Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Real Consequences of Libertarian, Anti-Tax ,Small Government Policies

Consequence #1:

Repo man seizes city streetlights

A Michigan city couldn't pay $4 million in past-due bills, so the power company took out most of the streetlight poles to settle the debt. 


This is not from "The Onion." This is a real thing happening to a real town in America.

  DTE spokesman Len Singer said the utility began removing light poles in August rather than just cutting off the power, to avoid lawsuits and confusion. The utility is under no obligation to power communities that don’t pay their bills but wanted to maintain some service, he said.

There are concerns about safety in areas where new streetlights aren’t being put up.
“After they took the streetlight from in front of my business, someone climbed onto my roof and stole an air-conditioning unit,” said Bobby Hargrove, owner of Hargrove Machinery Sales.

 But that's nothing. If you want to see an even worse consequence of 30 years of anti-government, anti-tax, free-market voodoo economics, just look at Topeka:

Consequence # 2:

Domestic violence law repealed in Topeka, Ks., to save money

TOPEKA — The Topeka City Council on Tuesday voted to repeal the city’s law against misdemeanor domestic battery, the latest in a budget battle that has freed about 30 abuse suspects from charges.

That's right. Topeka, Kansas is sending wife-beaters home to their wives because they can't afford to prosecute them. Or, to be more accurate, Topeka has decided that it is better to let women and children be brutalized in their own homes than to raise, say, the sales tax a smidge, or increase property taxes a bit. And to add insult to injury, they aren't just suspending prosecutions until such time as the economy improves or whatever, they actually MADE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE LEGAL! That's your good old Heartland family values in action! 
Also, how is it possible that there is such a thing as "misdemeanor domestic battery? 

That is so horrific, that it almost makes the everyday cuts of public employees seem benign.
Consequence # 3:

672 School Jobs Are Lost in Largest Single-Agency Layoff Under Bloomberg


In a statement, the schools chancellor, Dennis M. Walcott, said the union representing the workers, District Council 37, had squandered its chances to make a deal of its own last spring by rejecting a plan to give the city access to its health care fund to balance its books. 

Yeah, what the hell were you thinking, not allowing the city to loot your health care fund to balance its budget? All you do is educate the city's children, why should you have access to medical care? 


District Council 37 made three proposals to the city that included giving up paid holidays and reducing the maximum number of hours school aides were allowed to work as ways to save money. The city rejected all of them. 

Way to bargain in good faith, there Bloomberg! What happened to New York? How did New York become the city that keeps electing wealthy Republicans to the mayoralty?  Well, this is what you get, New York! Do you think Ed Koch would have let this happen?


But hey, it's just school employees. It's not like the Milton Friedman / Ayn Rand bullshit is causing a threat to public safety or anything.

Consequence # 4:

Florida Police Officers Fear Impending Layoffs

Miami-Dade Police officer Reasha Thomas, who hoped to spend her entire law enforcement career in her hometown, is now one of 90 dreading a possible layoff next week.
Thomas learned on the news about the 90 layoffs possible next week if the police union does not give in to the salary cuts Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez says he needs to balance the budget.
You know, this is what happens when you let the looney right-wing nuts be in charge of the government. There's always money to bail out Wall Street, there's always money to start wars that funnel taxpayer dollars into the coffers of well-connected corporations, but police officers? That's a luxury we just can't afford.