The Tahoma Activist

"Changing the Media, One Story at a Time"

This website is your Pierce County source for progressive news and opinion. If you want to be a part of The Tahoma Activist, send all submissions here. We will print anything that makes sense and touches on the important issues of the day.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Join the No on Initiative 933 Campaign!

Washington voters and internet activists: you have the opportunity, nay, the responsibility, to go to this website and download these "No on 933" yard signs! Put em up in your car, on your lawn, on your dog, whatever. Hand em out at the mall, give em to friends, slip em into your neighbors' mailboxes (just kidding, that's illegal) - whatever you do, get this message out!

Initiative 933 will destroy our ability as taxpayers to protect the value of everyone's property and the safety and welfare of all our citizens. If this thing passes, none of us will be able to stop WalMart and Target from bulldozing every last bit of farmland to put up their warehouses and big box retail stores. Nothing will stop that evil mining corporation with a majority owner in Switzerland or the United Arab Emirates from opening up a gravel pit next door to your kids' daycare center. This law is a massive ripoff by major land developers that don't even live in this state. Oppose this law, and earn the respect of your friends, family, neighbors, and your childrens' childrens' children. This one is for the history books.

Don't take my word for it - just ask the citizens of Oregon State, who are presently dealing with the disastrous effects of their version of this unholy edict, Measure 37.

Let's work to make this corrupt and unjust law dead on arrival. Vote No on 933, and until that day, let's get the word out to anyone who will listen.

Categories: Politics - Local, Local Groups


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6 Comments:

At 4:18 AM, Anonymous spit in the ocean said...

I'd like some clarification , I live in a growth management unit , in city limits , I own 5 acres of land which we , ma & pa , invested our savings in . It is zoned R-2 , which is a residential district encouraging houses on 100x100 lots . Since we bought the property in 2000 , our city has enacted a tree ordinance , which bans development on 30% of the 5 acres ( all properties over 1 acre are affected ).
It was not restricted when we bought it , I am tasked with maintaining the ascetics for the community , paying taxes on the property , and I have lost my property rights and was never compensated a dime .
Don't you think it is fair to pay for something that was taken without permission . Am I being , greedy ? or evil? , for asking for some sort of compensation ? Afterall , if one is being asked to provide a service to the community , ascetics and community values , which enable greater density in adjacent smaller parcels , why am I evil ?
My point is , that not all that support I-933 want to build a Wal-Mart store , something has been taken from us and we want it back , there are a lot of small timers that are affected .
I like the concept of a GMA , I do not think the law ever covered how to compensate landholders , other than with threats , I would rather look upon it as an evolution in the law . The law was not perfect , has a perception of having failed , and needs to be tweaked a bit .

 
At 8:51 AM, Blogger Tahoma Activist said...

You ask the question: "Am I being greedy or evil for asking for some sort of compensation? After all, if one is being asked to provide a service to the community, aesthetics and community values, which enable greater density in adjacent smaller parcels, why am I evil?"

Respectfully, this is a straw man argument. What you're suggesting by that argument is that we the opponents of I-933 think that it's wrong for a private land developer to take a sizable portion of land and turn it into smaller lots for new home construction. We categorically do not believe this.

Of course we need new home construction or new businesses to be constructed. As society grows, more houses and more businesses will be required (Although a case can be made for limiting the rapid growth of consumer society to a more sustainable level). The problem comes in when we as a society determine that we want to preserve quality farmland or green space or natural animal habitat, or to forestall environmental damage on rivers and streams.

In such an instance, land owners are forced to sacrifice some initial or potential profit because society as a whole has determined that it's in the best interest of the community. We elect representatives to various governmental bodies to make informed decisions about what kind of uses folks should make of their land. We also pass initiatives, like I-395, to protect us from dangerous pollution and heavily polluting industries.

Laws passed by We the People are not generally there to make life difficult for landowners. They are there to protect our vital common interests. They make sure rivers and streams aren't overpolluted. They make sure quality farmland is preserved for future generations. They keep dangerously polluting industries from expanding in sensitive areas. They keep businesses from polluting groundwater and public lands.

These laws are necessary for the survival of our species and our civilization. If you don't like certain laws, then go ahead, become an activist and try to get them modified. But unless you don't care at all about future generations of humanity, please don't throw the baby out with the bathwater.

If you pass this initiative, you will be taking the most important tool in the arsenal of government away from We the People and putting it into the hands of wealthy developers and polluting industries.
You will be neutering your elected representatives and handing the reins of power to those who possess the most land and monetary wealth, regardless of their character or commitment to society. You will basically be saying to future generations, "It doesn't matter what kind of life we're leaving for you and your children, the guy with the most gold should make the rules." This is not the way to build a functioning civil society.

I know you want to be able to make a profit on your investments, but you need to understand that real estate is, and always has been, an uncertain business venture. Buying land that is zoned for certain purposes means that you aren't entitled to make an infinite amount of money off of it. You need to work with your neighbors and the various agencies involved to find out how you can do the most good with your property, under the law.

This initiative, Initiative 933, tells the law to go fly a kite, and allows massive multinational corporations to site toxic and soul-crushing industries right in your backyard. If you think that your property has been devalued by environmental regulations, imagine how worthless it will be if a toxic waste dump comes in right next door.

For an idea of how this kind of law works on the world stage, reference NAFTA, the North American Free Trade Agreement. Most folks don't realize that NAFTA, and most so-called "free trade" deals, have a clause exactly like Initiative 933, that says essentially that any past or future profit that a corporation could have made from their investment that is damaged or blocked due to laws passed in member countries must be compensated, or the laws must be thrown out.

Every day, unelected NAFTA court judges sit in judgement over laws passed by ordinary working-class citizens who just wanted to protect workers, farmers, and the environment, and those laws are routinely cast out the window, to the benefit wealthy landowners and multinational corporations. This is the model that supporters of this initiative want to bring to the State of Washington, and by God, I refuse to take it lying down.

In reference to your question, are you greedy or evil for asking for some sort of compensation, no. You have a right to desire some kind of return on your investment in today's modern capitalistic society. But when the law being proposed would take away the citizens' rights to defend their property values and shared common wealth, we have to take a stand, and say this is the wrong approach.

A vote against Initiative 933 is a vote for the protection of our shared common heritage, and the future of our democracy. A vote for I-933 is just the first in a long series of giveaways to the wealthy corporate elite who are already sucking us dry.

Don't be fooled by the rhetoric - Vote no on Initiative 933!

 
At 9:15 AM, Anonymous spit in the ocean said...

Well , I am just throwing it out there, thanks for not assuming too much about my desires , I have spent my entire life on enviromental/habitat issues and don't need a lesson . I think that this issue has legs because so many people like me are effected ,liberals , not just greedy developers .I purposely bought it because it did not have water or a stream on it .
There is a great site called www.mrsc..org/legal/I933.aspx that lays out the arguments in a quite rational way ( not a word about greedy or evil intent).
I think I believe most of what you say other than the part that I should keep paying taxes and maintaining ( fire supression )for the ascetics of the entire community and put the ascetic burden on my back while the small lot devolopment engulfs all of the rest of the "ascetics" , as they greedily remove wildlife habitat.
I believe this is a valid complaint , The GMA has not properly addressed it , it ain't just farmers and walmart that want some relief , and the masses are up in arms with pitchforks about it .

 
At 7:04 PM, Blogger Tahoma Activist said...

I don't know what to say, spit. I can't figure out what your argument is. I don't know what an "ascetic" is. Can you explain this to me, and what it has to do with Initiative 933?

 
At 5:32 AM, Anonymous spit in the ocean said...

You quit censoring the your website and maybe you "understanding" and "straw question " won't seem so obtuse to other readers .

 
At 6:47 AM, Blogger Tahoma Activist said...

I'm beginning to think that English isn't your second language. What the hell are you talking about?

And to clear the record: I don't censor any comments on this page. The only comments I don't allow are those that are directly threatening and/or harrassing, and comments containing profanity. I have no problem debating with conservatives, libertarians, or "liberals" like yourself. What I have a problem with is people trying to say that I'm doing something wrong by taking a position, yet they can't explain what that position is and why they're against it.

 

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