Abuse of Power
January 18, 2014 § Leave a comment
This morning I watched Steve Kornacki present a meticulously detailed indictment of Chris Christy’s attempt to blackmail the Mayor of Hoboken. It was like watching the harpooning of a whale. He picked up the harpoon, hefted it for balance, reared back and launched it straight at Christy, where it landed with a satisfying and penetrating thud.
I enjoyed the performance, of course. But awhile later I began to reflect on the rather disturbing comparison of the outrage over the withholding of Sandy money from Hoboken, along with the willful traffic jam at Fort Lee, with Rick Perry’s rejection of ten billion dollars available over a period of ten years to finance medical care for 1.5 million Texans.
What’s the difference? Can anyone doubt the obvious political motive behind Perry’s decision? If he were to hold an hour and a half press conference and attempt to deny a raw political motive behind his decision, wouldn’t he be laughed out of the room? It would replace his “Oops” debacle as a viral YouTube favorite.
In New Jersey, well known for its mobster culture and public office as a conduit to the penitentiary, they are talking about U.S. Attorney’s investigation of Christy. In Texas, everyone seems to accept Perry’s decision as business as usual, no big deal. I understand that the GOP’s faithful five on the Supreme Court issued an invitation to him and the other heartless governors who have joined him in this endeavor to deny doctors to sick children and others. I suppose that means that he is not breaking the law. But doesn’t it seem strange to anyone that withholding money from Hoboken New Jersey that the city needs to shore up its protection from another giant storm is regarded with outrage and proper subject for criminal investigations; but leaving 1.6 million Texans without a doctor elicits little more than “Tsk Tsk!” “Too bad, but Texas is a conservative state.”
Guess not. Nothing is going to happen until 100,000 of those victims and their supporters show up on a regular basis at the Governor’s mansion in Austin. And I don’t see any evidence that that is likely to happen.