Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Breaking news for those who supported Democrats in the November 7 election. You're not getting what you voted for. Entering office with a "mandate" from the citizens, Democratic politicians are already throwing their supporters' pet projects overboard. Remember the issue of eliminating portable classrooms? And the save-our-election plan put forward by the 2006 County Council and Dr. Weast that would supposedly phase out those dangerous trailers? Not going to happen, according to County Executive Ike Leggett.

How about this one: the "Geographic Index" for the Thornton Plan? Gone, says incoming Governor-elect Martin O'Malley. That was the most talked about promise of every Democratic candidate in Montgomery County. Every reporter asked me about that in every campaign interview. Every endorsement questionnaire asked my position on it. Now, the Geographic Index is a new spending mandate at a time when the budget is going to be tighter. And it funnels money from Montgomery and other counties to irresponsibly run schools in Baltimore without reforming the operation of those schools. But Democrats and a fair number of independents voted for it, and it's surprising to find out that Democratic officials are going back on their promise.

Compounding this news in recent days was a surprising attack by new Democratic Council Member Marc Elrich on what could be described as a sacred cow in Southwest Montgomery County: the BCC Rescue Squad. Yes, you heard that right: a politician attacking the BCC Rescue Squad in the Washington Post. And apparently hell has not frozen over. The Rescue Squad happens to be one of the most respected and valuable institutions in our community, and is primarily funded by donations. Mr. Elrich says it should stop its long-established service to NW Washington, or also serve the entire Montgomery and D.C. area. Now, if I was having a heart attack in Clarksburg or SE Washington, why would I call an ambulance headquartered in Bethesda? I'm still waiting for public reaction to Mr. Elrich's broadside against the BCC squad and it will be interesting to hear.

Trivia question: If Cuba's lauded healthcare system is so outstanding, why does Fidel Castro need a doctor from Spain?

Washington Post embarrassment of the day: Massive headline in Metro claims O'Malley to offer millions for schools. Inside, near the end of the article, it admits that O'Malley has dropped the centerpiece of the school funding plan: the Geographic Index. The Post continues to provide the poor journalism and party organ functions we know and expect.

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