be a lot healthier for these discussions to involve an honest look at what the consequences of not funding transportation are. Not passing a gas tax in abscence of other plans to build and maintain our transportation system in MN is not leadership. Going against popular opinion to provide funding to keep this a great state to live in is.


  5. Brendan (unregistered) on February 27th, 2008 @ 2:48 pm

    I honestly did not think that this blog was so far to the right. I mean tax revolt is a pretty hard right viewpoint. And the veto override yesterday was all about transit. No one likes to pay a lot of taxes, but some amount of public expenditure is necessary, where you draw the line is telling.

  6. Greg (unregistered) on February 27th, 2008 @ 3:25 pm

    I honestly did not think that this blog was so far to the right.

    Oh my gosh. Two years in a row I post about this tax cut rally and two years in a row people label this blog "far right" because of one post.

    I’ll just repost what I replied last year: "yeah, because the metroblog doesn’t promote Anti-Bush Protests, Planned Parenthood or do profiles of DFL politicians."

    Don’t even get me started on left-leaning posts of the last year on MB (global warming, public transit love, photoshopping Michelle Bachmann killing people, etc). Chill out, people.

    If you like being overtaxed, then simply don’t attend and ignore this post.

  7. Erica M (unregistered) on February 27th, 2008 @ 4:01 pm

    Thanks to Josh for the info.

    Don’t even get me started on left-leaning posts of the last year on MB

    You get to post what you want and I get to post what I want. Glorious, ain’t it? That’s why we’re both here. Different posters = different flavors, folks!

  8. Moe (unregistered) on February 27th, 2008 @ 4:25 pm

    I wasn’t going to comment on this post, because I think debating taxation goes nowhere, but this comment changed that.

    "If you like being overtaxed, then simply don’t attend and ignore this post."

    You’re absolutely right. Don’t attend and ignore this post. Heck, I think it’s awesome they are having this rally, people deserved to be heard no matter what their belief is. But the idea that we are overtaxed, especially when compared in a world view, is just silly.

    Like the orange yard signs say, I’m "happy to pay for a better Minnesota", even if I don’t always get to decide what things make it better.

    I need a beer.

  9. Kelly (unregistered) on February 27th, 2008 @ 6:01 pm

    I happened by the tax rally last year and the saddest thing I saw was a young child sitting on the base of a statue holding an American flag. He was sitting pretty high up and if he fell, he was going to get hurt. I was concerned for him and asked him if his parents or family were nearby. Somebody needed to be watching him. No, he said. I looked around and indeed no one was keeping an eye on him. I think someone had put the child up there to be a photo opportunity and then left him there.

  10. Tim (unregistered) on February 28th, 2008 @ 7:39 am

    If you think this new tax is about improving roads and bridges, you haven’t been paying much attention to Minnesota politics for the last 30 or so years. The only result that will ultimately come from this tax increase is increased spending on mass transit and the occasional bike path or walking trail. The democrats in this state have been trying for mass transit for years now and they are taking advantage of the bridge collapse as a scare tactic to get taxes raised. But the result will not be more lanes but more trains. If I had faith that every single dollar was going to roadways and bridges I would not object, but I know the liberals in this state have an agenda and will stop at nothing to see their agenda through.

  11. Mark Gisleson (unregistered) on February 28th, 2008 @ 1:38 pm

    This post personifies the ugliness of the right I’ve come to know since moving to Minnesota in ’88. There isn’t a grain of objective truth in this post but instead a vehement disregard for the social compact necessary for taxes to fund necessary government services.

    Having grown up a Barry Goldwater Republican, I do understand conservatism. Modern day Republicanism is pretty much the opposite of what Goldwater worked for. Not maintaining necessary infrastructure is a radical, anti-government notion that owes nothing at all to conservatism. True conservatives maintain their tools, their vehicles, their roads and bridges.

    Radical, warmongering, pro-corporate Republicans, otoh, hate taxes because they hate America, and want to retire to a gated castle someday with colored servants and ivory handled pickle forks. At some point in the ’80s Republicans went from "by your own bootstraps" to cronyism, corruption and "by any means necessary" politics.

    Mass transit, btw, is for the public good, and is inherently consistent with conservative values. Let’s not forget that before Reagan, the Republicans were the party of the environment because they understood that exploiting natural resources had to serve the public, not private good.

    Barry Goldwater would have been disgusted by Tim Pawlenty’s "my way or the highway" governing, and I don’t think William F. Buckley Jr. would have been very impressed either.

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