RE: Cole on “The more things change…”


This is a response to Aaron Cole’s editorial in your June 14 – June 20 Aurora Sentinel, “The more things change, the more things stay the same”.

I find several examples in Managing Editor Aaron Cole’s June 14 column showing an amazing lack of understanding and appreciation of how Colorado taxes our citizens and funds our governments.

First, Cole wrote, “… the city should ask the taxpayers for help.”

That opinion is correctly in consonance with our Colorado Constitution, requiring taxes to be levied only by a vote of taxpayers.

But then he writes, “And enough shirking the Legislature’s duty of increasing taxes onto individual municipalities.”

That is not at all how it works.

Neither the Legislature nor municipalities nor any entity except voters in an election can initiate, extend or increase taxes in Colorado.

The Legislature has neither such a duty nor any way of, as Cole said, “… shirking the Legislature’s duty of increasing taxes onto individual municipalities.”

Perhaps the greatest travesty Cole showed though, is when he added, “… smart taxpayer spending like money for … are getting turned down like ugly prom dates because passing a ballot measure in this state is tougher than eating your shoe.”

Perhaps I do not “get it,” but it sounds like Cole is expressing the frustration of some elitist faction assuming they know better than the voting taxpayers which taxing and spending issues are “smart taxpayer spending”, which are not and how to spend the taxpayers’ money.

I respectfully submit that the voting taxpayer is, thankfully, by the high law of our Colorado Constitution, the sole, unique, only and ultimate authority to identify and judge which “taxpayer spending” issues are “smart” enough to be imposed on them and their money spent.

I further submit that the persons earning the money and voting on how it is to be taxed and spent know better than any elected elitist members of some oligarchy what the disposition of money they earn should be.

We are blessed in Colorado to have the TABOR amendment in our Constitution protecting taxpayers from being taxed by someone other than themselves, thus continuing a government of, by and for the people that Abraham Lincoln so eloquently praised at Gettysburg.

It should be, as Cole observed, “tougher than eating your shoe” for the government to get money from taxpayers.

Lou Schroeder

Greenwood Village