Political bickering overshadows need for change - WBOY - Clarksburg, Morgantown: News, Sports, Weather

Political bickering overshadows need for change

Posted: Updated:
  • OPINIONEditorialsMore>>

  • Transition team must act with urgency

    Transition team must act with urgency

    Friday, December 16 2016 6:00 AM EST2016-12-16 11:00:16 GMT

    Governor-elect Jim Justice’s policy committees seem to be made up of some of the state’s best minds. Dr. Clay Marsh with West Virginia University Hospitals; Bill Ihlenfeld, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District; Richard Adams of United Bank; Dave Arnold with Adventures on the Gorge; a host of other intelligent, qualified, inventive people who understand the challenges our state faces. 

    Governor-elect Jim Justice’s policy committees seem to be made up of some of the state’s best minds. Dr. Clay Marsh with West Virginia University Hospitals; Bill Ihlenfeld, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District; Richard Adams of United Bank; Dave Arnold with Adventures on the Gorge; a host of other intelligent, qualified, inventive people who understand the challenges our state faces. 

  • Chief of staff brings needed experience to the Justice team

    Chief of staff brings needed experience to the Justice team

    Friday, December 9 2016 6:00 AM EST2016-12-09 11:00:15 GMT

    This week, Governor-elect Jim Justice announced that Nick Casey, a long-time lobbyist, former congressional candidate, former state Democratic Party chairman and a fixture in West Virginia’s political scene, will serve as the Justice administration’s chief of staff.

    This week, Governor-elect Jim Justice announced that Nick Casey, a long-time lobbyist, former congressional candidate, former state Democratic Party chairman and a fixture in West Virginia’s political scene, will serve as the Justice administration’s chief of staff.

New ideas and ways to move our state and nation forward are in short supply during this election season.

Assaulted with an angry chorus of who dislikes the current president most, voters are not getting much other than someone exclaiming his or her opponent sides with the White House. The current administration has no doubt earned the ire of many, but a platform based solely on how bad another person does his or her job is, at best, counterproductive. From Washington on down, we need strategic, brave, forward-thinking leaders who can do more than blame a lame duck for what ails our country and our state.

Nowhere is this more apparent than West Virginia. In a state where politicians wield far too much power, we are subjected to a sad, ugly history of political corruption that goes beyond vote buying and backroom deals. President Obama has clearly marginalized the Mountain State. His decisions while in the Oval Office can and should be debated, but he had nothing to do with the shenanigans and the abuse of justice in Mingo County, the fact that real education reform dies every year in our state House of Delegates or that a few influential lobbyists seem to be running the show in Charleston. He is not the reason we need change. We need change because our sons and daughters continue to leave in search of a better life and our economy remains stagnant.

Momentum is there. We've tackled some serious challenges; our future is very bright as a leading natural resource- and energy-based state. A once-broken workers' compensation system is now a model for other states. Other Post Employment Benefit debt, something that could have pulled us into a bucket of red ink, has been addressed. We came out of the Great Recession in better shape than many other states and, because of some sound financial management, we are weathering a drop off in tax collections without having to severely slash services. These are triumphs; however, if we're going to march boldly into the 21st century and truly compete with those around us and the rest of the world, we need fresh faces and fresh thinkers. We need the halls and chambers of the House of Delegates and West Virginia Senate to crackle with new, bold ideas. We need a two-party system — a system where politicians actually have to compete for our vote and must be accountable to the people they represent.

Powered by Frankly