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Maine Legislatuer's Intentional Lack of Transparency Meets the Gruber Model


Article X.Additional Provisions.
Section 3.  Laws now in force continue until repealed.  All laws now in force in this State, and not repugnant to this Constitution, shall remain, and be in force, until altered or repealed by the Legislature, or shall expire by their own limitation. (emphasis mine)

In 2013 when the Maine legislature amended the bond ratification process. the bill that was passed and signed into law by Governor LePage  it was written in such away as to do away with  ALL compliance with the constitution at the voting booth:

Article IX.

General Provisions.

Section 14.  Authority and procedure for issuance of bonds.  ........ Whenever ratification by the electors is essential to the validity of bonds to be issued on behalf of the State, the question submitted to the electors shall be accompanied by a statement setting forth the total amount of bonds of the State outstanding and unpaid, the total amount of bonds of the State authorized and unissued, and the total amount of bonds of the State contemplated to be issued if the enactment submitted to the electors be ratified........
"this bill [the Affordable Care Act] was written in a tortured way to make sure CBO [the Congressional Budget Office] did not score the mandate as taxes. If CBO scored the mandate as taxes, the bill dies. Okay, so it’s written to do that. In terms of risk-rated subsidies, if you had a law which said that healthy people are going to pay in — you made explicit healthy people pay in and sick people get money, it would not have passed. . . . Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage. And basically, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically that was really, really critical for the thing to pass. . . . Look, I wish . . . that we could make it all transparent, but I’d rather have this law than not"..Gruber Confession Washington Post

This is exactly what is being done in Augusta and we have a press just as one sided as the press that once was hypnotized by Obama. The Seed Capital Tax Credit- when taking the whole package of incentives put into place by Augusta, into consideration, is not a tax credit at all but a direct cash payout (direct redistribution of wealth to the wealthy). What capitalists is not going to first get his Pine Tree Zone Tax incentives which include up to 100% exemption from personal and corporate income tax before applying for the "Expanded and Improved Seed Capital Tax Credit", which is a refundable tax credit- meaning that if no taxes are owed a direct redistribution of wealth from taxpayers to capitalists is due. And how was the "Expanded and Improved Seed Capital Tax Credit" expanded? One major way was by opening this credit up to out of state investors who don't owe Maine taxes in the first place- so it can't be a "tax credit" for taxes not owed - its a direct transfer of wealth.

What is the "tax credit" called in the fiscal note? It is called a "reduction in revenue" - which can only possibly true for what ever small percentage, if any, that actually are credits against taxes owed, but even then that is a questionable use of language- but clearly Maine's legislature is looking to avoid the use of the word "debt" -for good reason. Since the legislature expanded by eight-fold that amount that can be allocated to this "tax credit" (going unreported in the Maine. media as they unilaterally pressed for the passage of this bill as if Maine would surely fall into a deep recession if not passed) - it means that this year the total amount allocated to the "Expanded and Improved Seed Capital Tax Credit" exceeds the constitutional limit on debt- upon exceeding voter approval is required *- so the tax credit that isn't a tax credit is called a "reduction in revenue" so that it isn't a debt either- it just means that the legislature through its un-elected tzars instructs the taxpayers to refund investors in the means of production large portions of their investment, possibly even MORE than they originally invested- while the investor retains ownership and profits and labor is taxed. Lou Dobbs uses the phrase "taxing labor more than capital" but Maine takes it way beyond that- capital doesn't get taxed- labor gets highly taxed and also pays back the capitalist for his investment!

*   [1] Section 14 deals with debt and the ratification of bonds. It sets a $2,000,000 debt and liability limit except to suppress insurrection, to repel invasion, or for purposes of war and provides conditions for temporary loans to be repaid within 12 months. It mandates that specific fiscal information must accompany bond questions presented on to the electorate and provides further stipulations on the issuing of bonds.[2] Section 14 A-D specifies conditions for insuring loans and bonds.

If you don't think the Maine legislature is doing this intentionally, I went back and checked the new bond ratification statute to see what was in the bill that was voted upon and signed by the Governor. I wanted to see if the word "OR" which makes compliance with the Constitutional requirements optional was in that text.

The word "OR" is not in the text that was voted in by the 2013 legislature and signed by Governor LePage but a paragraph using the word "AND" for the placement of voter instructions (in the voting booth AND outside the guardrail) has been struck out and replaced with instructions which include placing the fiscal information "outside the guardrail" -ie outside the voting area- a dubious stretch to say that it qualifies as "accompanying the bond question- especially when the instructions to include the fiscal statement in the voting booth has been intentionally struck out! The intent could not be clearer- to make the statement less likely to be seen by the voter- granting the corporate state (through which 5 out of 6 bonds will be distributed) more NON-transparent to the public!

Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage ! 
Gruber Confession Washington Post

By the time the bill is officially published in the statutes, the word "AND" has been replaced with "OR" changing the meaning from a mandate to NOT comply with the Maine constitution to making compliance an option !

The question is who made that change? I have written to the Augusta Law Library and included that question in my request for information on the bond ratification laws going back to the 1950's when the requirement for a fiscal statement accompanying the bond question was added to the ballot. How can such a significant wording of a bill passed by the legislature be changed AFTER THE FACT- and still be legal?

Current statutes have many amendments and date back only to 1979- co-incidentally the year the legislature decreed that Maine's economy was not being centrally managed (as it is in Marxist systems) and deemed a new "essential government function" of centrally managing the economy, assigning authority for doing so to them selves and an extended board of un-elected tzars (my word- of course- the authors of the legislation wouldn't tell it like it is). There after in 1981 the legislature passed a statute deeming that if a corporation serves state purposes, then it is not a corporation (Rules for Non-profit Corporations) to deal which Article IV Part Third Section 14 of the Maine constitution which prohibits the legislature from chartering corporations to serve state purposes  - just as today the legislature has devised a way to deal with the constitution's requirements for bond ratification.

Maine people should care because no one else will. We should be asking what all this manipulation and intentional non-transparency is intended to conceal. 



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