Plain Talk

Plain Talk

Posted: Wednesday, March 16, 2011 8:02 pm
By: Nicolle Gallagher, Guest Columnist

Why is Congressman Fincher begging the Obama administration for stimulus funds? 

Well it certainly isn’t to ensure that West Tennessee has an adequate search and rescue plan in place should the New Madrid fault ever  rumble again. 

No. Instead he’s begging Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood to fund the Cates Landing Port project in Lake County, begging for $13 million. That’s a pretty big hand-out for the candidate who swore to “plow congress” and cut spending. 

Congressman Tanner and his staff worked diligently on that project for over a decade and without so much as even bothering to check if the new GOP budget would jeopardize it. 

Mr. Fincher went ahead and cast his vote for the budget.

I guess the two separate $1,000 per plate fundraiser parties scheduled this month on Fincher’s behalf were more important than buckling down and crunching some numbers to see exactly how this budget would affect his constituents.

Even today if you call Congressman Fincher’s office, not one person there can give you an assessment of what the GOP budget means to Weakley County.  

Should we start calling the TN Republican Party directly to see if they have answers? Because no one at Fincher’s offices seem to. 

Hopefully, the grant will be approved and funded, but as usual, we don’t know. 

The uncertainty that Republicans continuously gripe about as a burden for corporations doesn’t seem to concern them too much when it’s just regular working people who are wondering if good jobs are actually coming to Lake County or not.

In fact, it doesn’t seem that Republicans, all of them, even the voters – are even the least bit concerned about the safety of Americans either. 

They haven’t created jobs. They are attacking teachers in just about every state. They are cutting funding to projects that would create jobs. 

They are hiding how money is being distributed through the TNInvest program and just to make sure we are all aware of exactly where we, the people, stand in order of priorities. They are also cutting funding to NOAA and The National Geological Survey – yes, the folks who study tornadoes and earthquakes. 

And, get this, the budget would cut funding for the Tsunami warning system in Hawaii and along the west coast. 

An interesting side note. The warning system was originally created and funded via an earmark – because sometimes representatives do actually focus on the needs of their district. 

Now if you claim to care about jobs as much as you say you do Mr. Fincher, can you explain to the readers why you would vote to cut jobs that have to be done in America? 

If I drive through a McDonalds, there’s a good chance that the person taking my order is actually off-shore, but it’s pretty unlikely that we can outsource studying our own geology. That is one of the few jobs that must still be done in the United States. 

And why cut funding that would promote businesses to set up shop? 

What company is going to want to invest in area that doesn’t even have a weather emergency warning system or a comprehensive search and rescue plan?

Yes, they are even cutting the funding needed to coordinate the routine earthquake preparedness tests done all along the West Coast every year. 

But my gravest concern about Mr. Fincher. You didn’t even bother to find out how this budget would affect your constituents. Aren’t you supposed to be our representative? 

Please, do not forget, this is only weeks after they held the unemployed hostage and refused to make billionaires pay their fair share. Instead They decided to close their budget deficit on the backs of working people. 

I want to focus on solutions and discuss ideas. 

I want to build bridges and find common ground between the two parties but I’m angry and Mr. Fincher, you sure have made things worse.  

The only good news is, that from reading letters to the editor from across the country and state, a lot of people are just as fed up as me.

Send me your comments by email to nicolle.crist@gmail.com.

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