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Sanity Zone 1- 24 - 2014 Just Plain Mean

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Posted 01-23-2014 at 01:58 PM by xan

It would be deficient not to have an opinion on what, to the rest of the country, seems to be a nothing event from a consensus all-star corrupt state government. Maybe it makes no difference, and maybe it becomes a transformative. But it won't be transformative unless we become way more self-reflective. The whole focus of why the Christie Administration implemented a pointless, vindictive and despicably mean program of jamming access to the most heavily trafficked bridge in the world misses the bigger picture. The more troubling issue is that the ease in which this program was conceived, designed and implemented shows that abuse of its constituents is this administration's primary philosophy of governing.

It is obvious that this episode was one of countless similar programs by this cabal. It's likely that the only reason why they got busted is because, in this instance, they missed their target. From the records one can see the sophistication and motivation of the team. The project was neither sloppy nor haphazard and had the added impression of seamless coordination. The clear note of "target acquired, fire" reverberates without internal discussion of morality or consequence. The Christie administration views governance as assaulting any interests which are not aligned with the administration's. Even from the self-promoted videos, discussion or objection is squelched, not with logic and/or persuasion, but with derision and threats. Undermining the authority of elected officials and creating a public hazard appear to be the regular bodily function of this bloated beast.

Some might praise him for being a strong leader. "Winners make the rules" and other such nonsense. If you're elected an executive, you govern all the people, not just the ones you agree with. There is no excusable ethic that justifies much of the policy initiatives of this administration. Countless examples of negotiation in bad faith, dirty tricks, misappropriation of funds, and violation of civil rights accrue like floaters in a sewage basin. His "bipartisan support" looks like splatter in Tony Soprano's trunk.

"Hey, I'm just telling it like it is" is more, "I'm just telling you a limited version of where I wish I could tell you where to go." Its a shame we didn't have this information before the election. We already have enough trouble with elected executives flouting law and ethics, we really should stop rewarding them.
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  1. Old Comment
    Utah_Saint's Avatar
    Do you feel this is a different kind of preferential politics than the IRS targeting of specific political groups?
    Posted 01-24-2014 at 07:38 AM by Utah_Saint Utah_Saint is offline

  2. Old Comment
    xan's Avatar
    I think there are a couple of key differences between the Christie Bridge and the IRS 501c4 scandals.
    • The Christie top staff conceived and initiated the bridge program without authority or notice.
    • The Congress gave the authority to the IRS to make determinations, and the actions taken were conceived and initiated by an admitted "conservative Republican" the Cincinnati field office.
    • The CB initiative was political retribution for not supporting the "bipartisan governor"
    • The IRS initiative was a "shortcut" to determine if applicants were trying to gain undeserved tax exempt status as Congress cut the budget for the staff performing this work. Evidence suggests that conservative, liberal and progressive identified political applicants were given extra scrutiny, though anti-tax, Israel, and Occupy applications got more frequent scrutiny.
    • The result of the CB initiative created a dangerous public hazard and cost millions in wasted time and money and energy.
    • The applicants for the 501c4 status were allowed by law to proceed doing business as if they had achieved their exempt status during the review process. Only one applicant was denied. No firm suffered damages, only few endured increased scrutiny.

    I guess I'd have to ask this question:
    If forced to chose which violation you'd want, do you want to have the government indiscriminately block your access to hospitals, bridges and commerce because you didn't vote for them or do you want more scrutiny on people who don't want to pay taxes?

    As a personal editorial, I would like greater scrutiny on tax exempt companies. The potential for abuse, especially with the 501c4 "donor undisclosed" feature, is the primary reason the IRS got in trouble in the first place. Congress has to fix the tax laws and also appoint somebody other than the IRS to make the determination as to who should or shouldn't be granted tax-exempt status.

    As a further note, my organization applied in August of 2012 for 501c3 Tax exempt status to conduct basic immune system research. We have yet to receive our assignment. We are not disadvantaged by this at all.
    Posted 01-24-2014 at 03:18 PM by xan xan is offline
  3. Old Comment
    TheOak's Avatar
    This entire Nation has failed itself in respect to accountability. Even in the case of Christie, someone took the fall but it was not the top of the food chain. The double standard between the private sector and politicians is bathed in hypocrisy.

    When foul play was found at Enron, Skilling was held accountable. When foul play was found in Christies administration a lamb was sacrificed. The higher up you go in the political food chain the less accountability is held as evident by no one being held accountable for the IRS/Tea Party scandal, Benghazi, etc...
    Posted 01-27-2014 at 08:03 AM by TheOak TheOak is offline
  4. Old Comment
    xan's Avatar
    Oak, you're on the money here. In his 2 hour press conference, Christie noted that he "wasn't a micromanager," but the cameras didn't show the snickering of any of the aids or legislators or lobbyists in attendance. His reputation is that of a supreme interventionist. That his chubby hands weren't involved in this is virtually inconceivable, but as a former prosecuter, understandable that he didn't document his involvement so he could have "plausible deny-ability."

    It should be noted that several top people did lose their jobs at the IRS, but not for "Benghazi" (in brackets here because there were 30 other attacks on embassies and other US installations that same day, so picking out one and not the others gives the administration problems - where's the diligence on those?)

    As for Enron, far more people than Skilling were responsible for that mess, but they got away. It was rife with corruption at many levels. Its a shame that it took almost 2 years and $40 million to just get that one guy. Makes you wonder why they go after any white collar guy at all, especially in Texas, where flouting the federal law appears to be a cause for celebration.
    Posted 01-27-2014 at 12:55 PM by xan xan is offline
  5. Old Comment
    TheOak's Avatar
    I will go beyond all that has and hasn't been said by Christie or about Christie.
    Christie is the Governor of New Jersey, he was born in Newark, NJ. and presently lives in NJ... Thats a home town guy that should know every nook and cranny, the traffic issue was around 8 miles from where he grew up, 30 miles from where he presently lives.... so he is intimately familiar with the area and its traffic.

    As huge of an ordeal it was lasting three days... Christie never asked WTF is going on? Not once did he try to figure out if there was a way to expedite what ever it was that was going on so that it had minimal impact on emergency vehicles and school buses? Did he just figure it was a convenient mishap?

    Plausible deniability was created and is being maintained so just like CEOs, and all the higher tier politicians surrounding Corporations and Governmental agencies where wrong doing is going on... He either knew and should be personally held accountable or he didn't know and should be removed from office for being inept.

    For the second paragraph in your reply I will leave you with a quote ~ "What does it matter"?
    Posted 01-27-2014 at 01:21 PM by TheOak TheOak is offline
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