Political Quick Hits: Wild Animals, Melanomas and St. Peter Edition

Kabuki Theater

Kirsten Brown

Ms. Kirsten Brown, Libby, from her public Facebook page. Ms. Brown testified that she would like to be able to scan Facebook to try to “prove” that information from multiple official verified income data sources is wrong, and that Montanans in need are lying about their need and eligibility for safety net programs.

It seems that the people TEA Party representatives Tom Burnett, Ron Ehli and Art Wittich subpoenaed to rail against medicaid expansion and other help for Montanans in need have been caught using an analogy which references the people they were paid to help as “wild animals” and liars.  This is shameful and repulsive.  As Intelligent Discontent writes, given this email has come to light “presumably [Wittich, Ehli, Burnett and crew] were aware of her attitude and lack of evidence—and they chose to present this farce to the people of Montana in order to gin up a controversy about fraud in public assistance programs.”

At the “hearings” in which Ms. Brown and a couple of other Libby public assistance workers were brought in to denigrate Montana’s most vulnerable citizens, no members of the public were allowed to speak, nor was any requirement made that these individuals verify any of the claims they made.  The “hearings” spectacle did serve one purpose: it exposed the motives and true beliefs of Wittich, Ehli and Burnett.


Gaffe of the Week

This week, John Fitzpatrick, chief lobbyist for NorthWestern Energy this week called net metering of renewable energy ”

As the Billings Gazette reported, a net metering device allows customers to sell back to utility companies any power generated by the renewable energy systems like wind or solar that the customer didn’t use.

“There is no such thing as a small piece of melanoma,” Fitzpatrick told the committee, “because, as it grows in time it causes bigger and bigger problems. And that’s the fundamental problem with net-metering.”

Fitzpatrick’s comments pits the utility against rational thought, modern innovation, and logic.  I mean, even Art Wittich is sponsoring a bill to increase this practice so you know it isn’t controversial.  Montana’s solar industry is growing, bringing jobs and reducing future pollution.  Basically, what Fitzpatrick is saying I guess is that he considers growth in any industry other than his own to be a cancer. Duly noted.


Ohio Governor John Kasich in Helena Today

Ohio’s Republican Governor will be in Helena today to “rally” about an amendment to the U.S. Constitutional Convention he would like called in hopes that it will pass a balanced budget amendment.  As many have already pointed out, passing a balanced-budget amendment wouldn’t actually balance the budget.  Only decisions by congress about what to fund and how to pay for it can do that.  So anyone attending this rally in Helena needs to tell Montanans, on the record,  which specific programs they would cut.  The Montana Budget and Policy Center has a good fact sheet out on this nonsense:Fact Sheet ConCon ResolutionFINAL.

Kasich is an interesting figure in GOP politics because of his vocal criticism of fellow Republicans who oppose Medicaid expansion, which Kasich supported. Ohio is moving forward with expansion and expects 366,000 to sign up for Medicaid expansion by this summer.

“The opposition to [Medicaid Expansion] was really either political or ideological,” Kasich told the Associated Press. “I don’t think that holds water against real flesh and blood, and real improvements in people’s lives.”

Gov. Kasich told a local state legislator,

“I respect the fact that you believe in small government. I do too. I also happen to know that you’re a person of faith.”

“Now, when you die and get to the, get to the, uh, to the meeting with St. Peter, he’s probably not gonna ask you much about what you did about keeping government small, but he’s going to ask you what you did for the poor,” Kasich said. “Better have a good answer.”


9 Comments on "Political Quick Hits: Wild Animals, Melanomas and St. Peter Edition"

  1. Reading about the balanced budget amendment reminded me of this quote;
    “The balancing of the budget will not in itself place a teaspoonful of milk in a hungry baby’s stomach, or remove the rags from its mother’s back.” -John L. Lewis, 1933 (UMW President ) (CIO co-founder)

  2. Not spending more then you take in is a good idea. The Montana legislature can’t leave until they pass a balanced budget. Why should Congress be any different. John Kasich and the Republicans were doing their best in 2014 to keep the competition off the ballot in the Libertarian candidate for Governor and Attorney General. So much for the free market.

    • How about if libertarians run as Republicans? Better odds there for all “not-Democrats.”

    • This balanced budget stuff makes me really tired. No one “balances” their budget if they own a home or buy a new car. You borrow money to finance these large, expensive items. Most people have credit card debt as well. Not a balanced budget at all even in the majority of middle class families…..

      The federal government does the same thing. It borrows money at low rates of interest to finance large projects like highways, big buildings, wars, the cost of the salaries of the useless Congress, etc. So what? The country can mint a coin at any time, declare its worth, and pay off the entire “debt” in an instant if it so desires because the country, unlike a family, backs its currency with the size of its economy. And that is why it does not do so – because if it did, it would literally destroy the economies of the entire world market at that same instant.

      The national debt is a number on a piece of paper – and is essentially meaningless. It is a bookkeeping term, nothing more and nothing less. The Congress could get rid of the debt limit if it wanted to and stop all this crisis crying and it would make absolutely no difference at all in our economy, or the way the country does business. It is simply a marker, like a red line in a bookkeeping ledger at the end of the year. If you erased it, nothing would change, the books would simply continue on, as they do anyway.

      So all this posturing and yelling about it does nothing but gin up controversy where there is none. It makes for good headlines, gets lots of donations to campaign war chests and such, but little else. And the Congress of the United States will NEVER EVER pass a balanced budget amendment because they know all this! Too bad they are too dishonest to tell the American people the truth about it too.

  3. Dave we could turn that around and say republicans should run as Libertarians. Remember Republicans were once a 3rd party as well. Why should Republicans worry about competition. We know that Rehberg was a good Republican by supporting many big government programs and voting several times to increase the debt ceiling and the national debt. Rehberg kept telling us spending was a problem, yet continued to spend more during his time if office. He had already submitted all his earmarks one year before declaring he’d no longer support earmarks. So this must be what you are supporting by working to eliminate the competition.

  4. Are we going to continue paying Ms. Brown to serve the citizens of Montana?

  5. Dear Linda, do you have proof of the claims you are making? If so, post them, of not- go away.

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