• State of ignorance


The Empire State? Hah!

New York is, at best, in a state of disarray. And, that’s on a good day, which we don’t have very often.

The latest calumny is the State Senate, where a couple of sleazeballs got elected by a constituency as unaware or unintelligent as has ever been seen. They’re in the do-little governing body despite one of them being indicted for slashing his girlfriend’s face with a bottle and the other one — who probably doesn’t even live in the district he represents — adamantly refusing to pay $60,000 in fines he owns the New York City Campaign Finance Board. He already was shone up for what he is by getting caught trying to steer a bunch of taxpayer dollars — several hundred thousand of them — to a company he operates and would use that money to pay him.

Meet Hiram “Slasher” Monserrate (left above) and Pedro “Deadbeat” Espada Jr.

The two Democrats cooked up a plot with the minority Republicans in the Senate — and the backing of billionaire, failed gubernatorial candidate Tom Golisano — to throw their votes to the GOP side, thus returning the Republicans to their long-held majority by a 32-30 vote count. If everyone keeps his word. Given the record of many of our utterly useless state legislators, expecting everyone to stay true to a pledge is laughable.

A judge who the Dems asked to overturn the Senate deal recommended that instead of one branch of government telling a co-equal branch what to do the two sides spend the weekend working out their internecine squabble. Slasher and The Deadbeat promptly swung into action — by heading for plush seats at Yankee Stadium to watch the Yankees vs. the Mets while the chaos they helped create was left behind them.

Interesting that Espada doesn’t pay the money he owes, but he can afford to treat he and his buddy to cushioned reserved seats in the Legends Suite section of the new stadium, which offers in-seat wait service, concierge and exclusive access to a restaurant with an all-inclusive buffet, top-shelf liquor and private restrooms. Face value of each ticket is $650.

Espada says he was lucky enough to come across tickets for $150 each. He didn’t say how he got 77% off, if he was even telling the truth. Legislators are not supposed to accept gifts, discounts and the like. But then, we’re talking about a guy who has shown he doesn’t give a damn about rules or public opinion.

I’m not sure what Golisano was doing over the weekend while the pot he stirred by using his money and influence to manipulate an elected government boiled and bubbled. Or what Dean Skelos, the Long Island GOP incompetent who succeeded the arrogant Joe Bruno as Senate Majority Leader then dropped to Minority Leader after the last election, was doing. But they’re smaller fish in this stew of avarice, sloth and stupidity even if their names are better known around the state.

There is a rather simple solution to the embarassing mess that has made New York State’s government a national laughingstock. It will come at the next election, or the next several elections. Vote out virtually everyone now in office, and their staffs along with them. You know, those unelected and anonymous people who stroke their bosses’ egos and stoke the fires of plots and ploys.

Forget the bullshit campaign rhetoric the incumbents will toss around about the need for experienced people at the wheel. Given the ride they’ve taken us on, it would be refreshing to let some amateurs navigate. Their road map could be reading the state Constitution and the various laws and rules by which the state is supposed to be governed, and ignoring what the current incumbents have done.

It could not possibly work worse than what we have today.


About Bill Dowd

Webmaster/social media coordinator for the Southern Rensselaer County NY Rotary Club.

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