It's his M.O., it's what he does, spoon feed you just enough information to keep you stupid. He can pretend he's being open and 'factual', but what he's really doing is manipulating reality. It's an image thing, an agenda thing. He wants you to believe in the falsehood that's he's on the up-and-up, but what he's really doing is keeping you in the dark.
From Sullivan's information omissive blog, Sullivan's Salvos:
*Property Tax Rates
It is campaign season in Johnson County. That means you are going to hear many half-truths. For example, lots of people like to lie about property tax rates in Johnson County, claiming, “they are some of the highest in the country!”
Wrong! Here are the facts - 43 Iowa Counties have higher property tax rates than Johnson County, ranking Johnson 44 out of the 99 counties. (Source: Iowa State Association of Counties.)
Elections do not give people license to lie about the facts. When somebody tells you your property tax rates are high, I hope you will set them straight.
Sullivan is right, elections do not give people license to lie about the facts, and yet that's exactly what he's done here by omission. He intentionally misleads people with a half-truth, half a calculation.
Sullivan is spinning the very legitimate argument that property taxes in Johnson County are the highest in the state. It's about what people are paying out of their pocket. But Sullivan wants to distract you with a rate chart.
Sullivan wants to point you to a chart done by the Iowa State Association of Counties. It lays out the property tax rates for all Iowa Counties and Johnson County does in fact rank pretty much in the middle of the pack for all Iowa Counties. The problem is, the chart does NOT factor in home values...... And Sullivan KNOWS this, yet fails to acknowledge it in making his argument. It's a blatant manipulation of reality.
A person with a three bedroom home in Johnson County is going to pay far more in taxes than a person with the same exact three bedroom home in Story County (Ames). Why? Because of inflated house values. Sullivan KNOWS this, but doesn't admit it - he's trying to keep you in the dark.
Reality: Johnson County taxpayers rank highest in the state on the “median property taxes paid,” at $2,702 per home. This is 195th highest nationally and is enough to rank in the top 10 percent of all U.S. counties. Johnson is followed by Dallas and Polk Counties (greater Des Moines area) on this ranking.
The Tax Foundation gives you the WHOLE truth, not a half. The information Sullivan is trying to feed you with his Iowa State Association of Counties rate chart isn't untruthful, but it's only half a story, an incomplete formula, part of a recipe. The lie comes in how Sullivan is using it to try and convince you that property taxes in Johnson County aren't high.
Johnson County Supervisor Rod Sullivan, once again, is full of crap.