Monday, August 8, 2011
Things aren’t always as they seem
I probably shouldn't be so judgmental but the Rick Perry "Day of Prayer" threw me for loop, so much that I started laughing. It went from being unconstitutional, a separation of church and state event, the usual battle between Christians and non-Christians and even took a little detour to Tripoli. The threads and blogs have a life of their own, but this one took the cake for now. I think that I made one comment to point out some of the controversial pastors and their views.
I didn't see anything wrong with the governor having his Day of Prayer even thou it excluded Muslims and homosexuals, and I didn't see anything wrong with posters pointing that out. The Houston Chronicle and the Victoria Advocate gave the event a front-page status, and I thought it was proper; since 30,000, people attended the event and its national prominence warranted front page status. It is my opinion that the governor had a political motive. I also think that wearing his religion on his sleeve will help him with the base in Iowa. He will get the evangelical vote over Michelle Bachmann, but that's not saying much. I think the independents want to hear his economic views not his religious ones. While I'm on Rick Perry, I wonder if his budget prowess will surface. According to an article from Sunday's Houston Chronicle written by Patricia Kilday Hart, the attendees to the prayer vigil, organized by the governor were treated to 12,000 tons of air conditioning. That's great, but many of our state's poor and elderly will not benefit as well because the republican legislators dipped into the $650 million fund set aside to help the poor elderly and disabled citizens, to balance the state budget. This was done to keep the “no tax pledge." The System Benefit Fund was created by Representative Sylvester Turner. The bill tacked a small monthly fee onto everyone's utility bills to provide aid to the needy. About 500,000, Texans receive this aid. The Public Utilities Commission reduced the percentage of assistance offered each consumer from 17% of a monthly bill to 10%. Using, accounting tricks like these, was how the governors balance their budget. There are times legislators will not give their employees a cost to living raise but instead will offer them a pension or benefit increases. When hard times hit, it's easy to convince the public that their excessive benefits are putting a strain on the state's budget. They won't tell you that the employees did not get their cost of living wage increases.
I find it utterly useless to argue with some posters that are stuck on stuff they hear on talk radio. I found it amusing that a poster thought 1400 millionaires who didn't pay any taxes was not so bad because it only represented 1% of the millionaires. If two millionaires didn't pay their taxes, it's a crying shame because he's the first one to point out welfare fraud. A blogger thought it was fitting that welfare recipients be drug tested. I think discretion should be used and not just hold their predicament to standards you wouldn't put on other human beings. The poor and the middle class don't have a lobby, but I can never understand how people one paycheck away from being on unemployment; can vilify those that aren't so fortunate.
I can never understand how someone can take a position of superiority just because they have a different opinion or ideology. I don't think being a liberal democrat automatically makes me dumber than the person I'm having a discussion with. I've often praised conservatives who have a different opinion. The other night I almost stood up and applauded with MSNBC's liberal host Lawrence O'Donnell and his staff as they stood up and applauded the actions of a conservative governor of New Jersey, Chris Christi. I have my differences with Governor Chris Christie, because I think, he's an egotistical bully but on this occasion, he was a leader. Christie called the critics of Sohail Mohammed, a lawyer who he appointed to a judgeship in New Jersey, "crazy" and "ignorant" and saying he was tired of hearing "crap" about Sharia law spreading in the United States."