Friday, May 4, 2012

Politics, budget cuts, and the same old same old

Disclaimer: When it comes to politics at a state or national level, I'm a cynic. In my view, few people run for major office because of some altruistic desire to improve the conditions in which we all live; they do it for power and to massage their inflated self-importance.

That said, I think most state and national politicians cater to two groups of people and projects, the ones they're most familiar with and the ones whose advocates holler loudest. The first group is often large business interests, as seen by Pennsylvania's Governor Tom Corbett and the way he limply handed the state over to the natural gas drilling companies without taxing their profits. He acquiesced a bit by allowing local municipalities to tax if they so choose, but that doesn't help the overall state coffers.

Now he's got to balance a budget, so he's doing what the big guys do. He proposes 20% cuts in funding to groups who don't holler loud, who don't massage his ego, and who don't vote. Community mental health and mental disability services, drug and alcohol outpatient treatment, homeless assistance, and child welfare grants are the victims of his choice, in addition to everyone's favorite target, public education.

What vulnerable populations learn by your proposal, Governor Corbett, is that their safety and their health and well-being are less important than the hand-shake deals you make with big business. As Ann Landers said,
Keep in mind that the true measure of an individual is how he treats a person who can do him absolutely no good.
Better be careful, Governor. You're character is showing.


  1. Corbett is not, and never was, more than a pawn in the pockets of big business. It's unfortunate, but what's more unfortunate is everyone's ignorance and blindness to the situation. Right now, I'm going to stop myself because, after last night's Daily Show, I feel I may dive into an out-of-control rant on the stupidity and utter absurdity of our elected officials.

  2. Your blog is a good venue for your rant, Dale, especially because your writing shows you to be intelligent and compassionate. If only our legislators could say the same.