Left Behinds

The anti-andrewsullivan.com. Or, the Robin Hood (Maid Marian?) of bright pink Blogger blogs.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

A personal message to Governor George E. "Georgie" Pataki

You're not going to be President. Stop trying to fuck us up.

He is caught between the Republican Senate leader, Joseph L. Bruno, who has called for no new taxes of any kind in the budget, and the Democratic Assembly speaker, Sheldon Silver, who wants far more spending on public schools in New York City, to comply with a court order - an order the governor has chosen to appeal.

Both sides of the Legislature are likely to resist his plan, announced on Friday, to cut more than $1 billion in Medicaid costs.
For conservatives, he is expected to propose at least $3 billion worth of tax cuts in a budget of roughly $110 billion, though much of the tab would be left to his successor.

You're not even going to be Vice-President. You're not going to get a Cabinet post or an ambassadorship. You're going to get a window-dressing job and accomplish nothing more than the very little you've already made of your mediocre life. Learn to meditate or something and come to terms with it.


The State of New York


  • At 12:36 AM, Blogger Solomon Grundy said…

    Heh. The budget-busting tax cuts suck, but isn't there some pork barrel scam with Medicaid? I thought that was Tom Suozzi's big claim to fame, cleaning up the Medicaid scam.

  • At 10:19 AM, Blogger Antid Oto said…

    Huh. I'm not aware of that. I know he cleaned up some corruption in Nassau, but on his Web site all he brags about with Medicaid is this: "as President of the New York State County Executives Association, Suozzi successfully lobbied the State Legislature and the Governor to pass a Medicaid cap that will save New York taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars."

    But he is planning to make a campaign issue of Medicaid fraud. Still, not all the Medicaid cuts have to do with that:

    "The cuts include large items, like requiring hospitals and nursing homes to cover inflation, and smaller ones, like eliminating most of the $14.9 million the system spends on prescriptions for Viagra and other drugs taken for erectile dysfunction.

    But the proposed cuts are largely offset by an additional $1.1 billion the state must pay this year because of new caps on how much localities contribute to the Medicaid system."

    The fucked up part there is requiring hospitals and nursing homes to cover inflation.

  • At 5:21 PM, Blogger Solomon Grundy said…

    The Medicaid scam is kind of complicated, but it seems like a pretty defensible good-government measure to clean it up. That's how Suozzi proposes to pay for NYC's public schools (from the Medicaid scam savings).

    Also, a lot of Politicker readers have come to Left Behinds today (I posted a few wiseass comments there), and they all click on this post. I think you have a knack for the oratory they enjoy.

  • At 5:48 PM, Blogger Antid Oto said…

    Mm. I was unclear. I have no beef with Suozzi making an issue of cleaning up Medicaid because I know nothing about it and he basically seems like a decent guy, if a little too full of himself. (Do you have a link to any background on the scam, by the way?) I was just saying that Pataki is using Medicaid corruption as a cover to shift the entire cost of inflation onto hospitals and nursing homes.

  • At 6:02 PM, Blogger Solomon Grundy said…

    I see. Yeah, that makes sense.

    Hm, did you read the NY Press story I linked to in my Tom Suozzi post below? It's pretty good. Anyhow, Azi Adubato or whatever his name is sums up the Medicaid scam thusly:

    But “Mr. Spitzer, who is running for governor, now has a big question mark on his resumé as a reformer,” The Times, usually Spitzer’s biggest booster, editorialized last July, because of another scandal: Medicaid.

    The state’s $44 billion Medicaid program is—increibly—almost half of the state’s total budget. But from Albany, it looks like a great moneymaker.

    Here’s the scheme: The cost of the program is split three ways. D.C. kicks in half; and Albany and local counties split the other half. From Albany and from the seats of local government, it looks like spending a dollar brings in three free ones, so spending and fraud have of course exploded. New York spends more on Medicaid than California and Texas combined.

    Mayor Bloomberg quietly lobbied Albany’s leadership to mind their money with little success, and Spitzer has done nothing; no Wall Street-style investigation into widespread reports of widespread Medicaid fraud. All of which bolsters Suozzi’s candidacy and the notion that he, not Spitzer, is the real reformer. (Suozzi refused to go on the record with anything but praise for at least some of Spitzer’s work as Attorney General.)

    Suozzi seized the moment, and started Fix Albany, a shoestring operation that sought to cap Medicaid spending and fund Democratic candidates looking to unseat incumbents of either party in Albany. Shortly after announcing his plan, the influential lobbyist he’d hired, Patricia Lynch dropped Suozzi as a client. Now that is responsive.

    It wasn’t until editorial boards and policy wonks (Suozzi considers himself a wonk) echoed an NYU study that called New York’s state legislature the worst in the nation that a cap on Medicaid spending was finally signed.

  • At 6:07 PM, Blogger Antid Oto said…

    Ah. Now I see why the cap on local spending was such a big deal.

    Suozzi's still not going to win, but like I said, he seems decent enough. I hope losing to Spitzer isn't the end of the line for him.

  • At 7:08 PM, Blogger Solomon Grundy said…

    Like I said in my post below, it's a lot easier to buck the Albany establishment when you've got Harold Ickes and the rest of daddy's rolodex to fall back on. He seems to be promoting some good reforms at the moment, but I'm suspicious of his motives (and, thus, his reliability). I don't trust Suozzi. I don't like the way he flirts with the GOP. I don't like his wishy washy stance on abortion. I don't like what he represents in American politics (the new aristocracy). I just don't like him.


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