Election Daze

Election day is finally here. We’ve finally reached the culmination of the months of yard signage, campaigners standing at stoplights waving, meaningless candidate debates, and people’s uninformed bitching on social media. That last one is my favorite. The GOP/Teabaggers/Faux News crowd has worked very hard over the last six and a half years to start a new trend: blaming the president for all the ills of society, people’s lives, the world, and the universe. The recession that started during Bush’s term – that’s Obama’s fault. The TARP bailout that a Republican Treasury secretary proposed, a firmly Republican controlled congress passed, and Dubya Bush signed – that’s Obama’s fault. The massive budget deficit and ballooning national debt, the vast majority of which was caused by Bush’s tax cuts for the incredibly wealthy and two illegal wars – Obama’s fault. That whole ISIS cluster fuck caused by the Iraq War? That’s Obama fault for being too much of a dove. US air strikes in Syria and Egypt? That’s Obama being too much of a hawk. Illegal aliens? Obama’s fault. Ebola? Obama’s fault. Even the recently plunging price of gas is Obama’s fault because low gas prices are hurting the oil industry!

This trend has spread like wildfire because it eliminates the need for people to think. There’s nothing the average American hates more than critical thinking… well, maybe physical exercise or going a day without fast food, but that’s about it. There’s no need to understand issues anymore. Research is unnecessary. Paying attention to current events is pointless. Remembering history is a waste of time. If there’s something you don’t like, be it something going on in the country, internationally, or in your personal life, blame the president. Never mind the 535 members of congress and nearly endless number of cabinet heads, regulatory directors, and that pesky Supreme Court. Just point your finger at Obama. It’s his fault.

Dan Malloy is CT’s Obama.

obama malloy

No, it’s not because Malloy is a communist, fascist, socialist, Muslim, Kenyan dictator hell-bent on destroying the wealthy, stealing everyone’s guns, and throwing them in a FEMA camp. It’s because he serves the same purpose for CT’s ignorant, uninformed masses incapable of critical thought that Obama serves for those same type of people nationally. Malloy is the whipping post for… everything. Just like Obama has been ignorantly slapped with the “worst president in the history of the US” title, Malloy has been hit with the “worst governor in the history of the state” title. Obviously, believing both of those claims would require a total disregard of history, but let’s not confuse people with the facts. What I do find odd though is that when New Britain’s new Republican mayor passes a massive tax increase (11%!!) in the name of making up budget deficits (while simultaneously giving the new Costco a massive tax break) no one bats an eye. In fact, she’s hailed for being responsible and not continuing to kick the can down the road. When Malloy does the same thing it’s because he’s anti-business and hell-bent on destroying CT. We had decades of can kickers at the state level also and everyone expects those chickens to never come home to roost for CT? Oh, but Foley, the guy with no detailed plans and no realistic ideas, is going to lower my taxes!! Sure he is. Remember when Rowland swore he’d eliminate the income tax if only you’d elect him instead of one of those evil tax and spend Democrats? Oh, you forgot about that? Big surprise. Well it’s a good thing he was elected multiple times and eliminated that income tax for us… oh wait. In fact, Rowland was the biggest can kicker of them all. Telling us right up until then end, oh don’t worry, we’re fine. Chances are good that you also forgot when Weicker campaigned on lower taxes, strengthening education, and reasonable negotiations with state unions – then instituted the income tax, decimated education, and beat the unions nearly to death. Then there’s that time Rell swore there’d be no new taxes and kicked that can down the road as far as she could… right up until she realized she had no choice and raised them anyway. The bottom line is that the bills have to be paid. Claiming tax decreases during a campaign is easy and the oldest, most mindless campaign slogan in the book. Actually finding the money to give those tax decreases once you get elected is hard. Finding enough long-term, realistic budget cuts to keep those tax decreases sustainable… is so difficult it isn’t even something anyone tries to do. No-plan-for-anything-Foley won’t be any different. We’ll get some hack and slash on state employees and education to allow for a reduced tax burden on the wealthy while the middle-class is left high and dry – standard operating procedure for the GOP. Then it’ll be up to another Malloy or Weicker down the road to reconcile the mess. But muh taxez!!!

Look no further for the disingenuous nature of Foley’s proposed tax plans than his proposed slashing of the car tax. He’s obviously counting on the continued ignorance and memory loss of CT voters (which, I’ll admit, is a very safe bet), because Malloy already tried to do this. He even wrote this very lengthy letter to town governments explaining his logic in great detail. Nevertheless, he was blasted by town governments for trying to eliminate their easy money. How many complaints have I seen on Facebook directed at these town leaders for blocking what would have been a very beneficial tax reduction for all us common folk? How many people have lashed out at these obviously communist, fascist, Muslim, Kenyan, evil, greedy, mayors that are destroying CT? Zero. How many people have I seen mistakenly and ignorantly blaming Malloy for their high car taxes? Lots. Not surprisingly, Foley’s “plan” is simply a mill rate cap, which means even the broke-ass people driving around in 1985 Civics are still getting taxed on those death traps and the doctors with Ferraris registered at their west-end of Hartford homes get an utterly massive tax break on them. Malloy’s far superior plan completely eliminates the tax for those with cars valued under ~$28k, which keeps it in place for all the ballers that can easily afford it. Let’s make sure we ignore all that though. Foley 2014! Ma taxez!!!

But ma gunz!!! Malloy tried to take ma gunz!!!  Just like with the national government, people have forgotten that it’s Connecticut’s House and Senate that make the laws they don’t like and pass the budgets they don’t like. ALL focus is on the race for governor, and it’s not logical. SB1160 passed with overwhelming support from both the House and Senate. Malloy didn’t write or propose the bill, Sen. Williams and Rep. Sharkey did. Do you know how many Facebook rants I’ve seen about them?  None. Remembering the names of all those House and Senate members isn’t easy (but memorizing the life history of every player on the Red Sox or ____ [insert favorite sports team] somehow is), so let’s just point fingers at Malloy instead.

I certainly have plenty of disagreements with Malloy and he’s far from Connecticut’s savior. I’m not even saying you should vote for him. All I’m asking is that people think before they point fingers. Make sure that CT’s Obama-like whipping boy is actually at fault for what you’re blaming him for. Don’t take the easy and ignorant way out by blaming whatever figurehead is in office for all the ills of your life. Direct the majority of blame where it’s due: Connecticut’s corrupt/greedy city leaders and our suck-ass congress, most of whom have been in their seats for far too long. Also, give credit where credit is due. No governor or president can perform magic like people expect them to. At least Malloy is out there proposing ideas and solutions that actually work within the confines of reality and the political process, not playing the election year game of promising major tax cuts he’ll never be able to make good on. That shred of genuine and honest behavior counts for more than a bunch of hollow promises.

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