Wednesday, November 30, 2011

It's Not You, It's Me.

It is unfortunate that John Morony, a member of the Queen Anne's County Republican Central Committee, and Sharon Carrick, a former chairperson of that same committee, found it appropriate recently to personally attack a sitting Republican County Commissioner in the pages of the local newspapers.

Ms. Carrick and Mr. Morony clearly illustrated what so many think is wrong with politics in America today; namely, an obsession with partisanship that mandates jack-booted adherence to the party line, no matter how hypocritical that party line might be. When it suits them, Ms. Carrick and Mr. Morony profess their love for limited government and low taxes, but on the other hand (and often in the same breath) support policies that lead directly and clearly to bigger government and more taxes.

For Ms. Carrick and Mr. Morony, Martin O'Malley is a villain with malicious motivations. Not content to thoughtfully disagree, Carrick and Morony seek to denigrate all of his positions, and anyone who might find some good in his ideas. Instead of debating the merits of an issue, they reflexively resort to personal attack, caring little about the message, aiming only for the messenger. This obsession with partisan purity is the reason why leadership in the United States has been replaced with ambition and brinkmanship.

Continuing to scatter development across the landscape is an unwise use of resources. As a member of the Task Force on Government Sustainability, I saw first hand what our quickly increasing population (Queen Anne's County was the fastest growing county in Maryland from 2000-2010) did to the county's budget. More people demand more government services, which means more government. If you count yourself a small government, low taxes conservative, and you support wanton and unfettered development across the countryside, you are sowing the very seeds with which government and taxes will inevitably and unarguably grow, an untenable dichotomy that doesn't bother party officials like Carrick and Morony.

Commissioner David Dunmyer has put more earnest time, effort and energy into his job as county commissioner than any of his colleagues, without exception. His positions are not arrived at through a partisan filter, but rather by an idealism that seeks to do what is best for our county today and in the future. Like most people that I meet, I do not agree with anyone all of the time, and certainly not a politician. The best we can hope for are elected leaders that keep an open mind and spend time actually thinking about the implications of the policies they champion. On this rubric alone, we in Queen Anne's County would do well to have five David Dunmyers.

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