Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Post-Dispatch columnist Eric Mink has an excellent column today on Governor Blunt's moral values when it comes to those who need the most help. I think Mink sums up the exasperation and outrage many in Missouri felt when Blunt proposed his Dickensian budget.

The amount of hutzpah it takes to campaign on the moral fiber of your being, and then turn around and kick those who need help the most right to the curb is incredible. In the past weeks I have heard numerous mild-mannered individuals describe the Governor's plan and anyone who supports it with language that would turn a sailors ears red. These are not folks who toss off an expletive lightly, but their level of outrage was so great that they couldn't help themselves.

To say that we must, on principle, freeze taxes, yet cut essential services to those that need them, shows little understanding of logic, principle or morality.

A couple choice graphs from Mink's column:
The governor and his fellow ideologues in Jefferson City (and, indeed, in Washington) have reduced us to arguing over which needy people deserve our help and which we have to cast aside. What we should be doing, instead, is challenging this twisted defeatism. The governor says, in essence, that we can't afford to be the kind of caring neighbors we want to be. He tells us we can't afford to have the kind of compassionate community that lives according to the moral values we prize.

Is this really what we've come to? Deciding how far below the poverty level you have to be before your state government will help you get health care? Twenty-five percent below isn't enough? You need to be 50 percent below, as the Legislature proposed last year, or 70 percent below, as Blunt now proposes?

In 2005, in the wealthiest nation ever to exist on Earth, this is a disgrace.
Go read the whole thing, it's excellent.

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