Number 7: Nevada or ... Somalia?
In the spirit of the 12 Days of Christmas, I'm going to be listing my 12 favorite Write on Nevada posts from 2011. I'll post them from December 16 to January 2. We love to get your feedback, so please leave your thoughts in the comments. Here's number 7.
Thoughts on this post: The hyperbole that inspired this post still makes me chuckle ... and cringe.
Nevada or ... Somalia?
I was on KNPR's State of Nevada last week discussing the new Brookings report titled "Structurally Unbalanced" with Matthew Murray (the report's author), John Restrepo (a Nevada economist) and Launce Rake (PLAN's communications director). (Additional thoughts on the report are here.)
During the course of the conversation I noted that many of the so-called deep cuts that happened during the 2009 session and 2010 special session were either smaller-than-desired increases in state spending or small overall reductions.
The host then asked Launce to respond. Instead of addressing the facts that I presented, Launce accused me of being a "snake oil salesman" (22:40) and uttered this unbelievable bit of hyperbole (23:40).
"... a little dark humor here, but people are dropping dead on the sidewalk because of a lack of health care services. This is a reality that we're dealing with [in Nevada]. As long as the governor [Sandoval] is just going to parrot that snake oil and say, 'No new taxes,' and that's some sort of magic panacea, we are going to fail as a state. We are going to be the Somalia of the United States. We are no longer the Mississippi of the West. We are the Somalia of the United States."Yep, some leftists think Nevada is the Somalia of the United States. In the spirit of one of my favorite "Daily Show" segments, let's consider that statement.
When they don't have facts on their side, some individuals will use rhetorical hyperbole to try and scare people and discredit their opponents. Pretending that the situation in Nevada even holds a candle to the tragedy that has occurred and continues to occur in Somalia is beyond the pale.
Let's keep the debate focused on the issues and facts, not on fear-mongering rhetoric.