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O’Malley World: Welcome to the Grand Delusion

According to Psychology Today, themes of delusion come in various forms. There’s the erotomanic type, where the affected believes that another person of a higher social standing is in love with the individual – as in, I’m not sure why Kate Upton got the restraining order because her and I will soon marry.

There’s also the persecutory/paranoid type – where the deluded believes everyone is out to “get them,” and the somatic type, where the distressed believes they are experiencing bodily dysfunctions or physical sensations such as insects crawling on or under the skin.
In college we simply called the latter: ‘excellent acid, dude.’

Perhaps the most recognizable type – at least for those who have lived in Maryland under Martin O’Malley’s governorship – is the grandiose variety, an affliction where the deluded believes they possess great (but unrecognized) talent or insight, limitless knowledge, power and elevated self-worth.

Last Thursday, Gov. O’Fallacy sermonized before the Center for American Progress (CAP) and spoke of Maryland becoming a successful, progressive model of a state thanks to his policies – policies that he claimed we’re beneficial to the middle class.

Feel free to take a moment to quell your uncontrollable laughter and to mop up whatever beverage you just shot from your nostrils.

Never mind the irony involved given a think tank would be interested in the bull skeet coming from a governor who has never had an original thought during his entire political career – well, save for that Constitution-trampling illegal arrest thing while he was mayor of Crabtown.

In his speech, O’Malley hyped his victories in steering the sycophant General Assembly to rally-round his preferred stance on social policies, i.e. eliminating the death penalty, butchering the 2nd Amendment, and pandering – via expanded entitlements – to those here illegally.
The issues that serve as the pink slime in the red meat one needs to throw at the hard left in order to corner the patchouli vote in a presidential primary.

In his 2005 award-winning book, “Bullsh*t”, author Harry Frankfurt made the case that those who spread bovine excrement do so – especially the successful spreaders – because they are not concerned about whether or not anything they say is true.
Frankfurt, a philosopher, concludes that excessive indulgence in bull shoveling undermines the BS-ers ability to tell the truth in a way that lying does not. Liars, he writes, at least acknowledge that it matters what is true.

When Gov. O’Malley speaks – as in his remarks to the think tank gathering – facts never seem to matter.

The governor likes to claim that he has presided over billions of dollars in spending cuts while reality finds the state budget has grown by 30-percent during his tenure.

A blatant lie or just plain bull cookies?

Also in O’Malley’s bag of clichés and slogans are assertions that he has breathed new life into the Maryland business corpse; left for dead thanks to the policies of George Bush, Bob Ehrlich and every Republican who has ever been elected to any office anywhere.
“For the second year in a row,” O’Malley told the CAP audience, “the US Chamber of Commerce ranked Maryland #1 in innovation and entrepreneurship.”
That Chamber report also noted that Maryland’s success stems from its proximity to Washington, D.C. and the giant federal teat that nourishes academic research and development, cyber security and federal and military operations.

In April, Maryland shed 6,200 jobs in the private sector while government agencies filled 2,400 positions. Martin O’Malley doesn’t ride coattails, he prefers latching on to the udders.
Or, as Frankfurt describes it, bull puckey and the related concept of humbug are distinct from lying.

A liar can’t ignore numbers – numbers such as those provided by the Tax Foundation’s 2013 report that finds Maryland as the 41st ranked state in a study of congenial business climates.
But a BS-er can – and will – most certainly gloss over his state’s ranking as the 40th worst for property taxes, 45th worst for individual income tax; and 46th worst for unemployment insurance tax.

“When Lt. Governor Brown and I took office in January 2007,” the King-of-Sling told CAP, “Maryland was coming off of the same sort of ‘never-mind-the-math’ decision-making that got our country into its current fiscal and economic predicaments.”

Paying no mind to mathematics is a subject with which this governor is all-too-familiar, beginning with a 39th overall ranking when it comes to the cost of doing business in this state and an addition to Moody’s ‘watch list’ due to the state’s over-reliance on federal spending.
“We have used the pressure of sinking revenues to make government more efficient and effective,” the governor continued his amusing interpretation of reality. “We have further targeted our limited resources on policies that work and deliver results.”

Limited resources, as in state government is having to muddle by on less revenue? First, the O’Malley administration’s fiscal policies have helped drive – according to the Change Maryland group – more than 6,500 small businesses out of state or out of existence; forced nearly 31,000 residents to run for the borders; and whittled the number of Fortune 500 companies headquartered here down to three.

For comparison, both Virginia and Pennsylvania boast a couple dozen.

Yet, even with all of that revenue disappearing into the crony-rewarding, windmill-powered air, Martin O’Malley has managed to replenish the stream of fiscal irresponsibility through 40 (forty!) – tax increases that will – by 2018 – cost Marylanders an additional $20 billion.
Which exposes another bit of barnyard flop this governor likes to shovel – that his policies have served to “strengthen our middle class, and expand middle class opportunity.”

Change Maryland notes that the cumulative tax burden for the eight O’Malley years will reach $9.5 billion, and that the most dramatic spike is due to the phasing in of the recently passed 86-percent increase in the gasoline tax and other transportation-related levies.
There is no bigger slap in the face and punch to the wallet for middle class families than a gas tax; it affects not only energy costs, but the price of groceries, goods and every other aspect of household budgets.

Add increases in the sales tax, alcohol and cigarette taxes, tolls, automobile registration fees, increased mass transit rates, and even a hike on your gas & electric bill to pay for wind farms and the last thing this governor should be able to claim is being a friend of the middle class.
Bullsh*t, author Frankfurt determined, is defined not so much by the end product as by the process by which it is created.

From ignoring the truth about a failed education system (the Guv’nuh likes to flaunt the number one public school ranking while ignoring that in just one county – Montgomery – 60-percent of students failed both the geometry and algebra final exams) to fudging/finagling the numbers on his laughable StateStat fiasco (where legislative audits have proved that Maryland government is as transparent as Patapsco River water), Gov. Martin O’Malley isn’t so much delusional as he is a prototypical spreader of pasture pastries.
Pretty simple diagnosis, actually: if this governor cut state spending to the degree he alleges, then why the need to burden the citizenry with 40 new taxes?

The once great state of Maryland has been saddled with a governor that has but one solution to every problem: confiscate more taxpayer dollars.
Oh, and use bullsh*t terms like “investment,” because investing other people’s money is the easiest gamble of them all.

The curtain of BS behind which this governor hides also conceals income tax hikes on individuals making more than $100,000, a prison system that effectively allowed the inmates to run the asylum, a huge performance gap between students in ‘poor’ public schools and their peers in affluent neighborhoods, the hijacking of property rights, ignoring traffic camera failure and abuse, misuse and manipulation of hundreds of millions of transportation fund dollars and is just as much a blindly partisan hack as the Republicans he accuses of the same behavior.

“Our parents’ generation grew accustomed to a way of leadership that was ideological,” O’Malley concluded in his CAP speech. “But the ideology of the past no longer serves the challenges of these rapidly changing times.”
But if you listen to this governor speak you’ll quickly hear that being an impractical idealist has served his exaggerations and aspirations quite well.

“Bullsh*t,” Frankfurt summarized, “is a greater enemy of the truth than lies.”

And in Maryland, a delusional bullsh*tter is the most dangerous enemy of them all.

Categories: Budget and Finance, Business Climate, Must Read, Opinion, Taxes, Transparency
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