Stephens’ convenient argument favors those who prosper

“A dishonest way to raise taxes,” Sally Stephens, Oct. 23

Stephens’ convenient argument favors those who prosper

Sally Stephens’ column last week urges a no vote on Propositions K, V and W.

From her description of them, one would have expected her to explain that the needs of Muni and the homeless were less important than the cost of the tax in Prop. K, that the soda tax in Prop. V was so horrible that it would be better to have more people get diabetes, or that the needs of City College students to get a start in life were outweighed by the rights of people with $5 million homes to keep every scrap of their wealth for Prop. W.

Perhaps because those arguments sound ridiculous, Stephens instead claims to be upset that these measures are thwarting the will of the voters that all taxes need two-thirds voter approval, and that we should vote them down for that reason. Embarrassingly for that argument, the will of the voters actually allowed a simple majority to support some taxes, including all three in the propositions.

What’s so great about the two-thirds rule anyway? Stephens approves of making tax increases difficult.

While nobody likes to pay taxes, it’s difficult to see the moral argument for minority rule on tax increases.

It’s a deliberate way to tilt the scales against those in need in favor of those who prosper. Over the last decade, the state has had sharp cuts that have hurt lots of people; why don’t we require two-thirds voter approval for those changes?

Oh, right, because we don’t care about poor people.

Ross Boylan

San Francisco

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