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State of The State Address: 'Mistakes Were Clearly Made,' Christie Says

Christie delivers State of the State speech in Trenton Tuesday.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie delivers his State Of The State address at the Statehouse, Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014, in Trenton, N.J. By Julio Cortez/AP Photo
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie delivers his State Of The State address at the Statehouse, Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014, in Trenton, N.J. By Julio Cortez/AP Photo

Gov. Chris Christie tackled his administration’s current "Bridgegate" turmoil in his State-of-the-State speech Tuesday in Trenton, saying “mistakes were clearly made” and he bears ultimate responsibility.

Christie addressed the ongoing investigations into the George Washington Bridge lane-closure scandal, which last week resulted in the firing of a top-level aide and the implication of another, in the first lines of his speech delivered to the 216th Legislature in the Assembly chambers in Trenton.

“We let down the people we are entrusted to serve,’’ Christie said. “I am the governor and I am ultimately responsible for all that happens on my watch – both good and bad.”

Christie said his administration would cooperate with “all appropriate inquiries to ensure this breach of trust does not happen again.’’

The Christie administration has been rocked in the past week by revelations that former Deputy Chief of Staff Bridget Anne Kelly presided over the closure of lanes to the George Washington Bridge, causing gridlock for four days in the neighboring town of Fort Lee, as a form of political retaliation.

Both houses of the legislature plan to convene special committees to investigate the incident, which also has resulted in the departure of top-level executives of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

A separate, federal probe also has been announced to investigate the governor’s Stronger-than-the-Storm television advertisements, which used federal money to promote the Jersey Shore following Hurricane Sandy. Critics say the ads were equivalent to re-election ads for Christie, whose family was prominently featured.

In his speech, Christie mostly struck a congenial tone, emphasizing bipartisan accomplishments in his first term as a blueprint for the second.

Christie cited four balanced budgets, pension and tenure reform and a property tax cap as evidence of bipartisan accomplishments.

“The best part of our turnaround in these past four years is because we have chosen to work together,” Christie said. “We acted and we acted together.”

Speaking to the state Legislature, Christie asked that an interest arbitration cap that was passed in his first term be made permanent, saying that the cap had helped stem the rise of property taxes.

He pointed to the consolidation of the borough and the Township of Princeton as a model for more efficient government, resulting in a net tax reduction.

Christie called for an elimination of the cash-out of accrued sick time, something the governor called  a “billion dollar albatross." He asked the Legislature to adopt a “Zero means Zero” plan.

 “Sick time should be used when you are sick, and if you are lucky enough to be healthy, that should be your reward,’’ Christie said.

The governor praised the performance of New Jersey's schools, while saying that some are still underperforming. He said the same about teachers.

“While the vast majority of teachers are performing well, some are not and they should be removed from our classrooms,’’ Christie said.

In Camden, Christie said, the public school system graduated only three college-ready high school seniors.

“That’s obscene and unacceptable,” Christie said

Saying the current school calendar is not reflective of the times, the governor’s proposal to lengthen school days and the school year is expected to be short on details, which he promises to deliver to the legislature soon.

“Our school calendar is antiquated both educationally and culturally,’’ Christie said. “Life in 2014 demands something more for our students. It is time to lengthen both the school day and the school year in New Jersey.’’

Students in New Jersey are required to attend school 180 days a year, although some districts extend that, and some charter schools also extend the school days or school years to help students catch up.

Christie then turned to crime, citing the recent slaying of a Toms River native and Hoboken lawyer doing Christmas shopping at the Short Hills mall.

Christie made a pitch to passing reforms on bail procedures. Christie champions an amendment that would keep “dangerous criminals off the street and in jail until trial.’’ 

“Let us work together to pass bail reform in 2014,’’ Christie said.

Christie introduced Craig Hanlon, who attended the speech, who at 16 years old was in jail as a drug addict, but has turned his life around with the help of the drug court system, which Christie hailed as a huge success with an 11 percent drop in recidivism in drug-related crimes in New Jersey.

“No life is disposable,” Christie said.

Christie proposed expanding the program with a $500,000 grant program to  set up a jobs programs for those in the drug court program.    

Christie then turned to the rebuilding of the Jersey Shore following Hurricane Sandy. Christie reiterated his commitment to a full rebuilding of Jersey Shore homes and businesses, something that has been a hallmark of Christie speeches since the storm.

“I will not rest until every person hurt by Sandy has their life back,’’ Christie said. “That is my mission.’’

Christie said a little less than 73 percent of the housing recovery money spent has gone to low- or middle-income families.

“And we’re proud of that,’’ he said.

Christie finished his speech by forcefully calling for pension reform – a call he has repeated several times in his tenure. The pension contribution and debt service, he said, takes about $1 billion out of the state’s budget.

“That’s nearly $1 billion we can spend on education,’’ he said. “That we can’t invest in infrastructure improvement. That we can’t use to put more cops on the street.”

Christie said the “time to avoid this conversation and these choices is nearly over,’’ and called for the state Legislature to adopt an “attitude of choice.’’ 

“The results from our refusal to choose – a weaker New Jersey with a middle class burdened by even higher taxes. That is an abandonment of our duty,’’ he said.

Spooner January 16, 2014 at 12:35 AM
Jeff B- Obama's advisors initially were talking $1.7-2.1T, then they scaled back to $1.3-4T in stimulus, only to get about $787B. About 1/3 of what was estimated as lost. Clearly no where near it? As for Government bailing out Lehman... wasn't going to happen. Remember they(the Fed) had bailed out Bear in March 08, which was acquired by Morgan. No bank wanted anything to do with Lehman Period! After the collapse, Paulson read the riot act to the banks:B of A, Wells Fargo, Morgan, etc...
Robin B January 16, 2014 at 08:03 AM
"@Robin Brueckner- so your saying that the Government should not have bailed out the banks. . .that would have led to a disaster!" What do you call the last five years???????? My point was Dodd/Frank rules went beyond any reasonablness in attempting another liberal 'social justice' 'correction' to 'American unfairness'. "The "unaffordable house for everyone" policy started in the Clinton administration.." Correct but it was NOT a widespread clamatous invasion of the private sector untill DODD/FRANK. The goverment bails out it's buddies: it's contributors, as in the auto unions with GM/Chrysler, and unions galore with Obama's 'stimulus'..... What Paulson probably told the banks, something like: " Hey you guys, quit exposing our socialist authortian DODD/FRANK rules and regulations with your greed...we big government goons never expected YOU sleazy capitalists to get on the gravy train, too....
Whoisleadingus?? January 16, 2014 at 08:27 AM
So I what I hear so far is that Liberals believe President Obama needed to spend money to get the economy out of a recession and the Republicans have attempted to block him time and time again. Liberals also point to the fact that President Bush left the economy this way. Is that right? Well if I am not mistaken, wasnt it the Democrats who controlled the House and Senate during President Bush's term? If the House and Senate create the law, then wouldnt it be logical to point fingers at the Democrats??? What it sounds like what happened in Bush's Presidency is that the House provided the fuel and the Senate provided the matches, lit this whole thing on fire and then pointed to President Bush. Hmmm maybe we should look at the facts: By the end of the Bush Presidency the ratio of national debt to GDP was 62%. In just a short 5 years, it is now 101%. We actually owe more than we can provide. Hmmm that is weird. Oh wait....it is all ok because the government will give you a free phone!!!!! Let us just be thankful that our ambassadors are not being attacked, that our government doesnt sell weapons to Mexican drug cartels, and that they dont target people who do not agree with them politically. Wait....more important news is breaking...2 lanes of a bridge were just shutdown. Oh my God the inhumanity!!!!
Robert Yates January 16, 2014 at 09:33 AM
@Joe R: you too are espousing the broken window fallacy as a legitimate economic system. It is crazy to suggest that real growth (as opposed to debt and fiat money driven growth) is derived from the process of destroying things and rebuilding them. War is always a lose-lose economic situation in the long run. Sure in the short run a whole sector of the economy makes money producing tanks, bombs, planes, guns, bullets, jeeps, uniforms, oil, food, etc, but it is paid for with money that is first extorted from the people and or borrowed or printed. And even if you consider these purchases capital, the capital is destroyed. It does not produce a ROI. Keynesian economics is a false system and history will reveal this fact very soon. The robber barons came about because of government, not in spite of it. How do you think the RR was able to lay track? Eminent domain (even though the constitution only permits takings for public use, not redistribution to private entities) How do you think oil pipe lines are laid? That is right; with the same illegitimate use of eminent domain. Livingston (a early robber baron one might say) was given a monopoly (that's right: by the government) to run steam ships in the Hudson until Gibbons and a young Vanderbilt ignored this unconstitutional restriction on trade and were ultimately vindicated by the Supreme Court. Ironically Vanderbilt used that same privilege once he got rich running steam ships. Without government privileges, corporations would more often succumb to competition and the massive size corporations have come to enjoy would rarely come about. Freedom is a wonderful thing and so are the laws of nature. In due time, they will exact their price. Lehman should have went out of business. JP Morgan Chase, Citi, Wells Fargo, Goldman and all the other bailout queens should have gone the way of the dinosaurs. Competent banks would have sprouted up in their place. This system rewards failure and incompetence and it repulses me.
Andy Pat January 16, 2014 at 09:42 AM
R Yates: My guess is that you would not have had the gov't bail out anyone. Not the big banks; not large auto manufacturers; no gov't assistance to foreclosure victims (and yes I feel some were victims, not all). And I guess cutting spending during the recession helps the economy? This is reckless economics. My reading suggestions for you include 2 nobel laureates, Paul Krugman and Joe Stiglitz, along with Jared Bernstein and Robert Reich. BTW, Reich's new Film "Inequality for All" gives a 90 minute synopsis of macroeconomic policy and its effects in America over the last 100 years..
Joe R January 16, 2014 at 09:47 AM
The libertarian or Ayn Rand philosophy (cult) is to do nothing when there is a depression or severe recession. Just stand by and allow millions to be unemployed and by the way, let's fire more public sector employees and increase the unemployment rate. The libertarian philosophy is that poor people are lazy and deserve to be punished, just let them rot in the gutter or beg for charity. All in the name of mindless robotic austerity in a time of total economic meltdown. There were no bank failures in Canada during the great recession of 2008. Canada did not go on a deregulating spree as we did in the US, they kept their bank regulations strong.
Andy Pat January 16, 2014 at 09:53 AM
The men Yates mention are very successful businessmen. I am happy they have enjoyed extreme success in capitalist markets. This has made them very wealthy. It does not make them savvy with regard to macroeconomics, nor does it mean they know what will create the large middle class that drives a sustained economy. And the path that took them to where they are now is not the pathway for everyone. As we all know many factors come into play for an individual's success or failure. Some within the individual's control, and some not in their control.
Robin B January 16, 2014 at 10:19 AM
"Why don't we all go around throwing rocks through our windows. That way we can hire repairman and the economy will improve right? No.." I agree completely. The reason this type of economic activity is wasteful can be thought of in terms of productivity and competitiveness: If our country is spending all its money on uneconomical repairs and another country is spending theirs on productivity improvements, say more economical methods of manufacturing, who do you think will prosper over time? In other words, you replace material/equipment when its becomes economically attractive to do so, as say, when annual maintenance costs render repairing an old car no longer worth keeping.
Robin B January 16, 2014 at 10:27 AM
In connection with my 10:19AM post. This is also why government "stimulus" spending accomplishes nothing: If you take a dollar from the private sector via taxes and government consumes perhaps a third of it in efficiencies, then doles out the remainder, there is not a net economic gain but rather a loss in productivity and efficiency. Even Obama now says the private sector is more efficient than than government ...too bad he doesn't believe it. And if you borrow say 40 cents of every government dollar spent, the current Obama rate, you burden our children and grandchildren with our recklessness plus interest.
Robert Yates January 16, 2014 at 10:54 AM
@Andy Pat: you are right. My belief is that the government should not have bailed out anyone. It is my further belief that government should cut spending dramatically regularly, not specifically during a recession or a time of growth. It is funny that you refer to this as reckless. I would say increasing the feds balance sheet to 4 trillion dollars over the last 6 years and increasing the national debt to 17 trillion is a wee bit more reckless than actually suggesting that we live within our means. I am quite familiar with Paul Krugman and with all due respect. he is an opportunistic quack, who has been wrong about pretty much everything he says. If you are only interested in academics, check out Mises, Rothbard and Hayek. Lastly it is false to describe the US economy as capitalistic or free. It is not. It has not been one for over 100 years. It is a crony capitalist oligarchy.
Joe R January 16, 2014 at 11:01 AM
During a depression money should be spent on creating jobs repairing the aging and decaying infrastructure, you know, like bridges and roads, not breaking windows and then repairing them. We should be restoring the strong banking regulations such as Glass-Steagall; Dodd-Frank is not strong enough, a mere fig leaf. I guess the libertarians would condemn Eisenhower for creating the interstate highway system as big government spending. Eisenhower strengthened Social Security and was pro union unlike the new crazy tea partyized GOP.
Robert Yates January 16, 2014 at 11:08 AM
@Joe R: I have never read Rand, so I can't say one way or the other whether I agree with her. I suspect I would agree with certain aspects of her thought, but certainly not all. Libertarianism is not a cult. It is a political philosophy that seeks to decrease the use of extortion and coercion in a person's life while increasing freedom. I am sure you are quite fit to tell others how they should life their lives and how they should spend their money, but it is not your moral prerogative. You seem to think that it is. You also seem to think that government is imbued with some unique capacity for altruism and justice. I hate to break it to you. They are not. They are generally ego-maniacal control freaks that are incapable of convincing people that there positions are correct and therefore that they should contribute to their cause. Instead they must use the legalized force and violence of government to get their way. It is also completely wrong to assert that libertarians believe poor people are lazy. That is a blatant misrepresentation that you are using to justify your advocacy of force and violence to support things that you consider good. And they may be good, but you have no right to force people to participate in your benevolence. And since you think you have that right, please explain to me where that authority comes from. Clearly you do not believe in liberty: what is it that you do believe in?
Spooner January 16, 2014 at 11:30 AM
...that authority comes from the "body politic" They implement their political philosophy on the people, which obviously you don't agree with. As the old saying goes:"politics is war by other means" Do you agree with that? __________________________________________________ ...and Robin: Keynes had proffered to Roosevelt that the Government should go on a national house building program. That never happen?
Joe R January 16, 2014 at 11:33 AM
I agree that we are becoming a crony capitalist oligarchy and that's how the libertarian billionaires want it. Both parties are beholden to right wing and libertarian billionaires who fund their campaigns. Groups like ALEC write the legislation that favors the rich and the corporations; the legislators, mostly but not exclusively, GOPers obediently submit and vote for said ALEC legislation. The GOP legislators are obedient stenographers for ALEC. But there are plenty of corporate Democrats who do the bidding of the corporate overlords. It should be we the people not we the corporations. Most of these libertarian billionaires are anti government and anti regulation because they want to be able to pollute with impunity. Libertarianism is a nightmare and is one of the causes of crony capitalism. Deregulation or no regulation leads to polluted and poisoned drinking water for over 300,000 people in WV.
Robert Yates January 16, 2014 at 11:44 AM
Also @Andy Pat & Joe R: just so you don't think that I am a mindless and heartless follower of the fellows that I mentioned above, I recently saw a video of Schiff do a little experiment in the Walmart parking lot where he went around asking consumers if they would pay an additional 15% on top of their final bill to help the minimum wage worker's at Walmart. Invariable the consumers said that they did believe the workers should be paid more, but that they were unwilling to pay ore for their goods. I thought it was interesting in terms of the context in which it was presented, but I also thought it a false context. It assumed that the only way Walmart could pay its employees more money is if Walmart raised the price of its goods. In a vacuum this is true, but it did not take into consideration the massive payouts to executives and shareholders (which includes the 4 Walton heirs). Combined they are worth some 132 billion dollars. Given the vast disparity between capital and labor, this appears to me to be unjust. But one must ask, how did Walmart get so big? Certainly cut throat efficiency policies and worker exploitation are some of the ways, but more importantly are the government privileges regularly provided to Walmart. They get special property tax breaks. They get the benefit of having a highly controlled and regulated currency exchange arrangement, so as to derive the benefit of slave labor in China. So please note that I do see that there are problems and freedom is not a perfect solution. It is just the best one I have some upon. The only thing worse than big business is big business in cahoots with big government. This is what we have now.
Robert Yates January 16, 2014 at 12:30 PM
@Spooner: who is the "body politic"? I would need to know that before I could answer. I think I would agree with the sentiment that politics is war by other means. While I think human beings definitely have a natural tendency toward community and coming together as a society, I also think that one should be free to join that society or not, as well as being free to leave if you think said society has become destructive of the ends for which you joined in the first place. Thomas Jefferson seemed to agree when he wrote the D of I. If you are not free to refuse, you are a slave. You are under the dictates of someone else. You are not free. In the end politics is a nice way to disguise theft, slavery and control. @Joe R: you are contradicting yourself in your own post. The Koch bros do claim to be libertarians, but they are not. Ron Paul is. They hated Ron Paul. I disagree with the MO of the Koch's because they seek government privilege. The Koch's of the world are not libertarian even if you continue to label them as such. Your post makes it clear that you are simply a partisan. Have you ever heard of George Soros; how about Warren Buffet? How about Bill Gates? These men are billionaires and they are socialists. So that assertions is not accurate. The fact of the matter is that the left and the right do not matter. It is the haves the have nots; it is the one's in control and the one's under control. If the Koch's and the Chevrons and the Dupont's of the world are polluting drinking water such that people are dying, I believe they should be prosecuted for murder or sued out of existence or boycotted out of existence. Your proposed taxation and regulation is what causes corruption and crony capitalism, not liberty and justice. You have it exactly backwards. The bottom line is that it doesn't matter what kind of government you have. What matters is the moral rectitude of the people in a society. If you have good people who respect the lives and liberties of others, you will have a generally peaceful and prosperous society. If not, you have the opposite. Didn't someone once say that society is man's soul writ large. I think this is pretty much right.
Spooner January 16, 2014 at 02:09 PM
Mr Yates- if you have to ask that question, you do yourself an injustice! A person that's astute in politics very well knows what the "body politic" is. We can start with the delegates at the Constitutional Convention and all the influence surrounding them. then we can proceed to the actual bodies of Government(the three branches) and again all that surrounds the individuals that inchoate those bodies. Then we can move on with history to the men and later woman who follow in their footsteps. The body politic simply put is the Government by it's representatives of the people in our Republic...
Robert Yates January 16, 2014 at 03:19 PM
Ah I see @Spooner. That is what I thought you meant but I wanted to make sure. In that case, I asked Joe R where government (and his approval of what the government does) gets its authority. Are you saying they get their authority from themselves? I don't think anyone claims that other than dictators. The founders claimed that government authority stems from the consent of the governed. This would only be true if everyone consented. Obviously, that is not the case and those who do not consent are nonetheless subject to the will of the government, so their authority does not stem from consent. I think the Greeks thought government authority stemmed from the moral obligation of the educated, rich and wise class to direct and foster the well being of the lesser capable lower class. In other words, they believed there were people who by virtue of their natural capabilities were suited to be leaders and rulers, while those who had lesser capabilities were better suited to be ruled. The Greeks also believed that relatively small city states were the best arrangements. Obviously both beliefs contradict the present situation in the US. So where does one man get the right to rule over another?
Joe R January 17, 2014 at 08:00 PM
Oh boo hoo, I'm a libertarian and I have to pay taxes and that's so unfair, sob, sob. Why should I have to obey speed limits, it's a violation of my freedoms, who has the authority to force me to go 25 MPH when I feel like going 80 MPH. Oh boo hoo, why can't I burn my garbage in my back yard. The state has no authority to force me to not burn my garbage, la, la, la, sob, sob ,waaa. Geezus, you libertarians live in a society, a community and yes you do have to give up a little because you are not the only one on the planet. The government gets its authority from the people, from the Constitution, from its elected representatives, from the courts. When the government goes too far, then it's up to the people to call the government to account. Taxes are the price we pay for living in a civilized advanced society. The government should be there to protect us from the robber barons and the predatory capitalists who have no compunction about polluting and despoiling the environment. I'll stop here, I could go on forever.
Jeff B January 17, 2014 at 08:41 PM
Joe R, I think some might say that the Constitution is there to protect the people against predatory government, not "predatory capitalists". I doubt that you can point to any of the latter in history that have had anything like the impact of Hitler, or Stalin, or Communism on their people. Furthermore, you could confiscate every dime made or owned by the "top 1%" and it would not come close to covering the waste and fraud in our Federal budget. Corrupt, inefficient, wasteful, and incompetent government by both parties is primarily responsible for the declining standard of living by the Middle Class, not capitalists of the world like Steve Jobs and Larry Page.
Spooner January 17, 2014 at 10:26 PM
@Robert Yates-last comment on this subject. We are a Republic. That's what was voted on and agreed to by the states. The elected political officials represent the people. Because they might not necessarily adhere to your political point of view doesn't give you the right to as they say: pick up your marbles and go home, or what we saw even during the ratification, nuances of secession, later on publicly making actual threats of secession. I could go on, but what point would it serve? As for virtue, Madison and to lesser extent Hamilton made mention of it in the Federalist Papers.
Dame Bridgid January 18, 2014 at 08:00 AM
Political science majors could you each please find a more appropriate place to air the off topic views? Ranting about the way government is formed, rather than discussing the contents of the state of the state address??? For my part; Aside from the now fired aides' snotty behavior... I have noticed a definite upswing of bipartisanship during this administration that the Governor's comments touch upon in his speech. He HAS worked hard alongside the towns that dug in after Sandy to make a comeback, regardless of political affiliation. For example; He has been one of Belmar's best supporters. His advertising campaign that the shore was "open for business" was instrumental in filling their beach & boardwalk this Summer. It meant a lot to all the people at small businesses who rely on the tourist season for their income. It saved jobs & businesses that might otherwise have folded. It looks like this type of cooperation threatens the uber political on a national level. I feel the complaints & political muckraking are now approaching what I would consider to be a witch hunt with this new national accusation. I distinctly recall Governors of BOTH political parties in a number of states who also have used public funds for ads to encourage tourism to the great benefit of their states. Without the Governor's ads' of encouragement, the tourists would not have come back as quickly to the NJ Shore, especially after all that media coverage of the terrible beach devastation. The pubic benefited substantially from those ads...Last I heard, THAT is part the Governors's job.
Robin B January 18, 2014 at 09:05 AM
George Mason University study: NJ RANKS LAST among the 50 states in Fiscal Condition. "..The five states with the lowest-ranked fiscal condition are New Jersey, Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, and California... There is a statistically significant positive correlation of 0.46 between the " fiscal condition index" of this report and state credit ratings... Pg 21 New Jersey was ranked at the bottom in budget solvency, largely due to a decrease in net assets of $6.4 billion… According to the state CAFR#, despite improvements in tax revenues in fiscal year 2012, New Jersey has still not returned to the revenue levels it achieved before the recession... New Jersey faces long-run solvency problems due in part to nearly 15 years of underfunding its state and local pensions... It has an estimated unfunded pension liability of around $25.6 billion as well as $59.3 billion in unfunded liabilities for the health benefits of retired teachers, police, firefighters, and other government workers (State Budget Crisis Task Force 2012). The bottom five performers had much weaker performance across nearly all the Indicators {relative to the top five state performers}. New Jersey and Illinois face similar problems of tax revenues that have not kept up with expenditures, use of budget practices that only appeared to balance their annual budgets, and significant debt levels as a result of decades of using bonds without being able to pay for them...." [# Consolidated Annual Financial Report] http://newjersey.watchdog.org/files/2014/01/Arnett_StateFiscalCondition_v1.pdf I have e-mailed the author with a few questions and will not comment in detail on the study. But you do not need much detail to understand that if in 2012 alone the state incurred a $6.4B loss [expenditures exceeded tax revenues] we have a LONG way to go to unwind the total unfunded liabilities which were already massive.
Mac January 18, 2014 at 09:50 AM
@Dame - if our Governor had blocked the lanes to the GWB in June or July to keep people in NJ, your argument would have more standing - however, by September, the tourist season was over and the bankrupt boardwalk was blazing
Spooner January 18, 2014 at 11:12 AM
@Dame Bridgid- okay let's get back to Christie: so explain too me how the Governor using the monies set aside for the canceled ARC tunnel were spent on projects enriching the political pockets of key Democratic Mayors and union officials, yet coming in 2015, the Governor will have to commit $billions of dollars for the new AmTrak tunnel. Christie and his administration have been using accounting gimmicks to put off the day of reckoning(Read the report posted above) Not to mention Dawn Zimmer's(Mayor of Hoboken) diary about Christie and how he helped that town after Sandy... http://hudsonreporter.com/bookmark/24413305-BREAKING-DAWN-ZIMMER-S-DIARY-Hoboken-Mayor-Zimmer-comes-forward-and-says-Sandy-aid-was-withheld-because-she-said-no-
Robin B January 18, 2014 at 11:41 AM
"Christie and his administration have been using accounting gimmicks to put off the day of reckoning (Read the report posted above).." No where in the George Mason analysis I posted does such a statement appear. The extent to which Christie has been able to unwind many prior years of such 'gimmicks', if any, is not addressed.
Spooner January 18, 2014 at 11:46 AM
@Robin Brueckner- since your one of the few on here('patch')who researches, here's a story that amplifies what I've said about using ARC money and the Pork Authority...http://www.wnyc.org/story/how-christies-men-turned-port-authority-political-piggy-bank/ PS:Read the George Mason report.
suz January 18, 2014 at 02:51 PM
FYI...the George Mason report is (if I'm not mistaken) from a report that is located in Arlington VA. A known VERY liberal county.
Robin B January 18, 2014 at 03:04 PM
As long as all states are treated uniformly in the study, the results are what they are. However, Walter E. Williams is a professor there and a wonderfully sensibly conservative. He sits in for Rush Limbaugh or used to.
Robert Yates January 20, 2014 at 10:25 AM
@Spooner: you know that I am aware of what the founder's believed the authority of government derived from: that is the consent of governed. I have already demonstrated that this concept is a canard as there is never universal consent. You stated: "Because they might not necessarily adhere to your political point of view doesn't give you the right to as they say: pick up your marbles and go home? I say: why is that? Where do you get the moral authority to tell me that I must be ruled? Sorry, I still have not heard a reasonable explanation as to why you think this is your prerogative. Everything governments do private citizens in voluntary association with one another can also do. I see no reason for the theft and violence that is inseparable from government. @Joe R: for some reason you think government is imbued with a special capacity for goodness and wisdom and that private citizens would run wild without the government. History nor reality supports this claim, so I will leave it at that with you. You are hopelessly deferential to proven group of scallywags. @Dame Bridget: sorry I dd not know you were the one who made the rules as to the proper topics of discussion on any given patch article.

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