Tim Eyman and the lunatic fringe

“The fact that an idea is proven as a disaster doesn’t mean it dies in American politics. One of the perverse things of our federal system is that there’s dozens of states that the advocates of these kinda lunatic measures can continue to funnel money into to try to get them on the ballot.

Basically, to get things on the ballot you just need enough money to get the paid signature gatherers in the state to qualify for these ballot measures, and so as a result, if you’ve got a fringe group of kinda anti-tax radicals, even when you’ve seen it gut a state like Colorado on health care, on education, so much more, they can get this stuff on the ballot and bring it to a vote.”
— Matt Miller


  1. 1

    LaborGoon spews:

    In our state’s case, the reason bad ideas like I-1033 get recycled again and again on the ballot is because One Knucklehead continues to make a decent living doing it.

  2. 2

    YellowPup spews:

    This was a great report, but to call Eyman a “right-wing activist” gives him too much credit.

  3. 3

    Daddy Love spews:

    “The fact that an idea is proven as a disaster doesn’t mean it dies in American politics.”

    Heck, just look at the Republican party.

  4. 4

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    I don’t think giving voters a shot at approving excessive tax increases is that big of a deal.
    It forces those in power to prove to taxpayers they are good stewards of existing tax dollars before giving them more.

    I understand the problem of conflicting Initiatives where voters simultaneously endorse higher spending and lower taxes.
    But that is NOT what is happening here.

    Fighting controls on Tax revenues is fairly easy in Washington where so many folks vote with their hearts…not their heads.
    Kids will be dumber, old people will die, helpless people will die…it’s the same old response.

    These Initiatives pass when folks feel overtaxed…either in terms of too much tax OR they aren’t getting value for their tax dollars.
    Apparently in Washington, where we have lots of Government Employees who will by an overwhelming majority vote against tax control initiatives, there are just too many activist Government Workers desperate to retain their jobs. I understand that too. But ultimately this whole tax, borrow & squander thing in Washington will reach a tipping point. If not this election, then perhaps the next.


  5. 6

    GBS spews:

    Mr. C-huckle head spewed:

    this whole tax, borrow & squander thing in Washington will reach a tipping point.

    The year was 2006 after the Republican Party inherited the greatest expanse of economic wealth in human history and turned it into an $11 TRILLION dollar deficit, evaporated $8 Trillion dollars of wealth from the stock market, $12 TRILLION dollars of real estate wealth, and untold TRILLIONS of dollars through the backdoor of the Fed Reserve with no idea who or where our TAX money went.

    You moron.

    But, hey, who can blame Tim Lie-man for running these ballot initiatives?

    Hell, the guy makes a fortune off of mindless idiot Fox News followers like Mr. C-huckle head.

  6. 9


    People who own Exxon Mobile stock profit off of roads that were built with public funds. Their profits need to be taxed more than they are, because the American taxpayer built the roads.

    They are getting a free ride at taxpayer expense. This is a concept that the teabaggers could comprehend and would point them in the right direction.

  7. 10

    GBS spews:

    Headless @ 9:

    Uhhhhh, no. Because just about every commodity in America travels our public roads at one point or another.

    But, I have ZERO problem with eliminating the hundreds of billions of dollars in sweetheart subsidy deals the “Drill, Baby, Drill” Republicans have given to the oil industry, and thus, ultimately the Saudis. Who, in turn, give American Tax Payer money to al Qeada.

  8. 11

    rhp6033 spews:

    # 4: It is rather disengenious to claim that Eyman’s initiatives lose only because government workers vote against them. Clearly, they don’t make up 51% of the electorate, or even close.

    There are lots of reasons to vote against these initiatives. What Eyman counts on is that he can push them through in an off-year election when turnout is low enough for his followers to actually make an impact in the polls.

  9. 12

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @1 And Another Knucklehead has so damn much money he doesn’t mind dipping into his own pocket to the tune of $2.7 million to keep the first Knucklehead going.

  10. 13

    David spews:

    How about this. Tim’s job is now pushing initiatives in Washington State. Fine. Keep your job Tim. But just make the initiatives silly junk, like the “We declare we love puppies” initiatives. You get to keep your fake pseudo government job (pushing unneeded initiatives) but they don’t do any harm! Problem solved! There’s no reason you need to push crazy dangerous destructive garbage.

  11. 14

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    I’ve always wondered whether Dunmire is spending his own money or someone else’s.

    Spending this kind of money on this kind of activity is a lot easier if the money isn’t yours.

    It occurs to me that $2.7 million spent on high-class prostitutes would buy a bored guy a lot more pleasure than funding Eyman initiatives possibly could — unless he’s got an irrational hatred of society.

  12. 15

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @4 “I don’t think giving voters a shot at approving excessive tax increases is that big of a deal.”

    Two points.

    1. People like you think basic education and food stamps for starving babies are “excessive.” Not everyone agrees.

    2. Voters already have a shot at approving tax increases. It’s called “elections.” If you don’t like what your legislators do, vote them out.

  13. 16


    re 10: GBS. The massive profits that the oil industry enjoys is the direct result of roads built by taxpayers. The roads were built in such profusion because the auto industry killed off mass transit in the 1920’s. They even lost a suprem court case over it and had to pay a $5,000 fine.

    The oil and auto industry profit immensely using the infrastructure built by the American taxpayer. People who own stock in these enterprises ahould pay higher taxes as they benefit from them to a greater extent than the citizen who simply commutes to work.

    Every one of those products on the road are their incidentally — except for the vehicles carrying them.

  14. 18



    “In a 1922 memo that will live in infamy, GM President Alfred P. Sloan established a unit aimed at dumping electrified mass transit in favor of gas-burning cars, trucks and buses. GM [had] lost $65 million in 1921. So Sloan enlisted Standard Oil (now Exxon), Philips Petroleum, glass and rubber companies and an army of financiers and politicians to kill mass transit..”


  15. 19


    @4 “I don’t think giving voters a shot at approving excessive tax increases is that big of a deal.”

    I agree.

    Us libertarian minded people hate government programs. They rob from the rich and give nothing to the poor.

    And progressives hate non-profit non-government organizations. I don’t know why but I have no reason to believe otherwise.

  16. 20


    re 19:

    @4 “I don’t think giving voters a shot at approving excessive tax increases is that big of a deal.”

    I think he meant to say ‘disapprove’. And ‘excessive’ would be a value judgment in that the people assessing ‘excessive’ think all taxes are excessive.

    Why would anyone approve an ‘excessive’ tax? Your entire premise is ludicrous.

  17. 21

    DavidD spews:


    Your argument fails because of one basic thing you and people like you forget.

    Government workers pay taxes too. I know a number of them that vote for every anti-tax measure there is, or at least put the signs in their yards.