Monday, October 24, 2005

November 8 Election

I know most of you won't bother voting, this is in case you do.

The Libertarian Party of Texas has taken an official position on only three of the nine constitutional amendment propositions on the November 8 ballot.
Amendment Proposition 1: AGAINST
Amendment Proposition 2: AGAINST
Amendment Proposition 9: AGAINST

The LPTX took positions on only three propositions primarily due to time
constraints, not because of significant ideological disagreements on the
other 6. Therefore, you might find the recommendations provided by the
editor of Lone Star Liberty and the Travis County LP useful in forming
your own opinions.

The Travis County Libertarian Party recommends the following votes:

Amendment Proposition 1: AGAINST
Amendment Proposition 2: AGAINST
Amendment Proposition 3: AGAINST
Amendment Proposition 4: (no position)
Amendment Proposition 5: (no position)
Amendment Proposition 6: (no position)
Amendment Proposition 7: FOR
Amendment Proposition 8: FOR
Amendment Proposition 9: AGAINST

A discussion of the Travis County LP positions is attached below, and
also viewable at www.austinliberty.org (click on "Read More").

Proposition 1 - "The constitutional amendment creating the Texas rail
relocation and improvement fund and authorizing grants of money and
issuance of obligations for financing the relocation, rehabilitation,
and expansion of rail facilities."

AGAINST: We reiterate the analysis of Sal Costello of the Austin Toll
Party:

Proposition 1 is an open-ended corporate subsidy scheme - a blank check.
Taxpayers will pay unlimited tax dollars to move private corporation
rail lines into Gov. Perry's Trans Texas Corridor. Our state debt
commitment will be open-ended and will encourage massive debt for
generations. Such a fund is currently unconstitutional and should remain
so.

Proposition 2 - "The constitutional amendment providing that marriage in
this state consists only of the union of one man and one woman and
prohibiting this state or a political subdivision of this state from
creating or recognizing any legal status identical or similar to marriage."

AGAINST: Our position is explained by an expert on the role of
constitutions, Jon Roland:

Proposition 2 is deceptive and misguided, and does not belong in a
written constitution of government. It is deceptive in that it
encourages voters to think that it would somehow forbid the practice of
unconventional combinations of persons living together and calling their
relationships "marriage". It would not do that, nor could it.

It is misguided because objectively, it would do nothing to protect
traditional marriage. All it would do is allow voters to vent their
disapproval of deviations from it. But written constitutions are not the
place for merely aspirational commentary. Furthermore, the example of
nonconventional couples attempting to fulfill traditional family values
in their own way is more likely to strengthen traditional marriage than
weaken it.

What the proposition ostensibly seeks is beyond the competence of any
government, even the most despotic. "Marriage", so far as government is
concerned, is only the providing of a service of defining a default
contract that people can invoke by reference, without having to
negotiate thousands of pages of provisions that a complete equivalent
contract would comprise. Early in our history marriage was not a
governmental matter. Take away government involvement and little would
change other than a few tax breaks and subsidies. Humans will do what
they want with or without government.

Public officials might try to use their positions as pulpits to
influence private behavior, and voters might elect people to do that,
but government is not created to inspire people to behave more
virtuously. When government tries to do that, the result is usually
counterproductive.

Proposition 3 - "The constitutional amendment clarifying that certain
economic development programs do not constitute a debt."

AGAINST: Our position is explained by Texas Libertarian Party Executive
Director Wes Benedict:

Local governments should not be in the business of handing out tax
abatements to preferred groups or corporations. Instead, to attract jobs
and economic development, taxes should be reduced for all and businesses
should compete on a level playing field. These handouts should remain
unconstitutional.

Proposition 7 - "The constitutional amendment authorizing line-of-credit
advances under a reverse mortgage."

SUPPORT: Our position is explained by Travis County Chair Robert "Rock"
Howard:

Property owners should have complete freedom to dispose of their
property as they see fit as long as they respect the similar rights of
others. The Texas Constitution did not allow complete freedom due to
homesteading provisions. These archaic provisions have been rolled back
over the last few election cycles and this is another important step
towards the goal of economic freedom with regards to property rights.

Proposition 8 - "The constitutional amendment providing for the clearing
of land titles by relinquishing and releasing any state claim to
sovereign ownership or title to interest in certain land in Upshur
County and in Smith County."

SUPPORT: Our position is explained by Travis County Chair Robert "Rock"
Howard:

Government surveying deficiencies from 1900 were uncovered and
threatened the ownership rights of more than a thousand Texas families
and businesses who had purchased their property using state sanctioned
methods of title transfer. This amendment makes it clear that their will
be no attempt to seize the property of the Texans whose property rights
were thrown into dispute due to these government errors.

Proposition 9 - "The constitutional amendment authorizing the
legislature to provide for a six-year term for a board member of the
regional mobility authority."

AGAINST: We reiterate the analysis of Sal Costello of the Austin Toll
Party:

The Regional Mobility Authority is the author of the double taxation
toll road plan. This plan was reviewed by the Texas Comptroller who
found conflicts of interest, favoritism, and self-profiteering of board
members who gave out no bid contracts to their friends and their own
companies. These board members should be subject to the two year terms
currently imposed by the Texas Constitution.

1 Comments:

Blogger This is how I called it said...

Thank you for this information.

11:17 AM  

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