Tuesday, April 12, 2011

GA Republicans Can't Escape Their Ingrained Trend Toward Failure

The disastrous Georgia legislative session is almost at an end. Since the GOP took over the state in 2000, Georgia has been on a downhill slide as Republicans began to methodically take apart all that had been built. Typically, they began to chip away at the public school system and environmental laws and regulations. They appointed inexperienced people to lead government departments, about which they knew nothing. Having suddenly become the lead party in a one party state, they were all hugs and kisses as they celebrated their new found power.

It has taken them eight years to remember how capable they are of shooting themselves in the proverbial foot. For years they stood on the brink of winning the governor's office, but they could never get past the inevitable self destruction. This past election seemed to have been their shining moment. They managed to win more seats in both houses of the legislature. They added more constitutional offices to their booty as a Republican Attorney General, Labor Commissioner, and Insurance Commissioner assumed office.

Given the fact that this past election was a typical southern reaction to an African-American President the GOP was also able to put a large number of known ne'er do wells in office. The new Governor was named one of the 15 most corrupt members of Congress in early 2010 by a non-partisan watchdog group. Before charges could be brought, he resigned to run for Governor. The Lt. Governor, already known to be infinitely corrupt, was re-elected, and his fellow Republicans immediately stripped him of his powers over the state Senate. The Speaker of the House, having replaced a man who resigned in disgrace, took a lobbyist paid trip to Germany with his family over the Thanksgiving holiday. The list goes on and on, but I don't have time nor space to dedicate to such embarrassment.

The two big accomplishments of the legislative session were to have been immigration and tax "reform." The tax "reform" drawn up by a tax reform commission, appointed by the previous governor, turned out to be anything but reform. With little study and thought by the legislators a terribly regressive bill hit the floor, which placed high taxes on services heretofore untaxed, removed mortgage interest deductions from income taxes, cut income taxes a small amount and increased the state deficit by over 400 million dollars. It was well on its way to passage, herded quickly along by legislative leaders. Suddenly an Ivy League educated economist legislator in the Democratic Party put a monkey wrench in their plans by showing how badly the bill would hurt the middle class and cut taxes on the upper class and corporations. Typical Republican voodoo economics. Needless to say, the bill died last week after two weeks of heavy emails and letters to legislators from "we the people." The GOP, today, blamed the Georgia State University's nationally known economics department for the failure of the bill. As usual, it will not acknowledge that its incompetence and poor economic policies are to blame.

The other shining accomplishment was to be an "Arizona styled" immigration "reform" bill, meant to drive immigrants, illegal or otherwise, from the state with the usual racial profiling. The fact that the Arizona bill has been held up by federal judges and is probably unconstitutional did not deter these zealots from their appointed goals. Bravely they strode forward ready to take federal responsibilities as their own and save Georgia from the feared immigrants. Wait, enter, stage left, the business and farming communities. They have hit the legislature with the cold, hard facts that their businesses will either fail or lose millions due to the "reform" bill. At this point, in the waning days of the session, the bill teeters on the brink of failure.

Finally, a couple of weeks ago a prominent GA State Senator and Democrat, introduced legislation to restore the Lt. Governor's powers, a move aimed at stirring the rivalries between the Lt. Governor and his enemies. It produced much confusion right in the middle of the tax "reform" debate. This past week a 55 year old female GOP activist began sending emails to GOP legislators that were very critical of the Lt. Governor and his supporters. They engaged an Internet specialist, who discovered that the activist and the GOP Senate Majority Whip shared the same IP address. A number of searches turned up nothing under the name of the person, who had said she was leaving the state to take care of her sick mother. Apparently, the Majority Whip is either a cross dresser or has been posing as a female activist on line.

Tune in again soon, dear readers to follow the continuing saga of a group of children, posing as a political party. Can it get any more bizarre? Oh yes. Yes it can, and it will. Sadly the people of GA will pay and pay dearly because there is little chance in the current political climate that the voters of GA will elect honest, law abiding citizens of reasonable intelligence to political office. That option was there in the recent election and it was turned aside.

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