3/23/2007

"No Grapes" of Wrath

This post is in response to some of the comments posted on the previous one. It was totally my fault that some of the comments put up there were allowed to stay. I like to provoke controversy and exchange of ideas, but things went awry and off thread for no apparent reason. I usually check the comments every three or four days but didn't do that soon enough on the last one. When I finally did it was to late as the damage has been done.From now on I will pay closer attention.

And now too our "anonymous" grapeless poster.I believe he is the same person I have previously called the "cyber sniper". I call him that because he never has a good word to say about any of the comments made on these posts and is particularly inimical in his regard for me. Which, in and of itself is fine. The thing I find most revolting about him is his cowardly way of hiding behind his anonymity and then shouting his degrading comments about others at the top of his voice! He obviously believes himself to be at the top of the food (thought process)chain when it comes to his critiques of the others who post here. Do we, the uncouth, unread masses believe this. Hell no! Here I revert to my 20 years of Navy language training. This guy is the most chicken s**t, cowardly, backstabbing, lowlife SOB I have run across in many a year! And I do believe I know who he is!

So mr. Sniper, If you can't stand some of the members of the School Committee, and other various board members, why don't you come to the meetings and try to discredit them in full public view instead of hiding behind a tree and throwing verbal slings and arrows? Come out from your closet of anonymity and cast them from in the clear where we will come to know you for the incompetent asshole that you are. Come to the next School Committee meeting and I'm sure the Superintendent would be glad to clear up, errr-- shred your idiotic ravings to the masses. Or you could just disappear from these pages and leave the rhetorical conversations to the more enlightened of us, not that I consider myself one of THOSE!

39 comments:

Sam said...

Hey Everett, there's several "cyber snipers" as I can see - a man, a woman, and a younger girl. Be nice, you know some and have to live with 'em on the same little island. My suggestion is to require real log-in names instead of being anonymous, as opposed to using comment moderation, but it's your deal. And honestly, I would miss the cyber-snipers as well as those really strange but hysterical comments about ball-sweat. Who on Earth would ever use that expression and doesn't she know they don't? LOL, try a stab at the new drunk program Carlone has in mind for this summer, or something that can really rile up the locals like heavy rock and roll noise.
sammie

Everett said...

Sorry about the above, now he has me doing it to! Raving that is.

Anonymous said...

Everett,did you drop off my propane tank?if so thank you!
R. Brown

Anonymous said...

So ev how about some clues to un mask the sniper ?

warbler said...

In some social circles, raves are in.

Anonymous said...

Hey Everette,

I am supprised you are not ranting about the Island Wide Fees (taxes) that the town had to pass in order to cover their inflated budget.

We have to pay for parking because the beach pavilion is falling apart? Well, lets look to the problem: The town should have never have taken it over from the State!!! There should be a little accountability for a stupid decision like this which ends up costing us more in the future.

Anonymous said...

Everett

You are letting the sniper win, by you censoring the comments, he is effectively killing your blog. It's just like fighting terrorists, if you let them alter your way of life or give up freedoms they have succeded. Don't let the bastards get you down

Everett said...

Well it appears that there are gremlins in the blog part of my computer. I wondered if I was way out in left field with the last post as there were NO comment coming in. Turns out there were little internal button pushers at work in this thing. While snooping around to see if I could change the look of this blog, I came across a screen that said there were 12 comments! So I screwed around some more and managed to get7 of them to show up! If I suddenly disappear off the scope, I have probably pushed the wrong buttons again! Oh well, here goes!

Everett said...

HAH! Found this little button at the bottom of the screen that says,"save"! I guess that means I have to push it in order for changes to take effect. Another 40/50 years and I might begin to figure out all this stuff! I found those other 5 missing comment also. They were for the previous post. DUH?

Sam said...

It's a clinical term called Brain-Fart-Atosis. *LOL*

Hey Ev it's your blog so you do what you want. As an off-Islander I would be quite concerned about parking fees and all kinds of revenue taxes on the Islands biggest attraction - tourism.

But, if y'all really want to run off the business to other islands such as the one I live on, raise all the ferry rates, tax their cars but don't let them park, raise the hotel tax, double the prices for booze, and put a National Guardsman on every street corner. Maybe put a cute little blue corn flower in each rifle muzzle so they don't look quite as threatening. /sammie

Everett said...

Re-valuation notices have just arrived for most folks on BI and we have found increases of up to a third in some cases! If that by itself doesn't generate some large jump in revenue, then there is something wrong somewhere.All this parking fee is going to do is generate a lot of ill feelings and a relatively small amount of money.

I was just speaking to a guy who opened a new business on Nantucket the other day and he mentioned that the local government over there was falling all over themselves offering help and encouragement! They were SO HAPPY that this previously failing business was being taken over by someone who knew how to make it fly and that it would generate income for the town, AND GIVE THE TOURISTS MORE OPTIONS FOR THINGS TO DO!! We are slowly going to put ourselves right out of business here on BI. So here I go on record as being against the sticker tax.

Everett said...

I'm going to add this here instead of a new post. Read this and WEEP!

Tax his land,
Tax his bed,
Tax the table
At which he's fed.

Tax his tractor,
Tax his mule,
Teach him taxes
Are the rule.

Tax his cow,
Tax his goat,
Tax his pants,
Tax his coat.

Tax his ties,
Tax his shirt,
Tax his work,
Tax his dirt.

Tax his tobacco,
Tax his drink,
Tax him if he
Tries to think.

Tax his cigars,
Tax his beers,
If he cries, then
Tax his tears.

Tax his car,
Tax his gas,
Find other ways
To tax his ass

Tax all he has
Then let him know
That you won't be done
Till he has no dough.

When he screams and hollers,
Then tax him some more,
Tax him till
He's good and sore.

Then tax his coffin,
Tax his grave,
Tax the sod in
Which he's laid.

Put these words upon his tomb,
"Taxes drove me to my doom..."

When he's gone,
Do not relax,
Its time to apply
The inheritance tax.
Accounts Receivable Tax
Building Permit Tax
CDL license Tax
Cigarette Tax
Corporate Income Tax
Dog License Tax
Federal Income Tax
Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA)
Fishing License Tax
Food License Tax,
Fuel permit tax
Gasoline Tax (42 cents per gallon)
Hunting License Tax
Inheritance Tax
Interest expense
Inventory tax
IRS Interest Charges IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax)
Liquor Tax
Luxury Taxes
Marriage License Tax
Medicare Tax
Property Tax
Real Estate Tax
Service charge taxes
Social Security Tax
Road usage taxes
Sales Tax Recreational Vehicle Tax
School Tax
State Income Tax
State Unemployment Tax (SUTA)
Telephone federal excise tax
Telephone federal universal service fee tax
Telephone federal, state and local surcharge taxes
Telephone minimum usage surcharge tax
Telephone recurring and non-recurring charges tax
Telephone state and local tax
Telephone usage charge tax
Utility Taxes
Vehicle License Registration Tax
Vehicle Sales Tax
Watercraft registration Tax
Well Permit Tax
Workers Compensation Tax

COMMENTS: Not one of these taxes existed 100 years ago, and our nation was the most prosperous in the world.

We had absolutely no national debt, had the largest middle class in the world, and Mom stayed home to raise the kids.

What happened?

I'll tell you what happened. We started taking care of everyone else, and forgot our own.
And I still have to "press 1" for English

I hope this goes around world 10 times.

Anonymous said...

xzEverett

It's quite evident you don't know a thing about what the revaluation means and how property taxes are levied. The parking fee would require state enabling legeslation. Which I am against. I wouldu also say I'm opposed to bike paths on Corn Neck Rd. It would ruin the look of the road and it's charm as country lane. I enjoy the summer and it's only real busy for 8 to 10 weeks a year. We have this great place to enjoy in peace for 40 weeks a year. We need the tourism for all phases of our economy.

Anonymous said...

Everett

It's quite evident you don't know a thing about what the revaluation means and how property taxes are levied. The parking fee would require state enabling legeslation. Which I am against. I wouldu also say I'm opposed to bike paths on Corn Neck Rd. It would ruin the look of the road and it's charm as country lane. I enjoy the summer and it's only real busy for 8 to 10 weeks a year. We have this great place to enjoy in peace for 40 weeks a year. We need the tourism for all phases of our economy.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone remember three years ago when he library came in under budget? I was at the financial town meeting and the council scolded the library for not using all its allotted money and threatened to reduce funding next year if the library dared come in under budget again.

This is crazy, the town actually was upset a department came in under budget? The town should think about tightening its belt, encouraging productivity, and it sure as hell should reward departments for being in the black.

I'm glad about the new 5.5% cap, and I sure hope the parking fee plan fails to pass. The only way the town will begin to act responsibly, is if their funding is capped.

Anonymous said...

The skyrocketing home prices should turn all Islanders into Single Issue Republican Voters...to rid ourselves of the inherritence tax.

What Islanders, and not the Newyorkers who live here all year round and call themselves Islanders because they fit in by driving a shitty truck and wear a Carhart jacket, will be able to afford to pay over a Million dollars cash in inherritence taxes to keep a family house that is valued at 2-3 million dollars?

After this generation, the culture of the Islanders who have lived here for hundreds of years will be lost. We will be forced to sell our houses to the Friends of all the New Yorkers who live here now, in order to Pay Uncle Sam 55% of our parent's estate, excluding the first million. Houses that have been passed down through generations will be sold to outsiders.

The Paper beleives that the biggest threat to the ISland is drinking and partying, well guess what, there has always been drinking and partying on Block Isanders. It is these offIslanders who want to change the culture of Block Island, and they will succeed when our houses are sold to their friends because we cannot pay the inherritence taxes.

Anonymous said...

Hey 4:37 PM Anonymus: Don't worry about town departments not spending all their budgeted tax money; now all they want is more! Increases of 5, 6, 8% and thats after "cuts". What about the buildings that the town has been given by the Feds or the state that are in dis-repair? Now the islanders and "faux" islanders alike will have to somehow pay to bring and keep em up. By the way, if it wasn't for the expensive houses built by local craftsmen the property taxes would be a heck of a lot higher for us little guys and gals. And what about all that land taken off the tax rolls...makes the island more attractive for the expensive house buyer, no? Point is, there are a lot of different angles to this tax issue. The more you open your eyes the more you see.

evil newyorker said...

Anonymous 6:20.
The financial difficulties posed by the inheritance tax are not limited to those who are deemed real islanders-the average family in the Northeast section of the US faces the same set of troubles because housing prices across this area have experienced astronomical increases that make it difficult for the average person to inherit or buy a home.

The inheritance issue is not without some reasonable and affordable solution.... that's why estate planners can keep so busy today. So, instead of saddling all your woes on evil New Yorkers and their friends, consider doing something to ensure that you can manage to inherit your family land.

At some point in the history of the Island, natives chose to sell chunks of their family farms to developers. It's not like "New Yorkers" came over here with some army and colonized the place. Real Estate prices both on and off-island are quite astronomical-- at least the island has developed a number of projects to make affordable housing availabe to those who can't afford a million dollar house. The same cannot be said of the majority of coastal communities in RI.
So, instead of lamenting what you see to be a problem unique to Block Island, check out some of the solutions that ordinary Ameicans are pursuing in order to pass on property to the next generation.

Deirdre said...

"Mom stayed home to raise the kids?" Is this supposed to be a good thing?
No offense to my own progeny, but if I was a stay at home Mom, I would have long ago opened up a vein.
I have to think of Mom *not* staying home to raise the kids as a marked improvement.

Anonymous said...

Evil NY you are 100% correct this is same problem that family farms across america have been facing for decades. For some it's easier to blame others than to be proactive. Many here are just plain jealous that some people are successful and can afford asummer home on BI. Perhaps they should have gotten an education and gotten off BI and broadened their horizons.

Everett said...

to anonymous 8 am April 1, Nope, I cna't say that I'm all that informed about how taxies are levied, but when the reval people come around and tell me the valuation on my house just jumped by a third, can you say to me that the next tax bill won't reflect that jump in valuation? I don't think so! It won't be by a third of the previous one, but mine added to all those other thousand or so houses on BI should bring in a good chunk of nickles and dimes I think
!!

Anonymous said...

Everett

In case you havn't heard the state has put cap on the % a town can raise it's property taxes. so while your valuation went up by 33% your tax bill will increase by the % dictated by the state. This is what has created the current budget crunch. The state mandates certain things at the school, union contracts call for other increases i.e. benefits packages, these increase are not optional so we need to trim other areas. Maybe you should do some research. We had a budget when you were on the town council, did'nt we?

anony-moose said...

Dear Anonymous 12:somethingorother on a Monday evening:

There's no shame whatsoever in wanting to stay in your hometown. Or wishing to continue the family business. Or taking pride in a continued heritage of generations who have done just that. In fact, some people in small towns who like living the way their parents, grandparents and great-grandparents have don't need to waste other's hard earned money 'finding' themselves when they already know exactly who they want to be. And, yeah, there probably IS a little jealousy over someone who has a full time home AND a summer home while I'm struggling to keep my family property intact and pay the taxes and they keep telling me I should get an education and broaden my horizons. Hell, listening to them has been an education in and of itself.

Anonymous said...

Our taxes are amazingly low considering the valuations, I pay $2500 for a property valued at $1,000,000, before the revaluation. Try that anywhere else. Granted we get very little in the way of services.

Anonymous said...

What kind of services would you want, and be willing to pay for, that you do not get now?

Our taxes are low, but the valuations on our property are way out of control.

If the state were to initiate the state-wide educational finding tax that is being tossed around, THEN we would have something to cry about. Then, the average year-round BI family would be "screwed".

As it is now we don't really pay much in taxes.

As for the budget, and the budget cap. The reason we are having trouble staying under the cap is because we have enabled our departments to build so much "fat" into their budgets.

There are a lot of ineffective practices being used in everyday town business. Why doesn't the town have a web site (check out Newports) that allows a person to print out every form; building permit applications, zoning applications, hunting and fishing licence applications, parking permit applications (ha ha), recreation forms, clamming regulations, etc. Why do we have to go to Town Hall and ask a clerk for that? If the town had a web site we could probably operate with fewer clerks.

And there has to be a way to operate the library with fewer people or at least for longer hours, right?

taxpayer said...

I believe the budget increase cap for this year is 5%. Theoretically, that would mean our tax bills would increase 5%. I think next year the cap is 4% and the following year is 3%, and then it remains 3% until the legislation changes. The reval as I understand it, is a means of determining our mill rate, or the dollar amount per thousand in value.
It's funny that people are so upset that their properties are worth a million or more. If they were to sell their property, they would likely complain if their agent suggested they market their house at the reval rate. Most would want more.

I believe I read it in a letter to the editor, that the revals were higher because we hadn't done enough to protect the Island from the "McMansions." I believe quite the opposite is true. When buyers are competing with the deep pockets of the Nature Conservancy, the prices go up. Whenever a piece of land is preserved it takes from the supply. Thus raising everyones property value. It also removes land from the market forever, thus making availabe property more difficult to buy.
And really, it's the McMansion owners who pay a higher chunk of the tax bill, with the least impact on the services we do offer. They aren't sending their kids to school here. We all pay based on our property value.
Don't get me wrong, I think it's great that so much has been preserved, but there is a price to pay folks, and it will be arriving in your mailbox.
Pay it, and take a look around you. It's totally worth it.

PS For those of you that have inherited family land that is worth millions, yet you lead simple lives on modest incomes. I understand your frustration. But honestly, I would love to have your problem. I would love to know that through my struggles to pay my tax bill, I was preserving my family's heritage, and was able to provide my children and grandchildren their share in that... it would be worth it.

Anonymous said...

What is a McMansion ?

Anonymous said...

Better yet, what is a Mochachino?

Anonymous said...

When people talk about "the town" they need to remember that "the town" is a constanly changing group of elected officials and paid administrators. The public is the only constant in the equation.

"We" are really "the town" when you get down to it.

If you didn't speak up against the town taking over the beach house at town council meetings at the time, then don't squak now.

If you havn't raised the maintenance issue at every budget meeting or financial town meeting since then, then you haven't earned the right to start yelling about it now.

So do something constructive. Speak your mind in public and at public meetings in a sensible way and you will make a difference.

The next budget meeting is on Monday night.

Sam said...

Good points. I wrote some stuff before but got dumped somehow ... my question is if somebody could explain four things all combined as to the effect:

- Mill rate
- Appraisal value (reval)
- Taxable value
- Why you pay something different!

Anonymous said...

The town Govt does not want to change. It is a bunch of islanders who give eachother jobs and the costs are passed on to all the landowners (75% are off islanders). It makes sense, if you're in, you get a cushy job where maybe you file a coupple papers per day and all the Govt' benefits.

Just drive by the town hall on any given day and see how many cars are there. 90% of them are in there working.

Anonymous said...

Dear Anonymous 10:09,

This isn't the Albion! Quit your whining or do something about it.

Go to a budget meeting or a town council meeting and make your opinion known.

Write the town council and ask to be put on a board or committee.

Get yourself on the Charter Review committee.

Or, you could just run on down the the bar at 3:30 today, so no one will take your seat, and whine on the way you are here about the evils of the "islanders" and the "town govt" and how they take advantage of the "landowners".

By the way, are there any surfs or slaves in your story?

Anonymous said...

Only a fool attacks someone instead of attacking their argument. That fool would be you anon 7:55am. One needs not to be silent if they do not follow your proposed course of action. One problem with the town government is that they have no honor and people who speak up will have repercussions, like Tilson showing up on their door step to do a supriese building inspection.

I bet you are one of the beneficiaries of the town Welfare system???

Sam said...

Yeah, well only a fool would say "One problem with the town government is that they have no honor ..."

Who do you mean, the wardens, elected officials, executive staff, or the line workers? Certainly you couldn't mean all of them 100% of the time, well, unless you were just making a joke or playing the fool.

And how would you even know? Employment data such as regarding performance evaluations cannot be released to the public - only whether they work there or do not.

And honor, what is that? Sure we think we know what that means but you mean fiscal accountability and many other issues that have AVSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with honor.

Don't give me any crap that I'm one of those intervening off-Islanders. I am surprised that you're using this blog to accuse people behind their backs without bringing the subject to the light of day, making unfounded and spurious personal attacks, and carrying on like a teenager having a tantrum. Have a recall, go to the meetings, demand a reorganization, or sue in a court of law, just poop or get off the pot.

Hey Everett, look what you started here!

Everett said...

Yeah man! I keep looking in the can and the number of worms just keeps on getting bigger and bigger!

Anonymous said...

...except when one has a foolish argument.

This isn't the Soranos or the Godfather, it's small town government.

If you fear retribution from town employees (and no, I'm not one of them) I think you may be paranoid.

Marc Tillson doesn't just "show up at your door" if you speak out at a public meeting.

I will agree with you that there are a lot of people at town hall and in town administration and I am not sure exactly what some of them do, or that what they do really needs another person to do it. But in such cases you need to remember to attack the position, not the person in the position, and I think you should be specific; attacking all town employees as a group defeats your argument.

Anonymous said...

I can't believe that people think tonw hall jobs are cushy. The pay is crap,I don't know someone could live on so little. They have to give benifits otherwise no one would take those jobs.

anony said...

I guess it depends what side of the coin you're on. To some of us, the pay is respectable and year round and there's a heck of a lot of people all across America who work just for the benefits.

Sam said...

Well as Everett said, you hust might have a can of worms here ... but I worked in local and state government for years and never struck it rich, other than if you can handle the insurance part the "bennies" were pretty good.

But LOL, treated like heck, publicly demeaned ... you'd thought we had big old archery targets on our backs!

I might have a similar story from our Island ... we have a town lawyer that's been here since 1973, and says what he wants when he wants. The day he ruled against cat poop the townfolks about rebelled and formed a posse! The Fire Chief and Police Chief have been here since the 1980's, and weigh in at about 350 pounds each - meaning they can't even do duty! Talk about a can of ... you fill in the blanks.