Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Rep's "Charity" Dig Just Plain Wrong

There's an taped radio interview of Jess Stairs, R-Mt. Pleasant, complaining that his constituents are upset that he was going earmark his enormous pay raise to charitable organizations.

Is Mr. Stairs oblivious to reality or just THAT STUPID.

If he receives an additional $11,000 in his paycheck and Mr. Stairs donates some, or all, of that to charities...HE STILL GETS A TAX BREAK! And it's also been reported that the $11,000 would also be put toward his pension fund.

He gives nothing up by giving it away. Sure, his favorite pork "pet projects" get funded, and he gets patted on the back by all of the machine politicians that keep him in power. D or R, the pay grab was wrong.

Guys like Harry Readshaw, D-Carrick, did the right thing. Told everyone from day one that he wasn't going to accept the greedy pay raise. Mr. Readshaw, in a career before politics, was a full-time funeral director. Heck, sometimes you call the Readshaw Funeral Home on a Saturday and Harry might answer the phone!

Mr. Readshaw is the rare Pennsylvania public servant. He probably took a pay cut to have the distinction of driving four hours to Harrisburg. The best thing ever in Mr. Readshaw's political career was when he lost his bid for City Council more than a decade ago. He's done a much better job in our state's Capital.

Guys just like Stairs and state Senator Sean Logan--who was going to take the pay raise before radio's Fred Honsberger said that he might run for the seat himself--are not worthy of our trust when it comes to personal gain. Some of the guys are more honest: "I work 24/7 and deserve every cent I get," says the elected leader least qualified to lead.

True leaders say this pay grab is wrong. I don't want any part of it. "My constituents, many of whom are far more educated than I, don't make nearly $69,000, let alone $80,000 annually," is the right thing to say.

Too bad we don't have more more "leaders" who know how to lead.

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