Wednesday, November 09, 2005

AFTER THE ELECTION, THE BLAME

In Dover, Penn., all eight members of the school board were swept out of office. The old board supported the introduction of "intelligent design" into science class. The replacements did not. Warmed-over creationism does not fly at the ballot box.

In California, Gov, Arnold Schwarzenegger tried to mess with teacher tenure and political activity by unions. He got his head handed to him. Or, to quote Linda Hamilton, "You're terminated, motherf--ker."

But the nazel-gazing isn't as easy in Greene County, Mo., where a quarter-cent sales tax flamed out. We still hold to our Tuesday night instant assessment -- linking a law tax with childhood development programs was a bad idea -- but we're fascinated by the Wednesday morning fingerpointing.

Darrell Moore, the Greene County prosecutor (and a Republican) blamed talk radio and its "negative" braying for the defeat. Moore told KSMU:
"I am angry at some of the people on the radio talk shows who ... feed this idea that this proposal was government trying to raise children. [That] offends me.

"For people to say it was the government trying to raise children is a lie, and it's outrageous."
Oddly, Moore does not give the newspaper any credit for vigorously supporting the tax.

One more thing about the right-wing zing. If Darrell Moore and other elected officials are serious about condemning the influence of KSGF, then they should quit patronizing the station. They should refuse all future requests to guest on KSGF's morning show. If Moore & Co. believe the talk-radio monster contributed to the CSI tax defeat, then quit feeding the monster. Ignore it and let it starve.

Other city and county officials, meanwhile, are moaning about the defeat and predicting dire consequences. A new crime lab might -- horrors! -- be located in Joplin. City police won't get an automated records system. But then there's Roseann Bentley, a county commissioner, minimizing the tax defeat in Wednesday's News-Leader:
Bentley, who also chairs the Mayor's Commission for Children, said early childhood education efforts won't be deterred by the tax proposal's failure.

"We obviously won't have an early childhood resource center, but we'll continue to work on school readiness and bringing awareness to this topic," said Bentley.
Maybe next time, city and county leaders will keep in mind that successful politics is about what's possible.

5 comments:

A.McSholty said...

"In Dover, Penn., all eight members of the school board were swept out of office. The old board supported the introduction of "intelligent design" into science class. The replacements did not. Warmed-over creationism does not fly at the ballot box."

Except, of course, in Kansas where they're also bringing back bleeding as a medical practice.

Anonymous said...

Another thing to keep in mind: The right-wing has done an excellent job of turning "tax" into a 4-letter word. I don't think this thing would have passed even without the attached social program. Read those con statements the N-L published on page 4. Most are anti-tax and separate policy from cost.

a. cline

Anonymous said...

You said it brother - Quit feeding the monster. While I have a hard time believing VDJ has that much influence on people (I think ratings would back me up on that), I agree the best way to get rid of that problem is to ignore it.

Jericho tried not to gloat this morning but had a hard time keeping his joy concealed. His callers weren't much better.

His next great cause is this audit of the city. While every governmental body could use a little snooping every now and then, I think the premise is fundamentally flawed. Most of the time these audits reveal accounting quirks, bidding, etc. -- it makes no judgment of the priority of spending for a body.

As for this notion of a lack of confidence in our government, I would believe it if we kept changing horses.. but when city council and school board elections go un-contested and you keep sending Bond and Blunt back to Washington, you shouldn't expect different results.

Ron Davis said...

Andy: The anti-tax crowd played a role in Tuesday's defeat, albeit a less-important one that most might imagine. Voters in Branson, Taney County and Webster County approved tax increases on Tuesday -- and those counties tend to be more anti-tax than Greene County.

Anon, about the audit being pushed by KSGF: Perhaps the morning guy and his sycophants might start by actually attending some city council and county commission meetings. They might think about calling the city and requesting copies of the city's budgets and internal audits.

They might wish to actually do some recon and research before spouting off and demanding an audit for which everyone will have to pay. Unless VDJ and KSGF are willing to finance the audit that no one else is demanding.

busplunge said...

I had lunch with some friends today and our discussion was about this subject. I made the comment that nothing is going to change in the burg unless something really scandalous happens to shake people out of the doldrums.
But as long as we are against choice and two men kissing nothing will change.
Everything is interrelated,and the same people are one all the boards.
I am not anti tax and I voted against it, because there was no clear plan. And I am not comfortable with that.
A real solution is not more taxes, but a living wage, affordable health care, universal access to affordable higher education and on site daycares.
Of course I also believe that a major deterant to unwanted pregnacy is free cable tv.
krxshyd fer cryin out loud