Democrats, Democrats everywhere but not a drop to drink.

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Rabecka Cordell picks up a case of bottled water outside the fire station in Flint, Mich. “We both have lead poisoning,” said Cordell. She says she has leukemia and her son has learning and speech disabilities. She will not even bathe in Flint water and won’t wash her son in it. (AP photo)

Rabecka Cordell picks up a case of bottled water outside the fire station in Flint, Mich. “We both have lead poisoning,” said Cordell. She says she has leukemia and her son has learning and speech disabilities. (AP photo)

Listen To You Tell Me Texas Friday 1/22/16

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I have two questions. First: when is the last time you had even the slightest concern about filling a glass with water from your kitchen sink and drinking it?

Second: can you name a city in America under Republican leadership that is broke and dysfunctional?

If your answers to question number one is, “never” and your answer to question number two is, “no,” here’s a third question. Can you name any cities under Democrat control that are broke and dysfunctional?

The answer to that question should come more easily to mind. Choices include Detroit, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Newark and now, as we are hearing recently, Flint, Michigan.

Flint, Michigan is one of the most liberal cities in America. Even though under its current city charter the office of mayor is officially non-partisan, the fact is that Democrats have had monopoly control of local government in Flint for decades. The last Republican mayor of Flint left office in 1975.

Democratic stewardship of the city has not yielded good results. The city is so financially desolate that the governor of Michigan, for the second time since 2002, appointed an emergency manager to operate in place of the local elected government.

To be fair to Flint, it was devastated in the 1980s by the disinvestment of General Motors. Auto manufacturing employment in Flint fell from over 80,000 to fewer than 8,000 workers. But it’s not entirely clear as to whether GM’s departure hastened a rise in crime and corruption in Flint or whether crime and corruption hastened GM’s departure.

Either way, when a major employer abandons a city, it calls for the best possible civic leadership and Flint hasn’t had it. Instead, in recent years, Flint has earned such dubious honors as being named “Most Dangerous City in America” by the magazine Business Insider, which compiled statistics from the FBI.

All of this leads us to the news that the public water supply in Flint is dangerously contaminated with lead. In 2014, Flint stopped buying treated water from Detroit as a cost-cutting move and instead started tapping the Flint River. However, river water is corrosive and the city did not treat the water sufficiently to keep it from leaching lead out of older pipes.

Flint residents began complaining about bad tasting water almost immediately but for 18 months they were assured by city officials – who had done no valid testing – that the water was safe. Thus without their knowing it, Flint residents began drinking and bathing in dangerously contaminated water.

Democrats everywhere want you to believe that government is good, that government has your best interests at heart, that government knows best and that government is done best under Democrats. But when it came to that most basic of municipal services – delivering safe water – the Democrats running Flint, Michigan failed and in so doing, put citizens in danger.

And yet, actual experience aside, Democrats like Hillary Clinton say with a straight face that they should control the entirety of the nation’s health care.

Paul Gleiser

Paul L. Gleiser is president of Gleiser Communications, LLC, licensee of radio stations KTBB 97.5 FM/AM600, 92.1 The Team FM & KYZS in Tyler-Longview, Texas.

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11 Responses

  1. Craig Gibson says:

    Mr. Gleiser,

    You should tell the whole truth about the situation in Flint concerning its water. The Republican governor appointed an “emergency manager” to take over governance of Flint; in effect, this meant that the people that were elected by its citizens had no power to make decisions. The most crucial decision was to obtain water from the Flint river, rather than from Lake Huron, as Detroit, and Flint had been doing. That water was much more corrosive than the previous supply, which led to lead being leeched into the supply via old pipes. Therefore, it was not the fault of Democrats; it is the result of Republican leadership wanting to “save money” that ended up poisoning the population of Flint.

    If you wanted to point out how bad Democrat leadership is in major cities, there were other examples you could have used. Look at Rahm Emanuel in Chicago for starters. However, your choice of Flint is backed up by misinformation/ disinformation. We could call your allegations lies, or at least, ignorance of the situation, what led to it, and who is ultimately responsible.

    Next time, do research before you put out unfounded allegations. Your listeners on the radio deserve better.

    • Paul Gleiser says:

      Mr. Gibson: I did do my research. The Flint emergency manager, Ed Kurtz, terminated a 50-year old water supply contract with Detroit in anticipation of joining a different regional water authority and to save $5 million per year. As a temporary measure between their withdrawal from the Detroit contract and before the formation of a new regional water authority (still not completed) Flint began drawing water from the Flint River. Detroit water was drawn from Lake Huron. River water is more corrosive than lake water and as a result, leached lead out of older pipes that are in parts of the Flint water infrastructure as well as in older homes. For 18 months, citizens complained about the foul smell and taste of the water and yet were told that the water was safe. Yes, Flint emergency manager Ed Kurtz was appointed by Republican Michigan governor Rick Snyder. But why did Flint need an “emergency manager” in the first place? The answer: Flint, after decades of Democratic control of its government, is a fiscal and social basket case. The appointment of an emergency manager is nothing less than tacit admission that citizens can no longer govern themselves. The citizens in this case are citizens that election after election choose Democrats. The end result for those residents of Flint was that they could not count on even the most basic of city services. The Flint Water Crisis has devolved into a finger-pointing mess and now has resulted in the appointment of a special prosecutor. All of which goes to my larger point behind which I solidly stand: the most financially distressed, crime-ridden, dysfunctional cities in America — of which Flint, Michigan is a prime example — have in common the fact that they are all run by Democrats.

      Thank you for taking the time to comment.

      Paul L. Gleiser

  2. Just another example of the dismal Democrat record.

  3. Linda E Montrose says:

    Mr. Gieser, you are very correct about the situation in Flint. It was NOT the republican leadership that caused this situation in the first place. Decades old democrap leadership is the answer to why this happened. If you want an example of what I am talking about lets take a look at Katrina and it’s aftermath in Louisiana. For decades, money was set aside for the repair of the levees. Instead of using that money to do as it was intended, it was used for other things, leaving the levees in disrepair. If you want to lay blame in Flint, do so at the proper place, the using of lead pipes in the first place would be a great place to start. In not replacing them in a timely manner would be another! You know within reason that this was something they were aware of years ago…under democrap leadership.

  4. Riderup says:

    And the most destitute states are those under Republican control.

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