Agrees with cynical side
Unfortunately, Mr. Dobbs, I am convinced that the cynical side of yourself that you referred to in your column on Dec. 7 is the side of you that is more realistic about the so-called public hearings on budget cuts in the state.
My own perspective is that Gov. Patrick has already made his decisions and unless the legislature somehow overrides those decisions, the cuts will stand as the Governor has suggested. The idea of sending various legislative appointees out to these meetings is just what you referenced in your column political theater and nothing more. The Governor has taken himself out of the picture and out of the reach of the public on the budget cuts, although I wouldn't view these public hearings any differently if he actually appeared at one of them himself.
The Social Security freeze set the tone for the lack of caring and concern for the citizens at the federal level and this was followed by the attack on our veterans with the ridiculous cuts at the Soldiers Home. I'm curious to know how much was or will be cut from human services, since that population is also an easy target. Here's another one to consider. The last time I checked, tourism in Massachusetts produced more tax dollars than almost any other industry and yet the Governor has seen fit to slash that budget by a phenomenal percentage. That makes a lot of sense to me. Let's cut in places that generate substantial tax dollars. Maybe we should make more cuts in education and health services while we're at it, since many of the people who benefit from such services can't contribute much money to the Governor's campaign treasury.
Obviously, the Governor is not going to recommend any cuts that would impact on his financial supporters.
I think that people who want to air their feelings should attend the public hearings, but should not expect the Governor to change anything. Only our legislators can make the changes and let's hope that they will do that in a reasonable manner, understanding that most people would agree that spending has to be cut, but not at the expense of those who are currently targeted by the Governor.
Allen G. Zippin