Hiram Perry: Government of, by, and for the People? Not Anym

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Hiram Perry: Government of, by, and for the People? Not Anym

10/4/98Science Matters! (So Does Truth And Common Sense)
by Hiram Perry
Government of, by, and for the People? Not Anymore
We've got a government - Of the people - By the people and For the people. Right? No, not any longer. If you really believe that, you're not too well informed.Government of the people, by the people doesn't exist in most of Maine, sometimes in all of Maine. Majority votes no longer carry the weight they once did. We are coming mighty close to "a government by the EPA, the DEP, by the U.N. for the environmental establishment to govern and control the people.Outrageous? I don't think so. King, Carter and their green friends devised two referendums about a forestry control initiative, known as the "Compact". In two statewide referendums the populace said No! Then in the last Legislature, for all practical purposes, a similar compact initiative was introduced to a "green" legislature. It passed and is now law. To quite an extent the Compact, twice defeated by the Maine voters, is now law. Clever, aren't they?Quite obviously a statewide referendum vote means nothing to our liberal governor and his liberal friends in the Legislature, or to the Natural Resources Council of Maine, which influences so much "green" legislation in Augusta."Oh, come on, Hiram", a somewhat liberal friend said, as he read this early copy. "You've gone too far!" "No, I haven't." I reminded him of two referendums our school district had on a school budget. A very ambitious school board had increased the budget by too much. In both referendums, our voters said 'no', in overwhelming numbers. In a third vote, 460 people voted yes in a town meeting session for the very same budget that had been rejected by more than 1400 voters.Now the school establishment thinks they are in a sound position to go ahead with this expanded budget figure. But they ignore the fact that three and a half times (1400) as many people voted the same budget down. Is this government by the people, for the people? I think not.LURC, the Land Use Regulatory Commission, governs the unorganized territories in Maine. This is a committee, appointed by the governor, that totally controls these unorganized territories in Maine. They control the schools (no local school boards). They issue all building permits and assess property taxes. To say they are dictatorial is no exaggeration. Quite obviously they represent the governor; after all he appointed them. "No, that's not true", I've been told. "We're terribly concerned about the 7000 people up here in LURC territory".I laughed when I heard that. LURC has been in existence for 20 years, yet I can find no move by the LURC membership, or the liberals in Augusta, to allow LURC membership to be elected by the people living in the LURC areas. No, indeed, they all seem to be happy to have the board appointed by the grace of the governor. Anyone who denies that ought to think again.A government of the people, by the people, for the people? It's a laugh in Maine, that has been proven. This has to stop, don't you think?Hiram Perry writes on environmental, agricultural and other scientific topics for various Maine publications. Contact Hiram Perry by phone (234-2790) or email perry@uninets.net