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Waitsfield, VT 05673
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"Just decision based on point of view"

05/29/2008

To The Editor:

I had a history teacher once who offered a startling opinion in class about the definition of the word justice.
 
"Justice," he told us with a broad grin, "is when I win!"

His point was that the whole concept of a just decision was based on your point of view. If your side won, the process had worked. If not, it must have been flawed. I've been following the debate in town over the revote on the Waitsfield Municipal Water Project and I have to admit that it looks like my old teacher may have been right.  
 
On Town Meeting Day, Waitsfield voters voted against three proposed bond issues that were to fund the $19.7 million water system: 442 (51 percent) to 398 (46 percent). The folks who have championed the June 10 revote on the bond had every legal right to do so. They didn't like the result of the Town Meeting vote, so they asked for and succeeded in getting another crack at winning.  
 
It's unlikely that the turnout next month will be as high as it was in March, meaning that fewer people will be involved in deciding whether or not the town should commit to this project. That's too bad, but it's also what's apt to happen. Government by attrition is never desirable as it disenfranchises citizens. It's also not just, no matter how you define it.


Peter Cammann

Waitsfield

Editor's Note: On Town Meeting day, voters cast ballots on three separate articles for municipal wastewater and water. The water vote was, as Cammann points out, 442 to 398. The first wastewater article was defeated 484 to 336. The second wastewater article required a yes vote on the first article to pass and received 297 yes votes to 254 no votes.

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