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Right? Yes…..Right Wing? Not Really.

Since all the questionable activity here in Belmar has been the topic of a lot of discussion and reportage, the mayor has taken the tack of referring to these pages as a “right wing blog”.  I guess he feels it will work for him politically to dismiss his critics as just a bunch of disgruntled right-wingers, but my long-time readers (which would include the mayor) know that my leanings are libertarian and I have a number of important differences with the traditional right.

This is also not an attack-Matt blog.

When I started this blog Ken Pringle was mayor.  If you check the archives, my writings then were almost entirely about policy and the philosophy of government with an emphasis on government at the local level.  Pringle and I obviously have a significant disagreement about the proper role of the government and I strongly criticized  many of his actions and policies.  But he wasn’t making the kind of headlines that our current mayor is making.  I can’t just ignore them.

The mayor and his supporters need to understand that his critics didn’t make this mess.  We just read about it in the papers.  The Press, the Patch, the Star, and the Ledger are hardly what I’d call “right-wing” publications.  No other town affected by Sandy has had these kinds of stories coming out about them.  And it wasn’t right-wingers (or libertarians, for that matter) that  put in the state ethics law this passage:

No local government officer or employee or member of his immediate family shall have an interest in a business organization or engage in any business, transaction, or professional activity, which is in substantial conflict with the proper discharge of his duties in the public interest.”

The truth is that our mayor laid this big old stink bomb on us and is singularly responsible for all the embarrassment and divisiveness we’ve seen as a result.  He is also harming the credibility and reputations of those near him.  They didn’t even get any of the money but they’re forced to defend all this.  If it were me I would be mad as hell.

So there is little they can do but declare repeatedly what a wonderful wonderful wonderful wonderful company Ashbritt is.  “The Cadillac of clean-up firms!”  To them I ask:  Has any public official anywhere, ever, said  “Gee, I wish we had hired AshBritt!” ?


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