Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Chris Christie and the "Broken Wndows" theory of governance

"If a window is broken and left unrepaired, people walking by will conclude that no one cares and no one is in charge."

Rudy Giuliani adopted the Broken Windows Theory and implemented a community-policing strategy focused on order maintenance… graffiti washed nightly from subway cars, $1.25 subway turnstile-jumpers arrested, trash picked up. Minor, seemingly insignificant quality-of-life crimes were found to be the tipping point for violent crime. When New York "windows" were repaired, crime dropped.

And now Chris Christie, the best governor in the United States of America, is applying the "Broken Windows" theorem to the area of state spending:

Saying “This is just the sort of spending that needs scrutiny and explanation,” Gov. Christie vetoed the minutes of the April 26 meeting of the New Jersey Urban Enterprise Zone Authority. The governor’s concern is a $1.3 million land purchase in Pleasantville. The price for two properties was $165,000 more than the appraised value.

Before the funds are released, those premiums above appraised value must be justified. This is the kind of accountability we and the taxpayers of New Jersey should reasonably expect.”

That’s a relatively small sum considering the millions usually wasted by state government but it puts entities on notice somebody is watching. It marks the ninth time Christie has vetoed minutes of authorities and commissions since he took office Jan. 19.

And across New Jersey, the crooked politicians shake as one and whisper, "If you can't get away with a little six-figure padding, how the heck are we gonna get away with our run-of-the-mill 7 to 8 figure padding?"

When the petty vandals in NYC realized that someone was watching them, and there would be real time to pay, they put away their spray-paint cans and found something productive to do. Now that the public payroll thieves in New Jersey are on notice that every penny is being accounted for, they're going to have to find another state in which to ply their scams.

As we say in the Garden State, "Don't f*ck with the Fat Man..."

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