Thursday, January 09, 2014

Rick Scott's 2800 Pound Dog and Pony Show

I just updated my list of non-partisan reasons to dis-elect Rick Scott, since I’ve reached 150 of them now. #149 had to do with his delay in picking a lieutenant governor – though to be fair, given the last one he had, Rick Scott may be doing us a favor by not picking a new one.

The 150th reason (which ends up being #144 in my numbering) is the subject of this posting. Here it is:

144) Rick Scott has tried to impress voters with a shallow citation of how many regulations he has deleted.

Scott and his campaign say that they deleted 2800 regulations from the books. This is a big number used in an attempt to impress voters, but it lacks the most important considerations: Why was it a good thing to get rid of each of these 2800 regulations? Were they all bad? (Are lawmakers that incompetent?) Did Scott delete any useful or good regulations? Are any of them just out of date (and if so, why should Scott tout this as a serious accomplishment)? The big number is nothing but a gimmick as it stands.

I’m sure most of you have seen lists of “stupid laws.” You know what I mean: Stuff like, “In New Brunswick it’s illegal to spit on an emu.” We have a good laugh at these, but have you ever asked yourself why anyone would pass such a law?

Well, it may have been a joke, but it’s also possible that someone passed it for what seemed like a good reason. Someone may have actually spit on an emu, which then turned and kicked that someone in the jaw. A law probably wasn’t needed, of course, but laws and regulations that seem silly may have had a perfectly legitimate concern behind them.

As I said in the description, Rick Scott flashes that big number (“2800 regulations, whoa! He must really care about our freedoms!”), but unless and until he explains why each and every one of those 2800 regulations deserved deletion, it’s nothing but show.

Sure, some may have been bad. But how many were good, or served some good purpose, and should not have been deleted? Given Scott’s haywire attitude towards so many other issues, you might want to ask if he deleted some things that were meant to stop harm or even death.

Maybe a few were outdated. (“You can’t park your velocipede in a school zone.”) That’s fair game for deletion, but Rick Scott deserves no credit for getting rid of things like that. It doesn’t serve any purpose other than to save an inch of column space somewhere.

If I can, I’d like to find a list of those 2800 regulations, and see what they were. You can be sure Scott himself didn’t carefully read or consider all 2800 before he swiped them with his pen. All he was after was that big number. In the meantime, be sure and tell people not to fall for Scott’s 2800-pound dog and pony show.

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