Question 1 would starve state government of 40 percent of its revenue – more than $12 billion – and give the biggest breaks to the richest taxpayers. It would pressure communities to make up for lost revenue, almost surely by raising property taxes. Services ranging from the MBTA, to fuel aid, to local police would be slashed just when residents need them most.
Proponents claim that state government is full of fat and incompetence. But Question 1 would require such extreme cuts that the government could fire every state employee – every prison guard and social worker – and still have to find another $7 billion.
I like that last stat — fire every state worker, and you’re still $7 billion short. Good grief.
[A]n ounce of marijuana isn’t a trivial amount – it’s enough for dozens of joints – and the civil penalty would not escalate for subsequent offenses.
Anyway, it’s not the case that jails are clogged with those whose only crime is possessing a trace of marijuana. Under current law, possession is punishable by fines of up to $500 and jail sentences of up to six months. But judges are required to place first-offenders on unsupervised probation, and records are sealed after six months. Ultimately, the offense doesn’t appear on the record.
The Globe goes on to back CORI reform, but says that Question 2 is a bad way to go about dealing with that issue.
[T]he Globe does not believe the evidence presented by Question 3 supporters rises to the level of abusive mistreatment that would justify shutting down a legal industry…. The 840 injuries to dogs since 2002 are not that numerous, compared with what track owners say are the 470,000 times dogs have run races in that period. And those injuries are treated by the veterinarians who are always present during races…. [T]he Massachusetts dog racing industry is one of the most closely regulated in the country. Thanks in part to that oversight, dog racing deserves a reprieve in Massachusetts, even as many of its patrons switch their allegiance to new gambling venues in Connecticut and Rhode Island.
Needless to say, we beg to differ with the Globe on this one. Dog racing is without question a dying industry, and it continues to predictably result in serious injuries and lousy living conditions for the dogs. Put it out of its misery. Vote YES on 3.