Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Hypocrisy in government

I know - you're wondering why this is the title...isn't that a given??? But...

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio is holding hearings in the Toledo-area as a result of rate increase request by Toledo Edison. Of course, this area has some of the highest utility rates in the state and our elected officials have been clamoring for rate reductions - or no increases - for years. They all say they'll work to reduce those rates because they have such a detrimental impact on residents and our ability to attract and retain businesses. They go on about how these companies need to keep their costs down so the area can prosper.

So what's hypocritical? Aren't these admirable positions to take? Well, they would be if this was a consistent approach to things which cost too much and should be reduced - like the cost of local government.

Increased costs of government have the same detrimental impacts on residents and businesses as high utility costs do, but somehow the similarity escapes our elected officials. Imagine the lower tax rates, less regulation and smaller government that would result if these same elected officials applied their 'utility cost logic' to something over which they had some control - and legal authority.

I can only wish our local elected officials would be as diligent with government costs as they are with those of utility companies.


Tim Higgins said...


This isn't hypocritical, it is entirely consistent. Elected officials are only concerned about money not confiscated by government. It makes for great press, establishes a "defender of the people" persona, and has no effect on the black hole of city and county spending.

Besides, we will need the money we save on utilities to pay the .75% income tax that we just extended.

Jay Ott said...


What I'd like to know is how you as an "ex gadfly of the commissioners office," the "voice of unreason", the "R's golden child", the "spewer of silliness", and lastly, a "cracked pot" is capable of getting this right? (sarcasm off)

Oh, never mind you can prove it while some people in gov't and media can only presume and make assertions which speaks volumes about your title of this post.

Maggie Thurber said...

Tim - sorry...there I was using logic and reason...Oh well...

Maggie Thurber said...

Wow, Jay - who calls me those things? No one of consequence, I'm sure...

Besides, I've always considered it to be high praise when those who have no response to facts and reason resort to name-calling and ad hominem attacks. It obviously means I'm right.


Carol said...


I returned from Columbus yesterday where the topic of the last couple days is economic growth in Ohio. The utility rates were almost always first on the list of reasons why we are failing to keep businesses in the area.

First Energy supplies power to many areas of NW Ohio and SE Michigan, so why is it that we (in Toledo et al) continuously get picked to pay the higher rates? Isn't it apparent that there is not an abundance of money around here? Our population is smaller now, unemployment is high, Columbia Gas thinks they can rape the public with their rates, and now Edison wants to take a shot at finishing the ruin of the area.

I chose to live in Toledo, but in all honesty, I am very close to making a change in residence. I know there is no panacea, but it's getting more and more impossible to survive here. And I'm not referring to an extravagant lifestyle. I'm talking about survival. From my viewpoint, Tennessee, Virginia and Idaho are making a strong case for my tax dollars.

It always amazes me that we, the people, are expected to scale back our spending in order to afford such 'luxuries' as utilities, homes, a reasonable car to drive, and food. But our city government just doesn't understand the necessity of being frugal. And that includes scaling back the size of our city government. Our rulers truly don't understand that in order to KEEP people and business here they will have to give up something. Instead they put that burden on all of us and try to convince us that we should be happy to keep paying more so that they don't have to do with less.

In the words of our Mayor .... It just ain't right.


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