Tax & BudgetVoters' Guide

2018 Measure 103

Amends Constitution: Prohibits taxes/fees based on transactions for “groceries” (defined) enacted or amended after September 2017

 No Taxes on Our Daily Bread

It’s a truism that government rulers never think they have enough money, and that voters always think the government has more than enough. Much of politics these days is the back and forth battle over the control of the citizens property (money), tightly connected to life and liberty. Measure 103 is a bit unique, being a preemptive strike, so to speak, in that battle. We like this new tactic. The best defense is often a good offense.

For years, Oregonians have successfully fought off attempts by liberals to impose a sales tax. That is largely because they believe that a sales tax will just be another way to increase total state taxation on our hard-earned money, no matter how they might message it.

If passed, this Measure would prohibit state and local governments from enacting taxes, fees, or assessments on the sale of groceries. Taxes on groceries are particularly objectionable, since food is necessary for simple survival. Grocery taxes strike hardest at the poor, since they spend a high proportion of their money on food.

Another good reason to vote for Measure 103 is the growing fad among taxing authorities to act like parents, manipulating what we should eat via high taxes on specific products. These attempts to dictate our food choices are particularly controlling, and highly restrictive of liberty. And, frankly, they are insulting!

Christians are urged to be wise as serpents (Matt. 10:16). As Israel entered the Promised Land, God taught them battle strategies, including feints, encirclement tactics, etc. (Judges 8). There were, of course, times when God miraculously destroyed our enemies. But for the most part, our Lord wants us to be mature and wise, using good strategies and tactics to protect the resources He has entrusted to us. Manna ceased, and agricultural work began when we entered the promised land.

Measure 103 would put an ounce of tax prevention in the Constitution, meaning the Legislature could not enact such taxes without another vote of the people. This seems like a wise precaution, given our current Legislature, which seems to have an insatiable appetite for more and more money and control. They are like the undisciplined man who must be “controlled by bit and bridle” (Ps. 32:8). This Measure, like Measure 104, is a bit in the government’s hungry mouth, ensuring future freedom from having even our daily bread taxed and “eaten” by an out of control state government. We urge a Yes vote on Measure 103.

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