Sunday, March 06, 2005

Sunday's Letters

The Indy Star featured two letters from Libertarians- from me and from Chris Ward. Here's Chris':
I am sincerely dismayed at the actions of the House Democrats this week. Sacrificing the people's business to counter what they perceive as a Republican "power grab" was narrow-minded and extremely arrogant.

Wasting two days of the General Assembly cost Hoosier taxpayers thousands of dollars. Democrats should be ashamed of their fiscal irresponsibility. First, they ran up the deficit the state currently has, now they want to waste even more of the taxpayers' money by not even showing up to work?

In 2006, I hope that citizens remember what happened this week. If you want true bipartisanship and officials who care about your individual needs, vote Libertarian.

Christopher D. Ward
5th District Representative, Libertarian Party of Indiana
New Palestine

I can't say what Chris originally wrote, but my letter was slimmed down a little bit. Here's what the Star printed:
Michele McNeil's article on lobbyist activity was enlightening. It is important to track the various interests that try to influence legislation.

So, it was of great interest to see that the city of Indianapolis was listed as one of the top 10 lobbyists, ranking ahead of AT&T, the Indiana Trial Lawyers Association and Trump Casinos.

I expect gambling interests to spend big money to influence legislation. While the ethics of lobbying and its effects are subject to debate, nobody can question the fact that it's their money to spend. In the case of the city's lobbying efforts, tax dollars are being spent.

This is a moral outrage and an indictment on the priorities set by the mayor. Given the chance, the people would never vote to have tax dollars spent on lobbying.

Tax dollars should be used for funding safety, sewers that work and other proper functions of government.

Mike Kole
Secretary, Libertarian Party of Indiana

Edits occurred in the original's final two paragraphs, with portions chopped out highlighted in bold, as shown below:
This is a moral outrage, and an indictment on the priorities set by the Mayor. Given the chance, the people would never vote to have tax dollars spent on lobbying. The Mayor struggled for months to find the money for the Police, but could squander six figures on lobbying for a stadium.

If the Mayor wants to secure his legacy with the help of the legislature, he should spend his own money. Tax dollars should be used for funding safety forces, sewers that work, and other proper functions of government.

I was pretty keen on reminding people that the Mayor played hardball with the Police, claiming there was no money. If there is no money for police, a very proper governmental function, how is there money for a frivolity such as lobbying? I was also very interested in making an overture towards the possible motivation for this spending, and to name the moral outrage. Trump spent his own money on lobbying, so I won't be taking him to task. The Mayor spent the people's money! While I might raise an eyebrow at the Mayor if he spent his own money, I wouldn't be able to cite it as a moral outrage. It would be his money down the hole, and his money is his to blow.

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