May 15, 2008

Time For The Legislature To Act

We at Niagara Times have had enough of the Niagara County Legislature's inaction on several issues. First and foremost, global warming. The situation has gotten so bad that the Interior Department declared the polar bear a threatened species Wednesday, saying it must be protected because of the decline in Arctic sea ice from global warming. What has the NC Leg done about it? Not a damn thing.

Secondly, the earthquake in China. Chinese rescuers are taking relief supplies to the area of the epicenter. Meanwhile, flattened mountain villages are being searched for tens of thousands of missing and buried victims amid fears the death toll of nearly 15,000 would soar far higher. Not a single Legislator has offered to help out.

Lastly, the world crisis related to the price of gasoline. While Venezuela President Hugo Chavez continues to wreak havoc on the world oil markets, the Leg has done nothing to address this. Sure, they talked about eliminating the sales tax for a few months, but we're talking substantive, permanent change.

While I may be in the minority in believing that the Leg should act on the first two, it's good to know that I am not alone on the last one. You see, the Union Sun & Journal in Wednesday's editorial stated "the true assessment of how the county is doing is around us. It’s in the windows of shuddered businesses and even at the gas pumps". Finally, we agree with the paper.

The NC Leg's failure to enact substantive legislation to influence the world oil markets is inexcusable. Why they have not interjected themselves into this crisis is incomprehensible. Where is the resolution calling for the resignation of dictator Chavez? Better yet, why not send a dignitary from NC to Venezuela to negotiate a settlement?

Okay, enough tongue-in-cheek, let's get to the idiocy and hypocrisy of this editorial. To say that "the true assessment of how the county is doing is reflected in the gas pumps" has got to be one of the most heinous injustices of journalism ever printed. It shows that Tim Marren, the editor at the US&J, is so blinded for his disdain for the Leg that he is willing to blame a world crisis on the body.

Secondly, Marren stated that "Niagara County Legislators are bringing up the Business Council’s giving them a failing grade in economics. It’s only a year later, guys. Get over it and move on". Marren then goes on to congratulate wannabe legislator Richard Marasco for once again talking about the HSBC deal. So the Leg is bad because they are talking about positive developments in reaction to a year old story, but Marasco is good because he keeps repeating a year old story?

The fact of the matter is that the US&J is a "news source". To insinuate that the NC Leg is in a position to influence world oil markets, and thus the price we pay at the pumps, is irresponsible at best. We realize that this is an editorial, but people may believe what they've read. Is a purpose served by misleading the public?

It's one thing to be political and not shy away from the fact that you're political. It's another to hide behind a shroud of journalism while pushing your political views. Unfortunately, this has become the M.O. for the Union Sun & Journal.

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

I love Dan Kane. I want Dan Kane reinstated. Who is Dan Kane?

Anonymous said...

How many times have we been through this Hobbes? The NC Legislature can only act on something if Maziarz say's they can.

Anonymous said...

The same day that Tim Marren talked about the dismal housing market in Niagara County and blamed the Republicans, the Buffalo News ran a story which said "the Buffalo Niagara region is one of the hottest housing markets in the country."

So which is it? One would assume that references to "For Sale" signs in a "news"paper would be supported by some facts. Maybe the the editors of the Lockport Journal should start reading the Buffalo News.

Of course, the Lockport Journal has now resorted to relying on an idiot like Rich Marasco as its source for information on multi-million dollar projects.

Could somebody tell me how it is that the Buffalo News and the Lockport Journal cost the same amount.

Anonymous said...

watch out TIM it looks like your next on the list.

WilliamWallace said...

Are you frickin' serious....global warming? The whole thing is a crock. Years ago the earth was going to freeze because of the massive hole in the ozone, now we are going to melt. Sorry, but the earth does change temperatures and adapts on its own. You can start by riding your bike to work, I'll stick with my car.

William Wallace said...

Also, gas prices are set by the market. Oil is a limited resource and directly affects the cost of gas. Politicians that try to do things about the gas prices are usually playing politics by appealing to the masses. This political issue appeals to everyone. One good thing from seeing gas prices this high is that people are beginning to see just how much higher NYS taxes are, even on gas. A limit on the tax is the only action that makes sense because as prices go up, the government doesn't need to endlessly take more and more tax money to continue to waste.
Another good thing that can come from this is that it will help move our nation towards using a more independent, renewable resource for transportation. Let the market run its course (even though the market is not so open with all of the government intervention). Further government intervention will only further complicate issues (like giving gov't subsidies for ethanol, then later realizing that the subsidies ended up raising the cost of food).

Anonymous said...

Just like people freaking out because their 'Uncle Joe's' manufacturing job was sent overseas, the world market is bigger than Niagara County. Gas prices are set by a worldwide market demand. Sometimes, your job isn't worth being kept in Niagara County. Oil is just becoming a more expensive commodity, for everyone.
People need to come out of their boxes and realize that things are bigger than their little neighborhood.
This whole thing demonstrates, however, how badly NYS and Niagara County need to be better competitors in the world market. They need to have lower taxes and minimize the size government and their expenses or business will continue to go where its less expensive for them to operate. 20 cents per gallon of gas higher amongst other higher taxes won't do it. Neither will random gov't discounts given through corrupt programs. Cuts across the board are needed.

Anonymous said...

Its funny how 99 percent to the comments come from government employees. Even lefties like larry indirectly works for the county. If not for the government jobs, larry would be pushing carts at Tops, hobbes would be picking up trash for this buddies at Modern and Ross would still be at Niagara Wheatfield paying for this second family.

Anonymous said...

To the person that has suggested these comments about the stupidity of Tim Marren are part of a conspiracy, I would suggest that maybe the conspiracy is with the Union Sun. If the editors are going to use the price of gasoline as an indicator of the health of our economy, then shouldn't that same editorial reference our federal reps? Where is Louise Slaughter's name? How about Brian Higgins? I certainly don't think Cafarella or Smolinski have ever met with the Saudis or discussed our country's emergency reserves with members of Congress.

The Union Sun is partisan, although not as partisan as this blog. However, this blog does not depend on revenues from advertisers or subscriptions from people they are insulting by printing such stupid crap.

Anonymous said...

Global Warming Hoax is in Retreat
http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/home/daily/site_050908/content/01125113.guest.html

To the previous anon., it's probably good that the federal reps haven't been playing politics with gas prices, they should leave it to the market and if any negotiating is needed, there is plenty of more appropriate DC gov't to take care of that.

Larry Castellani said...

I think the Leg should act on environmental issues. Not that they should presume to solve the global warming problem which is real, Rush Limbaugh’s incisive analysis notwithstanding. But they could and should do some small things that could be big when others follow suit. There are over a billion plastic bottles disposed of in this country every DAY. Every day, Sports Fans. Most is not recycled. Yes, plastic had long since been here to stay, blah, blah, blah. And yes I know it has positive uses which are necessary, blah, blah, blah. But why buy water in bottles the purity of which is often if not most of the time much less than your tap water. So the Leg should pass a law banning plastic water bottles and grocery bags from most stores. Let them figure out the details. NC needs to do all it can to clean up our “tourist destination.” Plastic bottles and bags are a good start. Maybe the nation will follow suit. Some cities and other countries have begun already. In Ireland a tax was placed on water bottles and plastic bags and consumption was cut by 90% proving they are not necessary let alone desireable.

Anonymous said...

Tim should be on some sort of list- to be fired. The Union Sun is a joke. I've lived here all my life and it's ridiculous.There are many, many articles that seem biased and opinionated. Newspapers are supposed to be stating facts...facts from both, all sides of a story. Don't even get me started on all the errors that are in there. Apparently they just spell check now-a-days; no one seems to actually proof read anything. That fact really makes me wonder about the accuracy of the stories.

fat tony said...

I agree with Larry's sentiment is not his specific remedies. There are many counties across the county that look at global issues and in some small why try to do their part. I think Rick Updegrove's efforts a few years back about preference for local companies for governmetn contracts (did that ever pass?0 is a step in that direction.

Also, will new county building be built to LEED standards? What are county policies on recycling. What can we do to close the local hazardous waste dump?

There are many complicated issues that with a little progressive thought, the county could help advance is some small way.

The editorial board at the US&J could help drive such change. Unfortunately, they're too busy writing editorials blaming the Leg for high gas prices. When will Tim Marren be fired?

Anonymous said...

there is a much larger issue involving fraudulent activities in --" municipal"--- employees pensions and lawyer consultants let the ag make Crackdown in to the "triple dipping "

Anonymous said...

Tim Marren has made it clear that his constitutional right to editorial expression will not be encumbered by any responsibility to be factual or relevant. No doubt he continues to be influenced by the likes of Tom C. How naive!

Anonymous said...

Larry Castration, so we are supposed to further burden people by taxing plastics, resulting in the costs being passed on to consumers, and this is going to clean up the neighborhoods? Seems like the issues are with the people residing in those areas. If they wont recycle on their own, nothing will stop them from throwing their crap on the streets.
Global Warming is a hoax. You musta been a hippy Mr. Castration. Time to get out of the 70s, realize that the world is changing temperatures and will continue to do so on its own, it is in a warming phase. But old man, you should realize that it was in a cooling phase before. We have so little perspective on world temperature change as we have just recently been able to keep track of them. The whole Global Warming thing is a crock way to get gov't pork through the system. I am all about responsible use of our resources, but to think Niagara County needs to enact GLOBAL WARMING legislation is absurd and a waste of our county's money. Leave the federal issues to the federal government.

Anonymous said...

Francine DelMonte, 46, of Niagara Falls, was charged with loitering at 8:18 a.m. Thursday. DelMonte was walking on 19th Street Thursday morning and offered a motorist oral sex in exchange for money, according to the driver, who alerted police. DelMonte also was taken in on a warrant for a previous loitering charge.