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Thursday, March 16, 2017

Why am I paying for this junk?

President Trump's efforts to balance a federal budget that is $443 billion out of whack -- the deficit grows by more than a billion a day -- is meeting resistance in Philadelphia, where the National Park Service is threatening to close all the exhibits at the "Independence National Historical Park."

So what? It is a fake park.

From the Philadelphia newspaper:
With cuts looming, Park Service closes Ben Franklin print shop, Jefferson’s Declaration House
As federal employees in Philadelphia await President Trump’s first budget -- and the massive cuts hinted at in leaks -- workers at some agencies say they’re already feeling the squeeze.
The union that represents the employees at Independence National Historical Park says the president’s hiring freeze on most federal jobs has forced the closure of several historic buildings and exhibits across the park.
David Fitzpatrick, the president of American Federation of Government Employees Local 2058, said the freeze was responsible for the shuttering of seven attractions, including Declaration House, where Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence; exhibits at the site of Ben Franklin’s home and print shop; and the home of Tadeusz Kosciuszko, the Polish military leader who served as a brigadier general in the Revolutionary War.
Well, that's too bad, isn't it?

I suppose we could cut back on other things -- say, strip former presidents of their Secret Service protection as we did in the past.

But really, why is this a national park?

The Liberty Bell is important, and we should display and protect it. But surely the good people of Philadelphia should cover the cost of preserving it, in exchange for the honor of being its home.

Otherwise, put her back on the road traveling from city to city like "Then Came Bronson," only without the motorcycle. That is what it did from 1866 to 1947.

Then there is Independence Hall. It looks nice but over its 264 years, the building has had its various parts demolished and rebuilt, or renovated quite a few times.

That iconic clock? It's a 1973 restoration of the replica of the original Thomas Stretch clock.

Franklin’s Print Shop? A 1975 recreation.

Declaration House? A 1975 recreation.

It's like having a museum of art with copies.

The home of Tadeusz Kosciuszko? The structure is real. Restored.

And he lived in Mrs. Ann Relf's boarding house at the corner of 3rd and Pine Streets in Society Hill for a few months in 1796, so I suppose it has some historic significance. General Kosciuszko was a very important soldier in George Washington's army.

But, man, is that a stretch to call it his home.

I get that Philadelphia wants to keep its tourist attraction.

So here's my suggestion: you pay for it.

And West Virginia will pay for all its tourist attractions, and so forth.

Unless it is a matter of life and death, Congress should not be borrowing money so Philadelphia can collect hotel taxes from out-of-towners.

By the way, the article was written by Aubrey Whelan, who serves as the resistance reporter for the Philadelphia newspapers (online I cannot tell if she appears in the Inquirer or the Daily News).

Her last three stories were:
With cuts looming, Park Service closes Ben Franklin print shop, Jefferson’s Declaration House
Leaked HUD plan sends chill through Philly housing community
Hawaii sues over the travel ban, Planned Parenthood declines a White House deal, and a Jersey Shore congressman battles the Obamacare repeal
That last story was about as local as a bomb threat in Nigeria.

Well, it is her credibility and that of her newspaper which she diminishes.

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  1. I heard you can see George Washington's hammer in the workshop at Mt Vernon. The head has been replaced twice, and the handle has been replaced once.

    1. But more important, you can see a Cherry Tree that is a direct descendant of one similar to the one he supposedly cut down.

    2. And because Mt. Vernon is privately owned and not government funded, it didn't cost the taxpayers a dime to restore that hammer or replant that tree.

    3. Not to mention the axe he chopped it down with.

  2. get rid of federal employee unions.

    1. Exactly, revert to F. Roosevelt's policy by rescinding Kennedy's EO. No action required by Congress though I'm fairly confident a judge can be found to declare it unconstitutional or something.

    2. Get rid of feral employees instead. Make it a contract position and let the unions bid for the positions on a five year contract. All bids must be competitive with at least three bids.
      Same for congressional staff, make them the sole responsibility of the critter whom they pretend to work for and require they be recruited from the critter's home district.

  3. Just like Obummer. Take an attraction that folks can just freely walk into and block it off. Try to make the folks feel angry at the cuts. Don't worry about all the other items that could be cut. Pure spitefulness. - Elric

  4. you will go into conniptions if you take a look at Glacier Bays' little's a employee resort

  5. One more reason to OUTSOURCE everything in government.

    "A City Outsources Everything. Sky Doesn’t Fall." Re: Maywood CA
    NY TIMES July 19, 2010

    "A Georgia Town Takes the People’s Business Private" Re: Sandy Springs GA
    NY Times, June 23, 2012

  6. I hadn't heard of Tadeusz Kosciuszko before, so I learned something new today.

  7. I know! I know! (wait for it...)

    Allocate that brand new soda tax! Problem solved. And *sweet*.

  8. Yep, let Aubrey take that bell on the road. Call it the "Free Whelan" tour.

  9. Cut the CIA budget in half! Huge waste of taxpayer's money.

  10. SO, more of the same from the left: people with their tin-cups out are mad. It's like the shrillness surrounding the repeal of Obamacare, it's the smashed cats wailing they're gonna lose a freebie. Eff them.

  11. "Leaked HUD plan sends chill through Philly housing community"

    Translation: "Leaked HUD plan sends chill through Philly welfare bum community."

  12. If Valerie Jarrett is still getting Secret Service protection, which she never deserved in the first place, that would be an excellent place to cut and get some money for Philadelphia and its faux park.


  13. her defense; Jersey Shore is actually a town in central PA., not like the New Jersey beach-your point still stands, tho...

  14. I have no problem with Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell being in the National Park Service. I also have no problem charging people some reasonable fee to go see them (if poor school kids want to go they should be free, but adult tourists should pay for their upkeep). When I go to any of the big NP, I pay $25 to $30 (or I buy the annual NP pass for $80).

    1. If you are 62 years of age or older, you can buy the National Park Service Senior Pass, which costs $10 if you buy it on-site, or $20 if you purchase it by mail. It's a lifetime pass, a terrific bargain.

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