November 3, 2010

Meet the New is the Old Boss!

Marc Comtois

The famous quote from Strother Martin in Cool Hand Luke also comes to mind:

What we've got here is... failure to communicate. Some men you just can't reach. So you get what we had here last [night], which is the way he wants it... well, he gets it. I don't like it any more than you men.
So.....that's it, then. Truth is, there really isn't any communication failure here. Rhode Islanders clearly like the job that Democrats and liberals are doing.

It's apparent that there just aren't enough independent, non-government/union/dependents to overcome the entrenched interests in Rhode Island. Or maybe there are, but we just can't agree on how to fight them, which is why we elect a liberal governor with 36% of the vote and allow the Democrat incumbents to remain in multiple offices that saw the various Republican/Moderate/Independent challengers garner more votes but lose because they couldn't rally behind ONE challenger.

Some will take this as the final cue to skedaddle. Others will continue to stick it out for their own reasons and will continue to fight the battles, big and small. Those who didn't support the maintenance of the RI status quo can take some comfort, I suppose, in plausible deniability: "Hey, I didn't vote for this mess!"

Well, that's not going to help defray the cost of paying the increased tax bills headed our way.

On second thought, a more appropriate paraphrase of the above quote may be, "which is the way they want we get it." Yes, indeed.

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All the talk shows endlessly pushing the Republican agenda, the Ed Achorns constantly blaming the states woes on "the unions" weren't enough to fool most Rhode Islande voters to abandon the middle class values being systematically destroyed in the quest for more and more profits on the backs of working people.

I hope this will quiet down the rhetoric for a while, and the loudmouths will put their tails between their legs and leave, or finally come to the realization that all of their talk doesn't do a damn thing, so that the rest of us can get to work and solve this mess together.

Posted by: michael at November 3, 2010 12:38 PM

The good news-with no more bailouts and stimuluses from a Republican House the state will collapse under the weight of cronyism, welfare profligacy and union pensions sooner rather than later.

“The public has spoken, so get your checkbooks out"
Anthony Carcieri

Posted by: Tommy Cranston at November 3, 2010 1:21 PM

I suppose the Republicans have no cronyism, don't get pensions and have led the charge against medicaide and welfare abuse.

We have an independent governor for the first time ever. Because he opposed the war with Iraq and turned his back on the Republican party doesn't make him a liberal. Because I belong to a union doesn't make me a liberal. I'm just a guy doing the best I can, and I have faith that our new governor will do the same.

If the people in power twenty years ago decided that a systematic overhaul of the pension system, for example, were in order, and a slow incrementation of those reforms had begun, things would be a lot different now. Instead, just like today, everybody demands change NOW and wants the credit.

I'm hoping Governor Elect Chaffee begins the process that leads to prosperity for our state.

Posted by: michael at November 3, 2010 1:34 PM

More people voted for "more conservative" candidates than voted for Chafee... the desire for reform exists in the people; it's just poorly organized. At a party level, the reform movement has no leaders. There are some good leaders in the Tea Party, and I believe they had more to do with GOP gains in the GA than the Republican State Central Committee. If they keep at it I believe they will continue to make gains.

But if the RIGOP could stop playing power games to impress their friends and focus on fixing the state... If reform was really a priority for them...

I have no doubt about it...Steve Laffey would be the Governor-elect!

Posted by: George at November 3, 2010 2:51 PM

Chaffee is a nincompoop, not a liberal. A true liberal would never suggest regressive taxes.

Alteast there is no longer a powerless Republican Governor to absorb all the blame.

Posted by: jp at November 3, 2010 2:57 PM

Just out of curiosity I had to check in on RI post-election (now that I'm living in the Southeast and, like most who've "gone Galt," have zero interest in ever re-establishing residency in RI).

I suppose the good news is that Linc and the General Assembly's Democrats and will now share the same puppet-masters, the unions and poverty pimps. Which on the calendar will move-up the fiscal collapse that (apparently) it will take to get Rhode Islanders to even begin considering altering course (and one is not sure that even that will do it).

That "stimulus" bailouts of public sector unions are now far less likely to come out of Washington is going to help accelerate the calendar too.

The bad news is that with Scott Avedesian as the highest ranking elected Republican in the state, the RIGOP will itself be even more controlled by the "moderates" and co-opted by the unions than it is now. So other than for public pretense, it won't in any real sense be an opposition party -- quite the opposite.

While I don't endorse it on a national level, the Tea Party in RI might need to be the genesis of a third party, lest there be no political candidates running in opposition to the parasitic unions and poverty industry. OTOH, such a third party would have to raise all of its money in-state from struggling private sector actors about to face even more tax pillaging from the public sector.

Good luck folks. I'm afraid RI is totally screwed. It's just hard to imagine any sort of REALISTIC scenario under which RI will pull out of its economic death spiral.

Laffey was prescient ...

Posted by: Tom W at November 3, 2010 3:19 PM

Oh Mikey you are so funny. That not so big union woody of yours is quite hilarious. Mr. 36% flaming lib Linc Chafee is a union tool through and through and the whole world knows it.
Btw even happier days are coming your way when union tinker toy Linc revokes the e-verify executive order and your world becomes an even bigger, dirtier and more crime ridden sanctuary cesspool.
On the road to prosperity with Lincoln Chafee ....hah hah hah hah

PS - Oh and Mikey sadly you and your fire bro will not enjoy the spoils of union tinker toy Linc's election. The amount of money cities and towns will be forking over to public education pigs will CONTINUE to suck your coiffers dry as 36% Chafee rigs the game even more for the ed pigs.
Enjoy that too as you "get to work to solve this mess together"!?!?! Uh with who Mike??

Posted by: Tim at November 3, 2010 4:07 PM

I have no doubt about it...Steve Laffey would be the Governor-elect!

Posted by George at November 3, 2010 2:51 PM

LOL... no doubt ?

Posted by: Sammy at November 3, 2010 4:10 PM

Forget the union/public employee/poverty pimp noise.
Just answer this-who wants an inbred crosseyed brain damaged buffoon as Governor?
About one third of the state.He's a friggin' idiot!!

Posted by: joe bernstein at November 3, 2010 4:49 PM

Actually, Joe, one sixth of the state voted for Mr. Chafee.

49% of eligible voters cast ballots. Of those, 36% voted for the top vote getter in the gov race.

Posted by: Monique at November 3, 2010 5:42 PM

So now we get to the four cornered fight, between private sector taxpayers (get ready to pay more), public sector unions (have the votes to resist any attempt at reforming benefits plans state can't afford), beneficiaries of state transfer payments and the organizations that feed off them (unions would love to push them under the bus, but don't have the votes -- and, of course, they feel the same way about the unions), and holders of bonds issued by RI state and local government (next up to "pay their fair share" after the private sector taxpayers).

Should be interesting to watch, especially if you no longer live in RI. This election -- once again, and hopefully definitively -- showed that you cannot assemble a majority reform coalition in RI. Too many people have left or simply given up all hope. The only rational choice is to leave a sinking ship. The masochistic choice is to stay.

The good news is that the rapidly worsening crisis may end up being the key to reform, not by the vote, but rather by inescapable and unbearable pressure on state and town finances.

Posted by: John at November 3, 2010 5:59 PM

Haven't you folks had enough of the negativity? Time to move on. We only have so many years in this existence, so let's go.

Posted by: michael at November 3, 2010 6:05 PM

Too much negativity, eh, Michael?

I hope this will quiet down the rhetoric for a while, and the loudmouths will put their tails between their legs and leave

Yup. All of us people generating wealth in the state of Rhode Island should shut up or leave. That's not negative, at all.

I think I know you too well to believe that you drank of the union Kool Aid to the point of inebriation, this election cycle, which leaves me thinking that you feel guilty about something.

Posted by: Justin Katz at November 3, 2010 6:46 PM

The good news is that the rapidly worsening crisis may end up being the key to reform, not by the vote, but rather by inescapable and unbearable pressure on state and town finances.
Posted by John at November 3, 2010 5:59 PM

THAT paragraph is right on target. But not till we overtake New Jersey for the Gold Medal as the highest property taxes in America.

“The public has spoken, so get your checkbooks out"
Anthony Carcieri

Posted by: Tommy Cranston at November 3, 2010 6:57 PM

"A true liberal would never suggest regressive taxes."
Posted by jp at November 3, 2010 2:57 PM

What the hell are you talking about? The Left always, always, always raises regressive taxes like property, sales, booze, cigarette, etc.
Tale Cali-foooornia and Shitcago, about the 2 most progressive places on the planet. Sales tax-10.5%.

“The public has spoken, so get your checkbooks out"
Anthony Carcieri

Posted by: Tommy Cranston at November 3, 2010 7:07 PM

I'm the most guiltless person I know. Nothing negative about getting rid of the deadwood so we can get on with it. This whole liberal vs conservative divide is ridiculous. Labeling people serves no purpose but to divide.

Posted by: michael at November 3, 2010 7:09 PM

Yet labeling people who want mostly to be left alone to build something for their lives as "deadwood" is purposeful dialogue?

Your concept is entirely backwards: It isn't divisive to use labels that accurately describe a set of traits or policies (liberal, conservative, etc.). It is divisive to set up a sizable group to be excluded from discussion.

Posted by: Justin Katz at November 3, 2010 9:03 PM

Yet labeling people who want mostly to be left alone to build something for their lives as "deadwood" is purposeful dialogue?

Posted by: Justin Katz at November 3, 2010 9:07 PM

Some people's bloodlust just can't be satisfied. 70 House seats gained, Pelosi fired..what does it take? Somebody dangling from a tree?
An independent governor happened because both parties are dysfunctional. Man up!

Posted by: bella at November 3, 2010 9:15 PM

Justin, I'm fairly certain you know exactly what and who I'm talking about, that being the constant complainers and the I'll take my ball and go home crowd.

Enough already, lets give this independent governor a chance. People constantly evolve. Negativity breeds more negativity and you become your own enemy.

Posted by: michael at November 3, 2010 9:25 PM

"Enough already, lets give this independent governor a chance."

First, there's nothing remotely "independent" about Linc, except for his detachment from reality. He really cannot relate to regular people who actually have to work and have real obligations. He's a social liberal. He thinks government is there to help you. He claims to be fiscally conservative, but that's only true if you change the meaning of the word. He just believes in raising taxes, because cutting spending is too harsh. Just because neither party wants him (heck, even the Moderates didn't want him) doesn't make him "independent."

Give him a chance to do what? He doesn't have a mandate for squat, has made more promises to more groups than he can possibly keep, and will be run over like a dead skunk by the General Assembly leadership.

I for one have known Linc for a very long time. I actually do believe he's "honest". He will honestly raise our taxes, honestly support binding arbitration, honestly repeal e-verify, and honestly give more power to public sector unions... for starters.

PS I have it from a very first hand source that at least one of the two Dem leaders in our General Assembly will NEVER go along with Chafee's 1% sales tax increase plan. I'd love to see what Chafee's option #2 is.

Posted by: Will at November 3, 2010 9:57 PM

Michael-WHY give someone a chance if they represent a point of view opposite to your own?
Do you?I doubt it.
Chafee will dismantle the working relationship between ICE and the RI State Police.Please tell me why that's a good thing.
He is also going to make it possible for companies contracting with the state to hire illegal aliens with impunity.Why is that a good thing?
All you seem to be concerned with is your precious union contract.
Chafee never has to worry about economic survival or that of his family because of money that fell into his lap.
Spare me the dilettante horseshoeing adventure.
He has exactly zero understanding of ordinary people.
His sense of entitlement to "lead" the benighted masses is hard to take.
He hopefully will get his ass kicked by the GA when they realize that his schemes will get them removed next time around.
Chafee gets the Lucky Sperm Award this year.(A term former commenter "Mike" used to apply to Matt Jerzyk).
BTW I notice Jerzyk has been absent from the blogging world.I guess he's having a hard time finding anything he can brag about in the national election results.He still has RI to make him happy.

Posted by: joe bernstein at November 4, 2010 3:23 AM

Joe, first of all I have proven here and elsewhere that "my precious union contract" is important to me but far from # 1 on my list of priorities.

I have no idea if what you say about Governor-Elect Chaffee is true concerning E-verify and the ICE State Police relationship. I'm simply cautiously optimistic that a governor that is neither democrat or republican might be what we need to get this state headed in the right direction. I started this comment thread by saying that had our leaders started fixing the pension system 20 years ago it might actually be fixed now. Instead, since I've been a participant nothing has changed, except for the value to tank to the point of insolvency.

I've heard the talk for years. "End Pensions Now!," "Abolish Public Sector Pensions, NOW," "401 K, NOW!"

It is not happening NOW. Nothing is happening NOW. A bunch of morons squabling among themselves while giving hundred thousand dollar a year part time jobs with pensions and healthcare is what is happening, NOW.

You worked hard for yours, I work hard for mine. Politics is NOW such a game that we have lost sight of what is doable, and what is not. Somebody needs to get the ball rolling and be willing to have somebody else get the credit twenty years from now. And I think Linc Chaffee is the best shot at that we have.

Posted by: michael at November 4, 2010 4:05 PM

Michael-you can believe me or not-I know as much about immigration as you do about firefighting.I wouldn't presume to suggest what proper manning on a truck should be.
What I have stated is based on Chafee's own remarks which I heard from him in an interview,not second hand info.
BTW this is the second year in a row I'm getting no COLA on my pension,VA disability benefits,nor my pittance of a social security payment-I'm not whining about it.
The Federal government had pension reform in 1984-it wasn't retroactive,so I stayed with the old system-even the old system didn't have "automatic" COLA's.And Federal retirees pay for health care benefits-mine went up 22% this year-I have to carry a family plan even though only my wife uses it-all these giveaway plans in RI can't be continued.
I'm not suggesting retroactive pension reform-just to start it with new hires.If they don't like it-don't take the job to begin with.
Lincoln Chafee has 47 million in net worth and still acts like a cheapskate scumbag when it comes to taxes.
Yesterday I went to city hall to have my mortgage payoff recorded and they charged $49 just to stamp a piece of paper.I think my real estate taxes should cover that kind of thing.It took about 4 minutes-nice hourly rate there.
Chafee's tax scam alone involving his 11(!)vehicles and homestead exemption should be sufficient to exemplify the rotteness of his character.Also the screw job he did on McCain who went to the mat for him.This woosy loser hasn't the balls to apologize to McCain-he admitted so on radio.
The Whitehouse-Chafee election was the worst I ever voted in.
I feel it is my duty to vote so I went with Chafee because I actually worked with Whitehouse's US Attorney's Office and he was a miserable,incompetent,arrogant,and frankly stupid human being.

Posted by: joe bernstein at November 4, 2010 10:32 PM