I can not think of anyone further from my political views than the shrill ultra right-wing talk-show host Michael Alan Weiner, also known as Michael Savage. But I think this loose cannon of conservatism and I would agree on this. That many who claim to wear the crimson feathers of the far right wing are in fact imposters and hypocrites.
Take the voting on Tuesday’s Prop 200 in Scottsdale, the rambling city of affluence on the east side of Phoenix.
As arid lands go, Arizona is one of the most conservative states you can imagine. If you are not on the right, don’t vote strictly GOP and fail to turn an eager ear to the red-hued gods of propaganda, Rush and Sean, then you are little more than dog meat. A disgusting liberal at best, a socialist or Commie at the far end.
We all know how much conservatives hate taxes and big government. It is not personal, they say. It is ideological. It is the way of the universe. A world without taxes is the way God meant it to be. And yet on Tuesday voters in right-wing Scottsdale approved by a handsome margin Prop 200 and a 2% tax increase. Tempe, the big university city to Scottsdale’s south, approved a similar increase by a reported 70 percent. So what gives?
What gives is this. It is a bed-tax increase for local hotels.
It would be nice to think that the hotels, like all good citizens of Scottsdale, want to create more jobs, attract special events and add revenue for government services like police, water, fire and street improvement. It would be nice to think that the civic-minded hotels would eat the cost for the good of the community. But we all know that is not going to happen. Not on this planet. The hotels without question will pass the tax on to their lodgers, to the tourists, most of whom flock in from out of state.
In short, out here in the painted desert of red, we find taxes are OK as long as someone else pays them. It is OK for outsiders to pay for what only benefits us.
I think Michael Savage would agree, that if you are anti-tax, you are anti-tax in all cases, that the many so-called conservatives that voted for the tax increase are not conservatives at all but hypocrites and shameful panhandlers too cheap to pay their own way.
Perhaps those big hotels, the tourism industry and city fathers tyring to combat the Great Recession should work harder and become more creative. Not rip off tourists.
Being independent of government, standing on your own. Isn’t that the conservative way?