Monday Mashup (6/14/10)

  • 1) The Bucks County Courier Times ran a Guest Opinion today from Rob “Self” Ciervo, running as a Repug against incumbent Dem Steve Santarsiero for the PA-31 State House seat (here).

    Among Ciervo’s supposedly innovative ideas is to cut the staffing of each state representative’s office (which I’m sure will do wonders for response to constituent requests) and cutting down the number of mailers allowed per state representative (Ciervo states that Santarsiero has sent out five over the prior year, but I honestly cannot recall that many – by the way, I’ll await word on how many campaign mailers have been sent from Repug PA House reps Frank Farry, Gene DiGirolamo and Paul Clymer during that time, as long as Ciervo has brought this up).

    Ciervo also states as follows…

    No state senator or representative should be allowed under any circumstance to hire an individual who was paid to perform political tasks for any campaign the two years prior to their appointment. This is one of the main problems with our legislature; Harrisburg politicians hire their campaign staff to be on the state payroll. Santarsiero did just this by hiring all three of his paid campaign staff from the 2008 campaign to the state payroll immediately after winning election. How will we know they will not continue to do political campaigning for him, perhaps unpaid, while they are supposed to be serving the residents of our area?

    That’s a pretty low, baseless attack against Steve’s staff, with no proof of any wrongdoing of course.

    Ciervo also says that any state employee under 50 should have his or her pension benefit “frozen and transferred into a 401(k) style defined contribution retirement account,” which makes me wonder what other industry or category of worker in existence has been subject to such a draconian measure (I realize we have a pension issue in this state, but the public employees have paid their fair share while the state has been neglectful in paying its matching amount, as noted here).

    And as noted in the prior linked post, Santarsiero voted in favor of a bill to amend payment of unfunded actuarial liability to PA pension plans (again, not that Ciervo would ever acknowledge that…curious that the Courier Times published this from Ciervo the day after they gave column space to that nitwit Simon Campbell for his monthly rant against the Pennsbury teachers union – their contract expires on the 30th, Simple Simon; are you gonna move “off the dime” and do the job you were elected to do, or goad them into a strike instead…dumb question, I know).

    This is all part and parcel for Ciervo, who accused Steve of voting against funding state colleges (here – not true), and who trivialized Steve’s efforts on behalf of PA residents working for the state of New Jersey who face the very real issue of forced relocation to keep their jobs (here).

    I can hardly wait for more bold ideas in Ciervo’s next Guest Opinion, such as placing a quota on the number of Post-Its, ballpoint pens and notepads allocated to each State House rep. And how about mandating that each member of our legislature hold up one or two fingers as appropriate for a “bio break,” Rob?

    (And by the way, to contact Steve, click here.)

  • Update 6/15/10: Gee, I wonder if Teabagger Rob will endorse Steve’s idea of a constitutional convention, one of the many worthy suggestions from Santarsiero’s Guest Opinion today (here)?

  • 2) Also, I give you J.D. Mullane of the Courier Times (here)…

    June 12, 1987. President Reagan delivered one of the great speeches of the Cold War era. Two years later, the hated wall came down, endng “the brutal division of a continent.” The columns behind him are real, by the way.

    I guess that last sentence is a dig at Obama and his acceptance speech at the Democratic Party Convention in 2008 (here).

    While Mullane is not factually incorrect for a change, his insinuation that The Sainted Ronnie R had one damn thing to do with the collapse of the former Soviet Union is laughable (yes, I know this is familiar territory, but J.D. is the one resurrecting this piece of mythology, not me).

    For, as Madeleine Albright, secretary of state to President Clinton, put it here, “attributing the end of the Cold War to Ronald Reagan is like attributing the sunrise to the rooster’s cackle.”

  • 3) And speaking of Repug presidents, Laura Ingraham over at Fix Noise took a short at Number 44 also with the specious claim that he was “fundraising off the Gulf spill” (here).

    She continues…

    Did President Bush ever raise money off of 9/11?

    I don’t know the answer to that question, but I do know that he used it in his campaign commercials when running for president in 2004, as noted here, with some relatives of the victims claiming that Former President Highest Disapproval Rating In Gallup Poll History was “exploiting the tragedy for political gain.”

    I guess John Kerry is too honorable of a man to do what I’m suggesting he should have done, but if I were his campaign manager in 2004, I would have run an ad showing 43 sitting dumbfounded in that Florida classroom next to film of the WTC, Pentagon and Shanksville, PA crash sites while the attacks were in progress, with the words, “it happened on his watch” onscreen, and absolutely nothing else.

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