- Eye on Media
It seems that advocates for county administrator are doing a lot of speculating about the voters true intentions when they voted down Measure 6-144. The paper, for example, asserts that because winning candidates favored the measure then by association the voters secretly, in their heart of hearts, DO want an administrator. The paper writes, “…voters rejected the …appointment of a county administrator, while electing two commissioners” who campaigned in favor of abdicating their duties to a hired employee.
This is commonly known as an association fallacy.
In notation of first-order logic, this type of fallacy can be expressed as (∃x ∈ S : φ(x)) → (∀x ∈ S : φ(x)), meaning “if there exists any x in the set S so that a property φ is true for x, then for all x in S the property φ must be true.”
Premise A is a B
Premise A is also a C
Conclusion Therefore, all Bs are Cs
The fallacy in the argument can be illustrated through the use of an Euler diagram: “A” satisfies the requirement that it is part of both sets “B” and “C”, but if one represents this as an Euler diagram, it can clearly be seen that it is possible that a part of set “B” is not part of set “C”, refuting the conclusion that “all Bs are Cs”.
The paper asks how “reform-minded leaders” might “continue to pursue change without appearing to ignore the people’s voice”? Then answers the question by turning to a biased, incredible report from pro administrator consultants to enable the commissioners to hire someone for the position by calling it something else. (Slap a saddle on that jackass and call it a racehorse – [thanks aghast!]).
Regardless of their stance on an administrator and what they ultimately campaigned for, John Sweet and Melissa Cribbins signed up and ran for the job of a full time, working, paid commissioner. Voters are long familiar with the job and have their own expectations of what it takes to be a commissioner. It is reasonable to accept that voters rejected the measure without ambiguity. It is reasonable to consider voters believed Sweet and Cribbins were the best qualified to fulfill their expectations and without hiring finance directors and chief administrative officers. After all, reform may be nice and even improve efficiency but it doesn’t solve the underlying problem… revenue.
Seventy percent of the county’s private property is taxed on “special assessments” that greatly reduce the taxable value and thereby lower the effective rates of these larger property owners. These special assessments also deprive the local taxing districts of badly needed revenue. If Sweet and Cribbins are really reform-minded perhaps they might want to tackle that problem.