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Archive for the ‘politics’ Category

The Last Best Hope is not Enough

Posted by heyrandy on April 16, 2010

I like Ron Paul. He is a genuine pain to both halves of the Establishment of this country. He does not go along, but he gets along. It is the others that do not get along. They go along.

I think people with his views are the only hope for the country. His views about returning to the Constitution are what we need. He is a lone voice crying above the cesspool called politics. That he survives unsullied tells us of his genuineness. This genuineness is unique in modern politics.

It is not enough. I would vote for Paul in any election, for any office, anywhere. But even if elected as President he is not going to do any long term good. This is not a reflection on Paul’s integrity or ability. It is a stark reality of American politics.

Most people think that the politicians run the country. The politicians think they do. Some people think that a secret elite runs the country. They do. The bureaucrats know that they run the country. The politicians know this too. So do some reformers. Most voters do not. The elite do not care about the bureaucrats.

The President has at most eight years. Some have had only four. Some have had less. A few have almost had less. Eight years is nothing for a tenured bureaucrat. He can easily wait for the next politician. Once a reformer is gone a hack takes over and all is returned to the status quo ante. “As it was in the beginning, so it is now and forever shall be. Amen.” This is the hymn of every government bureaucrat.

The only things bureaucrats fear are violating the rules and a budget cut. Rules are the reason the bureaucracy exists. Money is its food. Without funds, bureaus die. No one long works free.

Parkinson’s Law states that all work expands to consume available resources. This is a fundamental law of bureaucracy. No reformer can change the desire of every bureaucrat to have an assistant.

The bureaucrats make the rules, but the politicians have the power of the money. Politicians are loath to cut spending. Too many jobs will be lost if spending is cut. Unemployed bureaucrats might vote for the other candidate. Why take the chance when it costs you nothing to play it safe. Spending other people’s money is safe. No politician campaigns on the claim that he voted to close some taxpayer funded boondoggle in his district. Politicians who do this are not re-elected. That obviously unnecessary military base may no longer be needed, but “it is the heart of the community.” Heartless communities do the unthinkable: elect someone else.

The government run schools are probably the one area where reform could take place. They are usually administered locally, so are closer to the people who fund them. Here all change has proved to be superficial and cosmetic. The school are still a tangle of bureaucratic bloat, efficient only at making kids stupid and somewhat compliant to government.

I wish reformers well. You are our last best hope. But you are not enough.

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They Do Not Mean Anything, But We Have A Lot Of Them

Posted by heyrandy on September 9, 2009

I am collecting political platitudes and slogans.  The type I am really interested in are those that at first sound good but are revealed as vacuous when closely examined. For example, Change You Can Believe In. I have no idea what this means. Is there a change that I cannot believe in?

The best slogans and platitudes reflect those ideas that no politician would dare oppose, e.g.,  Protect Social Security. Sayings about getting more jobs for one’s constituents are always welcome. Anything to do with government run schools is a treasure.

If you find a example that you think is interesting, send your submissions to politicalslogans@gmail.com. I will sort them into categories according to subject. Let me know if you want credit for your entries. The deadline for submissions is Halloween Day, 2009. I will post the results on Election Day, 2009.

This is an important project; I am counting on you, so remember We need to Just Say No, Put Aside Partisan Politics, Stand United for a Stronger America, and Fight Crime and the War on Drugs to get Good Paying Jobs and Affordable Housing. If they can say it, you can send it.

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She Did

Posted by heyrandy on August 29, 2009

I have received a reply from Mrs. Behlok. She thanked me for viewing her website and restated her promise of open government. I suggested that it would go a long way toward open government if we put the check book registers of the Town of Henrietta and the Rush-Henrietta School District on line.

I expressed disappointment that she wanted effect her goals by using state and federal moneys. I told her that the money we get from higher government levels is not free but comes from taxpayers. I pointed out that the electric company sent its customers a notice that the state is requiring the utility to collect a new tax. The utility does not profit from this. “Where,” I asked, “does it end?”

At least I got a response. It is a start on a long road that ends at the cliff.

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A Visitor

Posted by heyrandy on July 28, 2009

The other day a nice man came to the house.  The dog also thought the man was nice but only if mauled and eaten.  Once I had sequestered the dog, the man explained why he came to the dullest spot in town.  He wanted to speak to the registered Republican to get the registered Republican to sign a petition to place on the ballot the name of a person seeking the office of county legislator.  The registered Republican was not I but the person not then at home.  The nice man left a flier that named Jackie Mendez as the person seeking not so high office.

The flier is one folded page, glossy paper, and full color.  It even has a press apply label on the back giving the new web site address of Ms.  Mendez.  I read the flier.  The flier lists Ms. Mendez’s agenda.  The flier also has three pictures of Ms. Mendez: one on the front with the flag; one inside with the nice man, her husband; and one on the back showing her sitting with our current county executive before an open binder full of papers.  In the background of this photograph are flag tassels and things in frames.

It is the agenda that interested me.  Normally I don’t pay a lot of attention to political statements.  This is because I think that the major flaw with most elections is that someone gets elected.  It always seems to be the wrong person.  It does not matter if I vote for them; they are still the wrong person.

In the last election, when our current president and his whack job of a side kick were running against what’s-his-name and Who?, I just could not decide who was the wrong person for whom not to vote.  I had the same problem when I looked at the candidates for the person who does not represent me in Washington, D.C.  The incumbent first voted against the zillion dollar stupid Ivy League educated banker bailout.  Then when the bill failed, lots of goodies were added to get it passed.  The soon to be ex incumbent voted for it.  This meant that I was going to have to look at the challenger.  The challenger’s sole qualification was that he was a retired Navy Captain.  This made the choice easy: I didn’t vote for either candidate.

Sometimes it is easy to decide for whom not to vote.  A couple of school board elections ago, a candidate mailed to our house a post card.  The text of the card had several grammatical errors.  I knew immediately for whom not to vote: her opponent.  When a candidate for the school board sends you illiterate campaign literature, you owe it to the cause of government run education to elect that person to an oversight position.  How can you go wrong?  I voted for her.

Since the election is coming in November no matter what I do, I have to make a decision on how to vote.  So I wrote to Ms. Mendez. Ms. Mendez’s site has a convenient “contact Jackie” feature.  I used it.  I wrote her a letter asking for details of how she is going to accomplish all that she lists as her agenda.

I have not yet received a reply.  This does not disturb me.  The details of a plan require careful formulation.  This is why they are seldom listed in campaign literature.  Another reason they are not listed is that no one is really interested, unless you are a nut like me.

Being undaunted by the lack of a quick response, I wrote her another letter.  This letter is about a major county and city partnership in a downtown arts center and bus station, the Renaissance Center.  It is a kind of diesel and Shakespeare amalgamation.   Try to think of Hamlet on the Park and Ride.  There are reasons why you can’t get this sort of thing in the privater sector.  Good ones, too.  I wanted to know her opinion on the project.  The county executive and the city mayor are battling each other over this project, so it is important to know how one’s representative stands on the matter.

It has just been reported by the news that the Renaissance Center has missed an important deadline to get the much needed federal funds.  This does not mean that the project is dead, it only means that the project is postponed.  There will be lots of blame to pin on political enemies, but rest assured that the project will be resurrected.  With the Obama administration looking for “shovel ready” pyramids to build, the likelihood of permanently loosing the federal money is nil.  The taxpayers can’t ever be that lucky.

I am still waiting for a reply.  The wait gives me a chance to practice my patience.  Maybe the nice man will come back.  The dog hopes so.

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