Baroukh: Tough Choices Require Early Action
The decision by the Federal Reserve Board to take unprecedented action last week with regard to the Nation’s economy is valuable to place in context just how economically challenging the next several years will be, not only for the Country, but also for the City of Falls Church. The City is not immune to the economic difficulties facing localities throughout the Nation.
Over the past several years, City taxpayers have paid a price for the poor economic conditions affecting our area. Taxes have risen and services have been cut. Exacerbating the situation have been occasions when the City failed to accurately measure lower revenues and higher expenses, resulting in last minute adjustments.
Our citizens have born this burden – a real testament to their positive nature and perseverance. But we cannot assume that City residents will continue to endure an inefficient budget process, nor should they. Currently, our budget process is one in which the Council provides the City Manager with little guidance to help frame the budget prior to his recommendations to the City Council in March.
This year, I believe it’s critical to accelerate the budget process to provide additional guidance to the City Manager earlier in the process than past councils have done. This is critical to allow the City Manager more time to balance the City’s needs with anticipated revenues and provide the community earlier opportunities to comment on such things as service levels, tax rates, and capital planning needs. Failure by the Council to provide early guidance to the City Manager may result in a greater-than-necessary tax increase and unplanned last minute cuts in City services.
At the Council’s retreat in September, the need for early budget guidance was discussed. As we work through the budget process, I welcome and request input from citizens. In the weeks ahead, the Council and all the agencies of the city government must work together-cooperatively-to do what is best for the citizens for the long term. We must ensure that budget decisions are thorough and rigorous and provide for the long-term sustainability of our City.
Nader Baroukh, Mayor
City of Falls Church
The ‘Little City’ Exists for Its Superior Schools
Once again the City Council has forgotten that without our school system there is little reason for Falls Church to exist as a separate entity. It is telling that our Mayor seems not to realize that it is the “extras,” music, art, sports, that is one of the real reasons the Falls Church schools remain excellent. School is more than test scores and grades.
Everyone of us benefited from a public school education and it is our civic responsibility to support the next generation. It would be better to end all salaries and stipends to the Mayor and Council than cut one dime from the school system’s budget – especially as enrollment grows. If we must pay taxes to support our schools – that is the cost of living in America, we support the next generation and give them the opportunities we already enjoyed.
Hopefully the School Board will remain strong and resist any pressure to hurt the future of our children.
Teaching Good Choices Beats Outlawing K-2
I felt compelled to write in response to the article “K-2 Furor in F.C. Draws School Board Appeal to Outlaw Drug”. The article seems to convey that the new synthetic drug poses great harm to our city’s youth, even though it is less harmful than most drugs that already exist, including the most prevent drug, alcohol.
Furthermore, I find it disheartening that the Falls Church News-Press implies that the presence of a drug will result in its immediate use by the city’s teenagers.
In defense of my age group, I feel obligated to point out as the Falls Church Police’s School Resource Officer Steve Rau was quoted in the article as saying that “he has received no reports of due of K2 on the George Mason High or Henderson Middle School facilities”. Therefore, fearful tone of the article is unjustified.
Instead of attempting to scare parents about what this drug may do to their children, simply remind them that if they are very concerned about their children using the drug as the article also implies, then they should teach their kids to make good life decisions regarding the use of drugs and alcohol. That will be vastly more effective than depending on the government to completely prevent the availability of drugs to their teenagers as they will inevitably encounter drugs during the course of their lives.
George Mason High School Student
‘Lock Step’ Were Liberals for ‘Obamacare’
Nick Benton’s column on the elections reflects the thoughts of someone totally disassociated from reality.
Benton demands that all media parrot the partisan views of the left and condemns Fox News for eschewing liberal talking points. What makes this independence even more painful to the left is the fact that Fox is the most popular source of cable news.
In addition, the liberal elected officials were the ones marching in lock step in casting votes to enact the Obama agenda. The American people gathered at rallies, wrote letters, and made calls trying to prevent Obamacare. They cast their votes in Virginia and New Jersey to announce their strong opposition to Obama’s vision.
The election to fill Senator Kennedy’s seat became a referendum on Obamacare, and even liberal Massachusetts gave it a thumbs down. Yet, the authoritarian left ignored the voice of the American people to impose its will.
As for massive funding to influence the elections, Politico reports that the Democrats and their groups outspent the Republicans and their groups by $856 million to $677 million.
Benton also works in the effete charge of racism. Yet we saw conservatives cheering the election of two black Americans to Congress in the South, a cuban American to the Senate, and one indian American and two Hispanics to governorships.
If you want an example of prejudice, you need to look no further than the White House where Obama is probably the most bigoted President since Andrew Jackson. Obama found his religion in the hate-filled gutter that was Jeremiah Wright’s church. And Obama let slip his disdain for white Americans who have not joined the lofty liberal elite (cling to guns and religion).
Wall Street’s $ Goes More to Democrats
Repeating a false statement many times does not magically make the false statement true. Repeating the statement that evil Wall Street money supports conservatives, does not make it so. Wall Street money goes far more to the liberal candidates than conservative and in fact, they overwhelmingly supported President Obama in 2008.
In fact, in the midst of the conservative landslide last week, the combination of labor unions, Wall Street and convicted felon money from George Soros totaled again more than the total conservatives gave to their candidates. So, a thoughtful editor might ask, why did the conservatives sweep aside so many liberals? Instead, he engages in another wild-eyed conspiracy-laden diatribe against conservatives in his newspaper. Consider: people are free to listen to left wing and right wing radio, read publications from the many right and left wing think-tanks.
In fact,a thoughtful editor might ask, what was it that got the president elected and the Democrat landslide in Congress in 2008 and what changed in 2010? The right wing will always vote with the right and the left wing with the left. That is a given. It is the great American independent, the middle of the roaders, who elected President Obama. They also swept aside many Republican lawmakers in 2006 and 2008. Was it Senator Obama’s left wing policies that attracted them? I don’t think so. It was his statements that he would take a scalpel to the federal budget, cut taxes and have a more robust war on terror.
It is the huge increase in the deficit, increased pork, government takeover of health care, car companies and many other things that the great American independents just simply don’t like that gave them buyers’ remorse. Good riddance to the 2006 big-spending Republicans and good riddance to the 2010 big spending Democrats.
The editor of the FCNP is a liberal. That is fine. But sitting in your echo chamber and repeating only what the left wing has to say, wild eyed too, sometimes makes you look foolish.
The spanking the liberals got last week was deserved and predictable if one just thinks outside one’s own box, even just a little. It is not a conspiracy any more than the left winning the 2006 and 2008 elections. It is the middle acting, as it always does, like the middle.
Members of the left open their eyes and see bigotry, money corrupting the political process, and the will of the people overridden by special interests. They see all of this because they are facing a mirror.Paul FluscheFalls Church
Letters to the Editor may be submitted to [email protected] or via our online form here. Letters should be limited to 350 words and may be edited for content, clarity and length. To view the FCNP’s letter and submission policy, please click here.