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I didn’t elect you to do whatever you want to do

Craig Hall, Publisher

Craig Hall, Publisher

More importantly, I didn’t elect you to do what I want you to do, either. The same goes for the folks who got elected that I didn’t vote for. As a matter of fact, I think this same thing of every elected politician across the federal, state and local levels save this one demand: Stick to the constitutions and charters you swore to uphold.

That in and of itself should prevent you from doing whatever the heck you want. Because politicians doing what they think is best (or what their supporters and donors think is best) is pretty much what has gotten this country into the mess it’s in — unless you’re in Colorado, where if you have enough money and signatures you can get your silly ideas on the ballot and screw the process up personally and not use your favorite political Mortimer Snerd to do your bidding.

Doing what you think is a brilliant idea to “save jobs” or “grow our economy” or any other half-baked idea where you intend to confiscate taxpayer dollars from “the hard working American citizens” (hint, we ALL are that work) to benefit special interests or constituencies is how you get Obamacare, stimulus programs, bailouts, “green” energy subsidies, local theaters and whole bunch of other political boondoggles governed by ABC bureaucracies.

The fact is, most folks have no idea what their city council, county commissioners, state reps and the folks on the federal level are up to, and probably couldn’t care less. I guess for some that stems from their expectations these elected few are actually decent public servants; from others who are sycophants who’re actually true believers in the omniscience of those they support; or those that are actually spending so much of their time taking care of their lives, jobs and families to notice just how much harder these same politicians are actually making their lives. Sadly, this is what politicians rely on: naivete, worship and apathy in the voting public. How else can you explain someone passing laws to which they’re not subject while having no recourse for screwing up peoples’ lives via these same laws and get away with it?

This behavior knows no party or affiliation. After all, didn’t the “stimulus” pass pretty easily to “bring the country back from the brink?” Was it not George W. Bush who basically said that he had to abandon the free market to save the free market while implementing Hillary Clinton’s stimulus, the auto bailouts, bank bailouts — all of which, of course, led to all of the “shovel ready” projects of the pork laden, union pandering, special interest benefitting stimulus package under President Obama? Here’s another ditty for you, our country still spends that extra almost $800 BILLION per year from the stimulus by not passing a budget and using “continuing resolutions” to fund the government.

And this is all neatly hidden by the fake debates over “raising the debt ceiling,” for which the free-spending politicians are all in favor. It’s just that they demonize each others’ overspending to get away with their own. We argue debt ceilings and take sides, and in the meantime we have deficit spending of more than $1 TRILLION per year, every year. If you still don’t believe that Washington is hooked on overspending your tax dollars, then explain to me why the argument isn’t over a balanced budget, but rather which party can reduce the deficit by a few billion more? Trust me, they all believe in the power of the press. It’s just that their presses are the only ones with the ability to print dollars.

A little closer to home we have the Avalon Theater debacle. Once again, I have no problem with saving what some in town consider a “cultural jewel.” What I have against it is in the funding. Here, a handful of elected politicians decided what is best culturally for the rest of us. It’s also easier to convince four or five of the people you hang out with by stacking a meeting room with supporters while the rest of “hard working” folks were busy than in taking a vote of the people, who were sure to send this project to a resounding defeat at the polls. But that’s what government does, fund things that don’t work in the free market.

To prove this further, at the state level we have Ray Scott promoting his pandering to the natural gas and environmental lobbies by subsidizing sales of vehicles that use natural gas, propane and diesel with special tax credits. When challenged on the topic, Scott didn’t talk about the special handout, but rather snarked back that the bill saves taxpayers $1.5 million in tax money. I don’t have a problem with the folks in Denver restructuring the tax code to save taxpayers some money, but I don’t know how giving a bunch of my tax money to special folks who can afford certain vehicles achieves that end.

All of these folks tend to think they’re exceptional politicians when they present these ideas; exceptionalism evidently bestowed by winning a vote. But in truth, they’re just politicians. And politicians are all about money and votes. And more and more, doing what they think is best for them, certainly not us.

About
Since June of 2000, Craig Hall has been the owner/publisher of the Grand Valley Business Times. He can reached at 970-424-5133 or publisher@thebusinesstimes.com
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Posted by on Apr 9 2014. Filed under From The Publisher, Opinion. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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