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SG-W:/ prop 2



I still don't have time to write down all my points on Prop. 2.  Here
are just a couple:

1. Bad laws are a poor way to fix bad government.  Yes, this is a bad
law.  More on that later.

2. Even 30 years is not that long as governments go and it doesn't have
to do with the partisan makeup so much as the zeitgeist and perhaps some
inspired leadership, etc.  Remember that at one time (alas, long before
I got here) Michigan was considered progressive, including in
environmental legislation.  Just because the next legislature may not be
friendly to a particular viewpoint doesn't mean that you should kill the
legislature.

3. This is not just about home rule on zoning.  It is an extremely broad
*amendment to the constitution* which would affect "any law which
addresses a matter which a county, city, township, village or municipal
authority could otherwise address under its governing powers...".  The
reverberations could be enormous.  Possibly any type of legislative
action could be affected.  

4. While it might be true that some local governments can be cradles of
innovation, others are and have been pits of corruption and
wrong-headedness.  There are examples right here in Washtenaw County
(some of them discussed on this very listserv) where power is closely
held by just a few people, who restrict public access to decisions and
make them on the basis of personal gain for themselves or their
associates.  State and federal oversight is important for good
government.  I grew up during the civil rights era in the South, when
many segregationists were using "states rights" arguments which sound
uncomfortably like some of those being expressed in favor of this
measure.

I would love to hear a constitutional scholar hold forth on this - I am
wondering how the part about conditions of aid from the state might
affect our Federal/state pass-throughs.


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