Bazzo Says: Bring On The Liberal Hordes!

Bazzo Says:

BY ANTHONY J. BAZZO

OF YORKTOWN NEWS

TITLE: Bring On The Liberal Hordes!

Last week a letter published in this publication by Cliff Weber took me and my ideas to task. Here is my response to that letter.

Weber: Mr. Bazzo’s Everyman style is colorful theater: but his substantive message, such as it is, is nothing more than repackaged rightist cant.

Bazzo: Nothing is repackaged. Words, thoughts and ideas are mine after careful study of given topics. Besides, I do not need anybody to tell me how I feel or what I think about topics discussed. This is critic’s attempt to marginalize my commentary as not being mine,but someone else’s.

Weber: He invokes weary economic mantras-government is the source of all evil, regulation is choking the “unleashing” of entrepreneurial energy, the wise and invisible hand of the market-all in the service of the discredited notion of unrestrained capitalism.

Bazzo: There has been no “unrestrained capitalism” since Teddy Roosevelt. From The Food And Drug Act which cleaned up the food packing industry, to using the Sherman Anti-Trust Act to break up the railroads and Sun Oil Company. Empowering the Interstate Commerce Commission to set rail rates and settle labor disputes. Using the Interior Department to confiscate 230 million acres of land creating our first national parks.

As those ideas were well intentioned and necessary, as anything unchecked (including government) becomes a licence to harm the people and consumer. However, since then these bureaucracies grow and regulate without consideration to positive changes that have occurred. These regulators then become keepers of their own fiefdoms and create rules to perpetuate and justify their existence.

You want examples, see anti-smoking regulations, CAFE standards, calorie counts, bike helmet laws. Not to mention idling laws, recycling laws including the now attempt to ban plastic bags in favor of forcing shoppers to use reusable bags where studies are showing these bags are responsible for the increase in food born bacterial infections as people need to wash out these bags after every use.

Weber: Perhaps Mr. Bazzo can identify specifically which federal laws or agencies should be abolished or weakened. Child labor laws? The Federal Aviation Administration? The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation? The Securities and Exchange Commission?
Bazzo: Of course the critic must pick those agencies that hurt people the most. The critic ignores the low hanging fruit that can be down sized or eliminated. This is the critics attempt to scare the uniformed into believing government can never get smaller.

You want me to name government,agencies that can be shut down or scaled back significantly? Let’s start with the Department of Energy. It’s initial mission statement was to wean us off of foreign imported oil. At the time we were importing 20% of our oil. Now it is 60%. As their failures continued, their budget and staff multiplied.

Of course they did not act alone. You have the Department of Interior expanding the government’s taking of land and banning exploration. Nullifying as the first order of business in 2009 the contracts entered into by the Bush Administration, which had the then affect of lowering energy prices as the hope of more resources would reach the market place. They no longer take land for the public good, they take for government control.

The consequences of the Interior Departments action has been the more that doubling of energy costs since 2009. The uninformed believe the Presidents lies about his policies making more petroleum available. He is taking credit for the finds on private lands such as those found in North Dakota. He stated during his State Of The Union Address that because of his energy policies Americans are enjoying lower energy costs, which anybody with eyes can see is an abject lie. How ever because He said it, the stupid believe it is true.

Next up is the Environmental Protection Agency. Since 2009 their budget has increased 125%. Their staff quadrupled. This is a pure example of an agency passing regulations to justify their existence. Example: There have been four Environmental Impact Statements in regards to the Keystone Pipeline. Volume 2 is devoted to the impact on the American Burying Beetle. This is now a federally protected invertebrate. They act as though this species which has been here longer than man is incapable of relocating. Statement 4 says that the project will have no substantial,impact in global greenhouse emissions. This is being ignored by the anti-growth zealots in favor if statement 2. Since the beginning of the year, they have released 700 hundred more pages regulating the energy industry.

All these above agencies can be scaled back significantly as they now do more harm to us in their effort to,justify their existence.
Weber: He may wish to live in a world of penniless 10-year-old chimney sweeps, uncharted air traffic, bank runs and predatory stock peddlers. I don’t.

Bazzo: Like the President’s demagoguery of sequester, Pest-infested crops will increase. A shortage nationwide of meat and poultry. Prison lock downs. A furlough of nearly 37,000 Bureau of Prisons staff. Slower gun background checks. Fewer FBI agents. Immigration backlog. The inability to hire immigration judges. Longer waits for passports and visas. Neglect for the mentally ill, the homeless, and the substance-addicted. 125,000 would be at risk of homelessness etc., despite the fact that no agency gets less money, in fact they get a minimum of 6% more, well above the rate of inflation. My critic wishes to paint a false picture in attempts to convince you that the sky will fall if government is not reigned in.

The sequester figure is not 85 billion dollars, it is 44 billion dollars split between domestic and military spending. Our budget is 3 trillion dollars. It is only the stupid that believes the sky will fall if out of that, 44 billion in anticipated spending is cut. That is the rub. It is anticipated spending that is cut, not real dollars.

Weber: On the social front, Mr. Bazzo lines up squarely behind those folks who, along with their reactionary ancestors, bitterly opposed the enactment of landmark progressive legislation, beginning with Social Security and continuing through Medicare.

Bazzo: If my critic has to lie to make a point, he has no point to make. I have never written in opposition to Social Security, Medicare or even Medicaid. I have written that they have grown to no longer resemble their mission statements. This is true.

Weber: The Family Medical Leave Act, and now, the Affordable Care Act. During the debates on each of these forward-looking laws, Mr. Bazzo’s political soul mates predicted that their adoption would weaken our moral fiber and corrode cherished American values. In their fevered imaginings, they foresaw the very demise of Western civilization. Not surprisingly, these alarmist forecasts proved false.

Bazzo: These forecasts have not yet been proven false as their impacts have yet to be fully felt. Yet in regards to the The Affordable Care Act, it is proving to be anything but affordable. The CBO predicts that by 2016 the costs of a private health care policy for family of four will increase to $20,000.00 a year. Prescription drug prices have more than doubled since its passage. Business are firing or not hiring to come under the mandates. We have yet to feel the affects of Obama Care’s funding the hiring of 6,000 new IRS agents to enforce the new taxes and mandates. If you think any good is going to come from these forward looking laws, you are nuts!

As for “fevered imaginings” time has now proven the dire forecasts predicted in the “War On Poverty” true. We have spent multiple trillions of dollars on that war, more than we spent on “Bush’s Wars”, yet poverty is reported to be the same now as then. How is that? Easy, they keep changing the definition of poverty. The American poor have no idea what true poverty is. We no longer treat their needs, now we pay for their wants. The fact is we all want.

The destruction of the nuclear family by these policies is no longer in dispute. In New York City alone, 77% of all births are out of wedlock. You want child health care? $90,000.00 in household income a year qualifies you for federal and New York State health care via the CHIPS Programs. You can thank Hillary Clinton on the federal level and former Governor David Patterson on the state level. $90,000.00 is now in terms of health care, considered poor. Consequently, people in that wage bracket dropped their coverage and joined these government programs. There are between federal and New York state governments 84 different programs (not including Medicaid) doing the same thing.

How about education? There are 25 federal pre-school programs, not including Head Start. Add in the multiple programs at the State and County level. Add in the multiple children’s food programs, and day care programs at the federal, state and county level. We in New York spend between $18,000 and $20,000 per student and what do we have to show for it? Just last week it was reported 80% of high school graduates in New York City are illiterate. They can’t read at high school levels.. That 80% are just the people who are going to community college.

To my critics, none of these can be eliminated without doing untold harm to the children. In fact, to my critics, these failures would only go to prove we need more money and more government programs. To the critic the only thing that matters is intent, consequences, no matter how harmful, are to be ignored.
.Weber: Young, educated and ethnically diverse voters overwhelmingly support the President and his policies, major themes (of which are tolerance), a public/private sector collaboration and smartening government. Angry, intolerant, old and predominantly Caucasian males don’t have a lock on this place anymore.

Bazzo: Again another demonstrated lie. In My recent column “Can You Get To Heaven Without Dying First?” I link to two polls, one the New York Times, the other Gallup that show yes, the people support the President, but DO NOT support his policies. Here again for the uniformed are the links AGAIN:

http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/02/12/polls-show-dissatisfaction-with-countrys-direction-but-support-for-obamas-agenda/

http://www.gallup.com/poll/160385/obama-rated-highest-foreign-affairs-lowest-deficit.aspx

It is their being uniformed, purposely ignorant or just plain stupid that they do not equate those policies with the President and the consequences of those policies.

Not even Nixon has there been one more intolerant of dissent than this President.

Weber: The electorate has changed, permanently, and we are all better for it. In short, you lost the war of ideas and we won.

Bazzo: For now the electorate has changed. But the pendulum swings both ways. If you look around, other than the “gimme brigade” no one is better off. A question to my critics: We now have 47 million people receiving food stamps, up from 21 million in 2009. Are they better off being dependent on government? Or could it be the policies of this President that has cost us the loss of 8 million jobs that existed in 2009? Are they better off? The war of ideas is never over. Just because my desired candidates lost, does not mean my ideas lost. However, my critics would love it if I would think so.

Weber: The respective roles of the states and federal government and the relationship of individuals to both, along with taxes, limits on Constitutional rights, immigration and budget reduction, are all enduring subjects about which reasonable people can and do differ.

Bazzo: There is nothing reasonable about the debate from the liberal, Democrat position. Just demagoguery. Their objective is to eliminate the Republicans as competitors in the arena of ideas. For the first time in my lifetime, it is in the political interests of a president to inflict maximum pain on the American people. His behavior during the sequester debate and since all but proves it. We are witnessing a government at war with its people.

Weber: We will continue to debate these issues, secure in the knowledge that buggy whips are not required for entry into the conversation and that no mortal—not even you—is a truth monopolist.

Bazzo: It is not I who wishes to be a monopolist. I have publicly welcomed not only the debate, but competing columnists. It is my critics who wish to silence competing ideas. How many times have they written to the editor the I be silenced? You are in a minority as you wish for the debate. I am happy to oblige. This is what I say, what say you?

HERE IS MR. WEBER’S LETTER UNEDITED:

To the Editor,

Mr. Bazzo’s Everyman style is colorful theater: but his substantive message, such as it is, is nothing more than repackaged rightist cant. He invokes weary economic mantras-government is the source of all evil, regulation is choking the “unleashing” of entrepreneurial energy, the wise and invisible hand of the market-all in the service of the discredited notion of unrestrained capitalism. Please note Andy, that while it may not have been the sole contributor to the 2008 economic collapse, no serious observer discounts Mr. Bush’s ideologically driven deregulation as a major driver of that fiasco. Instead of leveling blunderbuss attacks on government, perhaps Mr. Bazzo can identify specifically which federal laws or agencies should be abolished or weakened. Child labor laws? The Federal Aviation Administration? The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation? The Securities and Exchange Commission? He may wish to live in a world of penniless 10-year-old chimney sweeps, uncharted air traffic, bank runs and predatory stock peddlers. I don’t.

On the social front, Mr. Bazzo lines up squarely behind those folks who, along with their reactionary ancestors, bitterly opposed the enactment of landmark progressive legislation, beginning with Social Security and continuing through Medicare, the Family Medical Leave Act, and now, the Affordable Care Act. During the debates on each of these forward-looking laws, Mr. Bazzo’s political soul mates predicted that their adoption would weaken our moral fiber and corrode cherished American values. In their fevered imaginings, they foresaw the very demise of Western civilization. Not surprisingly, these alarmist forecasts proved false. These laws are now part of the social fabric supported by the great majority of our citizens, who have judged that government has a legitimate role in assuring a modicum of economic security, particularly for the most vulnerable among us.

Now, Mr. Bazzo has concluded that the stupidity of socialist leaning voters is responsible for his party’s thumping in 2012. This smug conceit is consistent with his Tea Party colleagues’ self-righteous insistence that they alone possess truth, authentic patriotism and purity of thought about the meaning of our Constitution, guns, abortion, gay marriage, etc. Happily, as many journalists of all political stripes have pointed out, the demographic train has left the station for good. Young, educated and ethnically diverse voters overwhelmingly support the President and his policies, major themes (of which are tolerance), a public/private sector collaboration and smartening government. Angry, intolerant, old and predominantly Caucasian males don’t have a lock on this place anymore. Nor do climate change deniers, evolution rejecters and machine gun toters. The electorate has changed, permanently, and we are all better for it. In short, you lost the war of ideas and we won.

So Andy, get over it. Stop whining about the mindless proletariat and the manipulative Orwellian President who tricked people into voting for him. Instead of ceaseless finger pointing and lamentation, as you pilot your cab, you might more profitably devote your considerable energies to addressing the problem your own leaders have identified—that Republicans have become the party of ignorance. And when you start doing that, you will be celebrating one of the virtues you cherish mightily—accountability and individual responsibility. Remember that one? It’s the one you like to lecture about to poor people. It means being introspective and not blaming others for your woes.

The respective roles of the states and federal government and the relationship of individuals to both, along with taxes, limits on Constitutional rights, immigration and budget reduction, are all enduring subjects about which reasonable people can and do differ. They are the stuff of debate in our amazing political democracy—a democracy for which both conservative and yes Andy, liberal Americans have died to defend. And so Mr. Bazzo, crippled by stupidity, we will continue to debate these issues, secure in the knowledge that buggy whips are not required for entry into the conversation and that no mortal—not even you—is a truth monopolist.

Respectfully,

Cliff Weber

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s