Impeach Christie

The apology is ongoing.  For me it is not working.  We are unlikely to get a sex scandal so bridge-gate should do it and here are my three reasons that Christie needs to go:

1. Governor Christie does not need to be responsible for the actions of 65,000 people.  He needs to be responsible for the actions of the handfuls of people he chose to advise him and if he has been working with those people for years then not recognizing their character is unforgivable and asserting as much ingenuous.

2. How many other acts of retribution were carried out by the Christie cabal for which there are no smoking-gun emails?

3. He has done an awful job as governor.

  • Property tax reform consisted of a cap full of holes and a silly 50-question take-home test for localities that they are allowed to grade themselves.
  • Pension reform consisted of an arbitrary COLA elimination, minor tweaks affecting only new-hires, and continued underfunding.
  • He may have helped get some transparency in government but when malfeasance is discovered NOTHING GETS DONE!

For the vast majority of the general public (i.e. those not on the Christie gravy train) he will not be missed.

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PS: Perhaps they needed more time to make up their game plan but how is not having the mayor of Fort Lee on your radar screen the mysterious part of this?  Is Christie saying that this retribution would have made perfect sense to him if it was against someone who was on his radar screen?

26 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Anonymous on January 9, 2014 at 2:19 pm

    Tough Love trusted Christie. I told her there was no hope no matter who gets elected. When will she face reality in NJ.

    Reply

    • Posted by Tough Love on January 9, 2014 at 3:13 pm

      While you very well may be correct that (short of massive reductions in the pensions/benefits promised NJ’s current & retired Public Sector workers) there is no hope for NJ (or it’s taxpayers), Gov. Christie has done MORE than anyone else would have with the very limited financial options.

      Who else would have stood up to the insatiably greedy (and bullying) NJ Public Sector Unions?

      Reply

  2. Posted by bpaterson on January 9, 2014 at 2:31 pm

    and you come to your conclusion now about our elected officials who have been screwing the taxpayers for the last 20 years?

    usually if one wants some kind of upset, they should at least suggest an alternative or recognize the alternative. So we get kim?…and not the kardashian.

    Reply

  3. Posted by brooklyn91941 on January 9, 2014 at 3:45 pm

    We do not need a governor whose staff thinks it’s appropriate to take political retribution against opponents. The fact that he dismissed these allegations without investigation makes me think that this type of behavior is permitted, and maybe even promoted. There are several examples of his or his staff’s retribution tactics against enemies or opponents, I agree with John, Christie should take the ultimate responsibility and resign. He never tackled the state’s most pressing issue, underfunded pensions. If that discussion is ever brought to the public, he would definitely be thrown out.

    One more point, what political favors did he mete out to political surporters?

    Reply

    • Posted by Tough Love on January 9, 2014 at 4:55 pm

      The ROOT CAUSE of the problem is the granting of excessive benefits inthe first place..

      They are simply too large to fully “fund”them. They must be reduced,and for CURRENT,not just new workers…and eliminating the COLAs is only a very small part of the needed reductions.

      Reply

  4. Posted by skip3house on January 9, 2014 at 3:55 pm

    Just a bit in defense? Those wonderful Town Hall meetings were manipulated by Christie supporters to invite known Republicans first, and set aside strategic seats for them. Christie’s fault?

    Reply

  5. Posted by Javagold on January 9, 2014 at 10:01 pm

    I’ve been trying. Yelling. To wake you people up. Government is the problem. Not R or D. They are the same. They are takers. They are leeches. They are pigs. They are a monopoly of force. Remove yourself from the entire sick crony ponzi. Or you deserve what is coming. And this goes for you union county watchdogs. Outside the box. Otherwise I will be watching the next 50 years of you complaining as they put each one of you six feet under. Dead and accomplished NOTHING.
    And I am very sympathetic to your fight against the corruption. But enough is enough.
    ANARCHO-CAPITALISM

    Reply

    • Posted by bpaterson on January 13, 2014 at 3:55 pm

      java, actually the watchdogs have accomplished a lot. Thanks to theirs and the publics letters to authorities, hack prosecutor romankow-gone! senator lesniak’s newphew Geo Devanney county manager-forced into retirement at 49, self-serving UCIA director and dem county chair-forced into retirement, plus there are so many out there in the public now informed of the UC govt corrupted system that councils in the county towns want to seceded or hold back county taxes.

      Of course its a huge effort. Think about trying to change an entrenched kleptocracy in a county level govt out of reach of the commoner. Maybe the watchdogs have another 30 names on the hit list and it certainly is an uphill battle, at least one pled guilty the other month, but look at the composite of the freeholders now, the near majority of board made of toothless, and clueless freeholders that don’t really have skin in the game or want to play political hardball 24/7. The complexity of the board is changing.

      The watchdogs, hounding the freeholders and the UC govt with what they are exposing, has put a damper on the other criminal politicians that may have been in the bull pen waiting to step up to be freeholder, and with such excess baggage they are being afraid of being exposed. So we get the tepid ones sitting there now mixed in with the heavy hitting corrupted ones.

      I’d say the watchdogs did a pretty good job, with their investigations and their OPRAs . And that’s why I donate $$$$$ to them annually and support and interface with them.

      Reply

  6. Posted by devilfish622@gmail.com on January 9, 2014 at 11:07 pm

    Here’s what.

    Did the Governor drive off a bridge and leave his “companion” to die ala Ted Kennedy?

    No.

    In democrats eyes, or at least in Mass., that is honorable and deserving of “Ted Kennedy’s seat.”

    Democrats should LOVE this and stand behind Christie like they did with the drunk Ted Kennedy (D).

    I believe CC didn’t know about the child-like stunts his staff was playing. At least Christie took questions and answered them. Unlike the clown in White House.

    That said, Christie should resign:

    1. For never investigating why The County Watchers were paid a visit by the NJ Treasury Department.

    2. For being a RINO.

    Reply

    • That seems to be the official ‘FoxNews’ line (the top part before the Christie should resign) but it’s nonsensical.

      If you want to downplay this bridge scandal by comparing it things that happened in Benghazi or the NSA or Iraq of Auschwitz then fine – worry about those and leave us alone. But some of us really care when our government works actively to make our lives harder especially as hard as it is to live in New Jersey when your government isn’t out to get you (openly).

      There’s also the idiocy of Christies’ statement that I haven’t seen anyone catch yet: he fires his aide because she lied to him? Really? He’s OK with the blatant abuse of power? Is he telling us that if she confessed right away she would still be on the job?

      Reply

      • Posted by bpaterson on January 13, 2014 at 3:58 pm

        ok,JB1, he resigns. Care to conjecture on the unfolding of next year?

        Reply

        • Anything has to be better than what we have now: all the corruption (and possibly more) that we have historically been put through but now with the sanctimonious posturings that we have reform.

          I don’t see Christie surviving this. His property tax and pension reforms have been abysmal failures so it’s not as if he has any accomplishment to point to that would salvage his crooked administration. I give it two months until he makes his announcement about wanting to spend more time with his lawyers.

          Reply

          • Posted by Tough Love on January 14, 2014 at 1:30 am

            John, I’m betting Christie will survive this (unless evidence comes forth that he knew in advance about the Planned lane closing in Fort lee) …. and thrive.

            He’s the consummate politician, and real MEANINGFUL accomplishments is rarely a prerequisite for higher office.

  7. Posted by Javagold on January 10, 2014 at 1:14 am

    He said alot of strange things.
    1. He hasn’t slept for a couple of nights. (But just found out yesterday morning).
    2. She was fired for lying to him.(but not for closing down GWB Lanes)
    3. He doesn’t remember ft. Lee mayor. So that proves to him, they were not our for revenge. (As if he knew him , revenge would have been an option).

    Reply

    • Posted by skip3house on January 14, 2014 at 3:28 am

      “Follow the Money’. What is this new story of a $billion$ dollar investment project at the NJ foot of the GWBridge, all in Fort Lee?

      Reply

  8. @ John. You wrote “Pension reform consisted of an arbitrary COLA elimination, minor tweaks affecting only new-hires, and continued underfunding.”

    1)COLA is a big deal. Retirees living on fixed incomes will find it harder and harder to survive as cost of living increases.

    2) Minor tweeks affecting only new hires?? That is inaccurate. Current workers have to pay more into their pensions now. For example NJ firefighter/police were already paying the highest in the country at 8% , that has been shifted to 10.5%. The new hires have to pay this as well and they have to work 5 yrs longer for 5% less.

    3) Police and Fire never stopped making their contributions all thru the Whittman years even when she said it is ok to. In fact. Police and fire unions sent an official letter to WHittman making the argument that not only will we not stop paying in (just because the economy was so great ) but the state should continue as well.
    Whittman raided the pension funds to balance NJ state budget and win a second term.

    Reply

    • Fred,

      You are correct in that the COLA elimination is a big deal which is why it had to be done illegally and is being challenged in court later this month.

      However everything else was a tweak including the higher employee contributions. Assuming payroll of about $20 billion of those contributing to their pensions, 1% of that comes to $200,000 million a year when we have about $10 Billion a year being paid out in benefits each year, and that number is rising.

      The truth is that this plan has been horribly undervalued due to political necessities and reality has intruded.

      Reply

      • You said in your post that the tweaks were ONLY to New-Hires. You didnt mention that active members are now paying higher contributions. It was an omission of fact that needs to be known because you can’t have a proper argument without all the facts.

        If I may ask you to explain your figures for me again that would be helpful. You are saying that Payroll for public workers is about 20 billion a year? and that 1% of that is 200 million?
        So you are saying that the pension fund brings in 200 million a yr but pays out 10 billion in benefits??

        Reply

        • I’m saying that even if employees put in 40% of their salaries it wouldn’t cover the benefits being accrued.

          The best way to look at this is by checking out what’s going in and what’s going out of these plans. As of 6/30/12, the latest valuation date:
          https://burypensions.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/njpensions63012.pdf
          That’s $1.83 billion coming from employees, $1.76 billion coming from taxpayers, and $8.3 billion being paid out to retirees. Getting rid of the COLA prevented that $8.3 billion from having percentage increases applied to it but the number of new retirees (with higher pensions) is dwarfing the number of those dying (who had lower pensions).

          Reply

          • Thanks , good chart. Except you have nothing on there about interest gained and from returns in investments.
            What do those numbers look like?

          • Since going on 40% of the money is in ‘alternative’ investments they pretty much make up their own numbers as to what the trust is worth.
            They say $76 billion as of 10/31/13 with over 60% in ‘Global Growth’:
            http://www.state.nj.us/treasury/doinvest/

            Public pensions do whatever they can to assume that investment growth looks good since that means less money they ‘have’ to put in and with a bigger percentage of the fund having to pay current retirees they won’t be able to invest for the long-term since there won’t be one. The numbers to look at are what is going in and what is going out. Here are those numbers taken from the 6/30/2000 valuation:
            https://burypensions.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/njpensions2000.pdf

          • Another chart where you don’t show the return on investments. Those are crucial numbers!
            Before the economic collapse the funds were 100 % despite the lack of State contributions (holidays).
            After the collapse Police and Fire went to 50%. Shortly thereafter it went to 70% and now it is just under 80%.
            With proper investing and a stock market at record levels the pension can reach 90% and then 100 % in no time.

          • U.S. state and local-government pension investments gained the most in two years in fiscal 2013, overshadowed by intensifying scrutiny of underfunded municipal-retirement plans following Detroit’s record bankruptcy.

            Public pensions booked a median gain of 12.4 percent for the 12 months through June, powered by a surge in U.S. stock prices to a record, Wilshire Associates said today in a report. The funds chalked up an annualized three-year median return of 11.4 percent while their assets surpassed a pre-recession peak to reach $2.9 trillion, according to U.S. Census Bureau figures.
            http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-08-06/public-pensions-up-12-get-most-in-2-years-as-stocks-soar.html

          • Posted by Jomama on January 23, 2014 at 2:32 pm

            There is another factor. The average age of a retiree has gone up in the last 3 years. I expect that will continue as workers become concerned about the COLA.

  9. Best anyone could hope for would be a pastrami hero scandal.

    Reply

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