the hypocrisy of “dispassionate” budget cuts

promoted by Rosi

I randomly found something interesting. I stumbled onto a New York Times article about Xanadu, and here’s what our governor had to say about spending money to supplement billion-dollar projects three months ago:

With the Xanadu entertainment and shopping complex three years behind schedule and in need of an estimated $875 million to open, Gov. Chris Christie said Wednesday that it was time for the state to help resuscitate the project.

So using state money to save a private, unnecessary entertainment complex funded by billionaires is more important than supplementing federal funds already appropriated to add a lifeline to a failing train fleet?

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From yesterday’s Star-Ledger:

NJ Transit says its trains between Newark and New York’s Penn Station are running with 30- to 60-minute delays … Bassett Hackett said trains are being single-tracked between Newark and New York. She said the delays were likely to persist into the evening hours Wednesday.

I guess it’s more important to subsidize huge investment firms than to make sure people don’t get fired from their jobs when the trains make them miss work. (How come poor people are the only ones who pay dearly for their misfortunes?)

But, Xanadu does present opportunities to bring in spare change from the poorest sectors of society, courtesy of subsidies for financiers:

Mr. Christie endorsed a report issued Wednesday by a commission he appointed to come up with recommendations for bolstering the state’s troubled gambling and horse racing industries.

What’s with the double standard on drug addiction versus gambling addiction? If someone’s addicted to drugs, lock them up, but if someone’s addicted to slots, let’s “bolster” that habit and stuff the spoils in the piggy bank? It also doesn’t make sense as public policy to feed gambling addictions that, cliched as it is, cost society much more in the long run than to blame the addicts and pretend their addictions grew in a vacuum.

It’s fiscally and intellectually irresponsible to pretend the pure forces of subtraction, and not misplaced priorities, motivate which items in the budget are cut. When the governor has passed up investment after investment in the future of New Jersey, it’s clearly a lie to claim it’s dispassionate.

I’d love to see how Chris Christie would fare relying on public transportation for a week. It would be a lot harder for him to get to his beloved Xanadu. But then again, if he depended on public transportation in his daily life, he probably couldn’t afford to go there anyway.

Comments (4)

  1. William Weber (WjcW)

    the ‘poor’ are on those trains, the ones from Newark to Manhattan??!?

    I’ve got news for you…


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