A Luminous Halo

"Life is not a series of gig lamps symmetrically arranged; life is a luminous halo, a semi-transparent envelope surrounding us from the beginning of consciousness to the end." --Virginia Woolf

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Location: Springfield, Massachusetts, United States

Smith ’69, Purdue ’75. Anarchist; agnostic. Writer. Steward of the Pascal Emory house, an 1871 Second-Empire Victorian; of Sylvie, a 1974 Mercedes-Benz 450SL; and of Taz, a purebred Cockador who sets the standard for her breed. Happy enough for the present in Massachusetts, but always looking East.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Taxation Without Representation

Last week, the state-appointed Finance Control Board which has been running Springfield voted to levy a $90 yearly trash fee beginning in October. Trash removal has heretofore been paid through property taxes. State Representative Cheryl Coakley-Rivera went on record Friday opposing the vote. She's urging property owners not to pay the fee, calling it "taxation without representation."

The fee was established by the control board without giving the public chance to comment, she said in defense of her stand. She thinks the projected revenue--$4.5 million--could be generated at least in part by requiring control board members to live (and pay property taxes) in Springfield.

I'm with her on this one. We're a country and not a colony because we wanted to manage our own affairs, for better or worse. I don't see Boston today as being much different than London 230 years ago. When I was in Worcester last month for Bloomsday, not all of the Worcester poets were quite sure where Springfield was located. They're only 40 miles east of us--but definitely a satellite of Boston. Apparently somewhere between Worcester and here, you fall off the map.

If Boston wants to send a posse out here to run things, let them settle here for a while and have some stake in what they're doing. Send their kids to Springfield schools, sleep at night with Springfield's finest to protect them, pay the $90 fee to have their trash picked up. And see how they like it.


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