In 2008, my town of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, suffered
a devastating flood when the Cedar River overflowed and filled the
streets in some places up to ten feet. Thousands of (relatively) poor
people lost their retirement investments, that is, their homes. A good
many of them did not have flood insurance.
Many of the hopelessly damaged homes were bought by the government and
have been torn down. Hundreds of others remain vacant. The downtown
(none too healthy economically to begin with) continues a slow
The local city counsel bamboozled the voters by pushing a time-limited
1¢ optional sales tax designed to help flooded citizens in
specific ways. No big surprise, the money was spent for many
Now the cock-mockers want to change this “temporary” burden into a
twenty-year-long leash around our already over-taxed necks. They want
to spend the money on “property tax relief” (yeah, right) and to fund a
flood wall to protect certain structures...on one side only of the
river. (I guess floods only travel in one direction...)
It’s no business of the government to build flood walls so other,
smaller communities down the line can be flooded with “our” water. It’s
no business of the government to buy out damaged homes. Or to pay for
temporary shelter. Or to subsidize rebuilding costs. Or to restrict
(via licenses and permits) who may or may not work to fix up damaged
homes or to dictate how and when such repairs may be made.
Keep your damned taxes to yourself, O’ Great City Leaders. We’ve had all the “help” we can stand from the likes of you.