Stories from one small town to another: Tax Fairness ain’t no joke


The people of ROP are pulling out all the stops to fight for tax fairness – while having a good time, building community and setting themselves up for a great 2010.

To inspire your thinking about how to bring a progressive voice for tax fairness & common sense to your county…here are some stories from rural Oregon of people taking on a campaign with laughter, spirit & a vision for the future.

Junction City New Years Party!


Seeking Out Democracy of Junction City decided to have a New Years celebration where their core members can reconnect in an informal Postcard Party after a tumultuous year of new babies, new jobs, and lots of work!  They decided that they wanted a chance to catch up with friends and group members, but also wanted to do something to get the word out about Measures 66 & 67 to their local contact list.  They’re using their own version of this postcard, and will hand address them, writing special notes to their members.  You can download a sample Happy New Year postcard here.

Tillamook Neighborhood walks!


It all started at the Pancake House. Tillamook County Citizens for Human Dignity met at the Pancake House to plan out our tax fairness campaign, we asked the owner to post a Small Business Voting YES for Tax Fairness sign in her window. She said YES! And that kicked off much hopefulness about bringing Tax Fairness to Tillamook County!


TCCHD and friends hit the streets two weeks ago, canvassing local small businesses & doorknocking a neighborhood. Armed with the ROP County Specific Voter Guide & their own local tool – an adorable TCCHD tax fairness flyer – they were a formidable crew talking to nearly 200 households in one afternoon. They are going back for more, getting the word out and eating their fair share of locally made pancakes from a favorite small business in Tillamook County.

 Crook County says ‘We Are the Media!’

They are taking back the local paper, one opinion at a time. The Human Dignity Advocates know the power of the local newspaper – and also what a struggle it is to get a consistent fair progressive voice in those papers! Out of that vacuum came the “Rural Media Lead.” Steven has taken on the position! He regularly reads the papers and sends out "Media Alerts" to HDA leaders and other willing LTE writers. The beauty of the RML is that he ties in a little humor and storytelling with his Alerts, keeping them fun and easy to read. This helps us laugh now and then at some stories that might otherwise get our blood boiling.  Group members then take turns writing responses to the letters, sharing a pro-tax fairness message or another message about justice, democracy and inclusiveness.


What is your group doing to support tax fairness in your community?

Tax fairness can be fun and different than the traditional campaign chatter, but whatever it is for you, Tax Fairness is not a joke. We are talking about a real shift in how we tax the wealthy and the corporations in our state. This is a moment for working people to stand strong against the fear rhetoric that is being used by the Right and the Big-Business-Anti-Tax Lobby. Fair taxes are about strong local communities, resilient economies & creating a level playing field for small businesses to compete.

The mighty pen! – Crook County is just one site of the Rural Media Center

As one ROP Rural Media Center member wrote in a Letter to the Editor this week: “We all use these services [state funded services like schools, healthcare & public safety] and I’m tired of picking up the slack for big business that always cries wolf when it’s their time to chip in. This time, I’m calling your bluff big business – where’s the wolf?”

This week, write your own Letter to the Editor to your newspaper about Thanksgiving, vital services & what you are thankful for. Can you guess what big business is Oregon is thankful for? [Hint…it starts with $10 and ends in !!!]  The next few days are prime time to get our message out around the need to support Measures 66 & 67.  What about taxes are you thankful for this Thanksgiving?  Write your own or pull from this sample letter, and submit your letter today to your local paper! (let know if you submt a letter)

 Let me know how your group is using tax fairness to build your community or to shine a light on the silliness of the anti-tax mantra. Stories are always appreciated!