Loco logic at work
Commentary by PAT MURPHY
Never underestimate the Idaho Legislatureís uncanny
capacity to outdo itself with yet a new madcap idea.
Priding itself as "the nationís most Republican
Legislature," this body established a new high in political
After deciding to shell out $64 million more or less to
restore and repair the aging state Capitol, legislators then continued to
defy a court order to adequately fund repairs for aging, rundown public
schools, and instead sarcastically dribbled out repair funds.
If that seems odd, catch the Legislatureís loco logic in
another maneuver involving the public purse.
After appropriating several hundred million dollars of
state funds to match other hundreds of millions of federal dollars for
state social programs, Republican legislators inserted a not-so-fast
Agencies helping needy children, the mentally ill, victims
of domestic violence, the deaf and hard of hearing, and others are
instructed not to spread the word of their services.
By trying to keep Idahoís social programs a secret,
Republican legislators hope not so many of the needy will show up for help
ĺ thus saving Idaho money on programs set up by the Legislature to help
But why stop the craziness there?
Skinflint Republicans could instruct all state agencies to
de-list their telephone numbers in the next edition of the phone book.
Ditto for legislative phone numbers where constituents call for help.
Phone calls unquestionably would plummet.
In time, the Legislature could shrink the number of
agencies offering assistance to taxpayers. And then lawmakers could rent
empty state offices to lobbyists to improve state revenues.
President Bush II has chosen a smart strategy for dealing
with his mangling of the English language: heís poking fun at his clumsy
He wisecracked the other day that some folks suspect Yogi
("It ainít over `til itís over") Berra is his speechwriter.
For this, millions of future young men should be grateful.
When parents complain that their male offspring are
sliding through college on weak grades (as Bush did), partying like
college frat boys into their 30s (as Bush did), and speaking without
polish (as Bush does), the boys will have a response:
"Chill it, folks. This is how George Bush prepared to
be President of the United States."
Over the past several months, tens of thousands of U.S.
workers have lost jobs after corporate CEOs decided that pink-slipping
employees would improve company profits.
Now, hereís some news that should make jobless workers
wonder about motives of ex-employers.
According to the New York executive compensation
consulting firm of Pearl Meyer & Partners, CEOs of the nationís top
200 corporations received an average ĺ repeat, average ó compensation
of $10.89 million last year, a 16 percent increase over 1999.
So despite falling stock values and lower profits,
business is plenty good if youíre the CEO of even a company thatís in
bad shape financially and laying off other employees.