Cape Gazette
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Politics

Hares Corner good news for us, bad news for others

By Don Flood | Feb 28, 2012

Delaware’s congressional delegation last week announced it had persuaded the U.S. Postal Service to keep open the processing center at Hares Corner.

This is good news for Delaware. Keeping the center open will save 500 jobs. There’s even a possibility that more jobs could be coming to Hares Corner, if some jobs are moved from Maryland. (Which naturally would be bitterly opposed by the Maryland congressional delegation.)

It’s also a terrific example of why it’s so difficult to cut government spending. The closing of Hares Corner was to be part of a nationwide three-year plan to save $15 billion.

People want the post office to cut costs because they fear that taxpayers will wind up footing the bill. But they will complain to their legislators if it means cutting Saturday delivery, raising the cost of stamps and, especially, the loss of local jobs and post offices.

It will be interesting to see how much of the proposed cutbacks Congress will actually allow. People grumble about big government, but if you’re looking for the reason, try looking in the mirror.

In a statement about the Hares Corner site, Sen. Tom Carper said, “The loss of the First State's only mail processing and distribution facility would have put our state at a competitive disadvantage, potentially driving business away from Delaware and forcing mail from all parts of the state - including Sussex County - to travel to southern New Jersey for processing.” Thank goodness our Sussex County mail won’t be covered with dirty New Jersey fingerprints!

What would Lincoln do?
The truth is, we don’t know.

But that doesn’t stop people from claiming that Abraham Lincoln or some other Mr. Revered Dead Statesman would support their political views. Republicans tend to go with Lincoln, Democrats with Jefferson. Either way, it’s intellectually lazy.

At the recent Lincoln Day Dinner, Glen Urquhart, who is competing with Ernesto Lopez to be the Republican nominee for the Senate 6th District seat, was quoted saying, “Threats to our liberty are with us again today.

Abe Lincoln would urge us to free ourselves from bondage to big government.”

Perhaps, but it’s debatable.

Lincoln, after all, used every lever of federal power to hold the Union together, including the sending of federal troops to Delaware to monitor an election.

For this and other acts, he was accused of being a dictator. (Interestingly enough, the Daily Paul, a website “inspired by Ron Paul,” a Republican candidate for president, still refers to Lincoln as a “ruthless dictator.”)

Even more striking, Lincoln and Republicans favored - and passed - legislation that would today be considered governmental intrusion into the marketplace.

Encyclopedia.com says Lincoln “stood as a principled opponent of slavery's extension into the territories and he also stood with other economic interests that the Whigs had once favored and the Republican Party now represented: protective tariffs, a homestead law, federal land grants for higher education, federal sponsorship of internal improvements, and, most importantly, federal aid for a transcontinental railroad.”

In other words, a whole lotta government spending - and bailouts. (The idea was that the money raised by the tariffs would help pay for the internal improvements.)

But does that mean Lincoln would have favored bailing out GM and Chrysler? Who knows?

Divine endorsements don’t always pan out
Rick Santorum’s wife is the latest in a Republican primary field claiming they were called by God to run for president.


Last week she said her husband’s rise in the polls reflected “God’s will.”

Other candidates who have claimed divine support include former front-runners Herman Cain, Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry. All said God supported their candidacy and all quickly fell afoul of fickle primary voters. Is it any wonder primary voters are confused if the Almighty himself can’t seem to make up his mind?

Delaware’s primary will be held April 24. In his informal update, Republican Chairman John Sigler said Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul have qualified to be on the ballot and that he expects Rick Santorum to meet the deadline. Perhaps Delaware Republicans will provide some clarity to the race.

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