Safford: RI’s Dysfunction Hits an All-Time High

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Here’s what’s happening in Rhode Island. While we all are driving on roads loaded with potholes and living with infrastructure that’s crumbling, some members of the general assembly continue to look for more ways to take more of your money.

Two recent bills attempt to leak through the cracks created by the recent federal Net Neutrality laws–despite one representative not knowing enough about what he proposed to fully understand what he was saying.

One bill attempts to tax all explicit content you watch online–at $20 a pop. So that means all porn and nudity will cost us $20 a peek?

If the General Assembly passes the bill, does that make them the online pimps? All you need to do is pay the price and see the girl?

Indecency Tax?

Net Neutrality laws make this possible. But enforcing this law would cost more than it’s worth. Would fine arts websites be fined? What about nudity on private messaging and Snapchat? How much goes to Cox and Verizon? Are you going to get every cell phone provider to play along too? What about when I’m in RI and my phone is using a tower in CT?

These people are so under-informed it’s like watching your grandparents program a smart TV.

Another equally disturbing proposed bill would tax all video games by $5 if they were of the graphic and violent content nature. One representative believes this will keep them out of the hands of young children. He believes these games are the root cause of school shooting motivation.

That’s false.

Not all school shooters played violent video games, but you know what they did have in common? There are no fathers in the picture.

The Need For Masculine Presence (Dads)

Maybe your efforts would produce better results if you looked at what’s going on in DCYF and some of our group homes. If you’re worried about school shootings that’s it.

It’s a disastrous mess. RI Relevant just reported on the fact that DCYF allowed a group home, where a manager was accused of sex trafficking, to remain open. http://www.rirelevant.com/news/state-ri-continues-relationship-group-home-sex-trafficking-alleged/

Ironically, nobody who supposedly cares about children, outside of a group of legislators on the Oversight Committee, is even talking about this.

Violent video games? I play them every day. Not only do I have to drive on busted roads you can’t figure out how to fix, but now I have to pay extra to buy a video game because of your personal beliefs?

DCYF in Chaos, But Let’s Talk Video Games?

This law is ridiculous and it would never come to pass. It is a waste of time to consider because the person proposing the game doesn’t realize that we live in a tiny state. I’ll drive to Massachusetts to buy my games. Brilliant move! You just drove business out if the state. Aaaaaaand someone needs to explain to this guy what DLC is.

The General Assembly really thinks it should tell us what video games to play?

The irony here is that this representative doesn’t understand that most games are streamed with DLC. Net Neutrality laws actually allow him to attempt to tax it the same way as the explicit content would be taxed. But that’s not in the proposed bill.

It’s not in there because he didn’t know to put it in there. We have uneducated, juvenile lawmakers. Sen Kettle just showed you how mature some of our general assembly actually is.

We have reps proposing bills to change ways of life they don’t even fully understand.

But wait, there’s more!

Our wonderful governor signed an executive order last week that is beyond scary. It’s a panic mode, poorly thought through piece of legislation . All the ‘whereas’ and ‘whomsoevers’ in the world aren’t masking your fear.

The worst types of legislation are passed during times of crisis. Panic sets in and no one is using their heads.

I’ve spoken with a few defense attorneys about Raimondo’s most recent executive order. I could see the dollar signs in their eyes. Take a look at the fine print. Focus on anonymity and ask yourself who has the power? How does this order interact with the first amendment?

Raimondo Grandstands, Ignores Important Issues

If someone says ‘I wish someone would hurt you”, that’s fine, because the first amendment protects your right to express your opinion. Her new order can’t touch that statement.

But if someone says ‘Hey if I had a gun I’d shoot you’, that’s now illegal and warrants a full blown search and seizure of your home because of the order.

Does this make sense to you?

What’s the point of this executive order? You can ask yourself that all day and you’ll come to the same conclusion I did. It’s panic mode legislation to put smiles on people’s faces because as of late your governor has been late to every party.

We have members of the general assembly peddling porn and violent video games for profit but they can’t put their heads together and do what every other state is doing with marijuana.

I’ve replaced two tires and a pair of shocks on a 3 year old vehicle this year because our roads are literally falling apart and being filled in with garbage material. Meanwhile we have some real geniuses trying to come up with new ways to tax people under the guise of making the world a better place.

New Leaders Needed

Most attorneys knowledge is strictly limited to what they deal with on a daily basis. I’m pretty confident these reps aren’t getting advice from attorneys that work on a daily basis with porn peddlers and violent video game makers.

These types of legislators are dead weight. Stop voting for dead weight that tries to disguise tax revenue as ‘making the world a better place’.

I’ve got news for people like you. Baby Boomers are on the way out. Gen X is creeping up into retirement age. Once your elderly consist of Xennials like myself that’s the end of the line for your archaic methods.

You aren’t pulling the wool over the eyes of anyone in my generation. Your voter trends and antiquated political approach are out the window. Voters are getting smarter.

Not only are these types of bills a waste of time what happens when some poorly thought out panic mode junk proposal passes? And the state gets hit with multiple seven figure lawsuits?

Pay attention to the junk proposals and vote those bums right out in November.

James Safford
James Safford is a member of the Scituate Land Trust and Conservation Commission. He has authored multiple books and sees politics though a bipartisan viewpoint. Send him email at jamessafford@yahoo.com.
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