We would have to examine the municipal government's relationship to the system as a whole - is it autonomous, or just doing the bidding of the greater system as a whole? Since developers are tied to Wall Street and their necessity is to maximize return, no matter the cost - then municipal governments engaged in such activities could be viewed as playing the supporting role. And why does Wall Street need to maximize return? Well one reason is to keep the value of our pension funds and 401k's from losing value because our system is based on a financial model which necessitates inflation(many times hidden based on the slowly eroding buying power of the dollar and wage stagnation) and perpetual growth. So in the realm of personal responsibility - although we are captive to a model that drives our investment to this system and our retirements depend on the payouts that such system tries to provide - "if most voters read their ballot information booklets" in regards to where their money flows with their investment decisions - they could realize their own culpability in the system as a whole. We could also view this in the context of the warfare state that is also directly engaged in empire building and opening markets for continued revenue stream and/or further returns. This whole corporate personhood thing, and transition to a national and multi-national rather than localized investment model occurred concurrently with and necessitated a strong, powerful and centralized Washington. And while our most glowing memory of a strong federal government helping out the citizens is FDR's new deal - it was warfare(WWII) that pulled the US out of depression. It was also the federal laws governing investment at that time that directed what remained of local investment models into a national exchange(i.e. Wall Street).
Empire building(at least our model and at this time) reduces internal investment at home and directs it outward to adventures in hubris, thus necessitating the need for more and more draconian capturing of revenue via such schemes such as the property tax confiscation in the article just to maintain funding for the various neglected local governmental duties. Marijuana legalization is also another - more PC version of this same thing.
The "small government" folks(at least the ones who would get anywhere near a decisive role in affairs) would NEVER do away with the strong central administrative role of the executive in terms of the military industrial complex or the billions in subsidies given to things such as industrial agriculture or the national security state(Homeland Security, NSA, etc.). One could argue that without this strong federal role - the reign of the multi-national corporation would be much more strained and possibly contained than it currently is.
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