Fresh air? Forget it

Things must really be going great in Oregon. How else to explain the results of the general election? At the state level, all the office holders got re-elected. All our five members of Congress will stay in the House. And the Democrats, who have been in charge of state government for years, regain full control of the legislature by winning a majority in the state House. In short, if you were hoping that this election would pump fresh air into public affairs in Oregon, you hoped in vain.

The idea of more personal freedom and responsibility lost too, in the defeat of the measure to legalize marijuana and get law enforcement out of what people grow and smoke. And Oregon's reputation as being hard on business -- compared to states like Idaho and Texas -- got another black eye with the approval of the measure to cancel the corporate tax rebate or credit if the state has a revenue surplus.

About the only bright spot -- from the standpoint of common sense -- was the defeat of the casino measures. Apparently Oregonians are not ready for the possibility of casinos in every town if an election approves one. Wait a second, we already have little casinos or gambling rooms at every corner where there's a pizza joint or a pub. That won't change.

So, with a few exceptions, as in Lebanon for instance, which will have a new mayor, nothing changes as a result of this election. Oregon by and large is happy with the way things are, stangant though they may be. And if things have been bad for you, too bad, you're out of luck. (hh)

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