6.28.04 Michael Moore, NY Needs You
Today, the Rochester
Democrat and Chronicle published a
page full of outraged letters addressing legislative inaction in
Albany NY. Mine was one of them.
Due to lack of space,
they left out the first 2 paragraphs, but here it is in full:
NY’s legislature is not the kookiest among
the 50 states, but it is proof that our right to vote doesn’t
guarantee a government “for the people.” Our once-progressive state
has stalled out. Federal money goes untapped. Counties and schools
are fiscally strangled. Innovation is dead.
Reform? They can’t even get a law enacted.
Throw the bums out? Only 30 incumbents have lost in 2,300
re-election campaigns in 22 years. Constitutional convention? Same
bums. Court action? Ignored.
The only path left is public pressure –
driven by an alliance of journalists, opinion-shapers, bloggers, and
movie-makers. My 5-Point Plan:
(1) Name the well-functioning states.
Newspapers should publish ongoing graphic comparisons with NY on key
indicators: legislative functioning; progress in reform on social
issues and business environment; and outcome indicators such as
poverty rates and job growth. Aim for shame.
(2) Gallagher and other journalists should
take the gloves off and put into simple tabloid terms the
heavy-handed power politics in Albany – bosses, backrooms, and
retaliation for stepping out of line. Go national.
(3) Use the network of bloggers to keep the
(4) Invite Michael Moore in to do a movie.
(5) Get a governor who cares – an experienced
reform-minded policy wonk who doesn’t mind staying up all night to
get the job done. I think Bill Clinton’s available.