Sunday, February 09, 2014

FSP Fails in Grafton

Last year Free Staters boasted about cutting the police budget in Weare, blocking school spending in Keene, and cutting the budget in Grafton by 10%.

This year things seem to be taking a different turn. 

Not only were the Free Keeners unable to slash school spending - they were mocked by their community. 

Grafton had rather a colorful deliberative session. The better part of two hours were spent debating the rules of decorum  that were handed out by the moderator, and a voter registration issue. The Constitutional "experts" of the FSP don't seem to understand the rules that govern town meeting. 

The rules prohibit cursing, name calling and personal attacks against people or their motives, and give the moderator the authority to ask the police officer in attendance to remove from the building any person conducting himself or herself in a disorderly manner.

That's how town meeting works everywhere I've ever been, yet there was much  moaning and wailing about First Amendment rights. 

Bottom line:

The meeting, which started at 9 a.m., lasted about 11 hours, but all the warrant articles “survived” and none were thrown out or changed dramatically, said Selectboard Chairman Steve Darrow.
Grafton residents have always been reluctant to spend money, Darrow said, but the Free Stater’s role last year in cutting the budget arbitrarily caused a larger turnout this year. The Free Staters were vocal, but they couldn’t control key votes.
People wanted to show up to make sure what happened last year didn’t happen again,” Darrow said late Saturday night. “There was strong support from people who didn’t want the budget cut arbitrarily.”

Let's summarize, shall we? Last year the Free Staters boasted about their success in cutting the budget. This year,  the townspeople decided that wasn't going to happen again this year, even if it meant sitting through 11 hours of meeting. 

Once again, town meeting works exactly the way it is supposed to. The way it has for hundreds of years. 


Anonymous said...

This is certainly promising and heartening. I notice that sadly, most individuals do not understand the fundamentals of "freedom of speech". This liberty does not mean that every individual should eject every ugly thought because they can. When our speech hurts someone, causes emotional harm and can portend violence, then it is no longer free, but comes at a high price. I have neighbors who are very religious ironically. They also believe that any opinion that is homophobic is protected under Freedom of Speech.

One cannot fix Freedom of Stupid.

Anonymous said...

Everything ever built requires a certain amount of maintenance.

Changing the oil in your Car on a regular basis costs a LOT LESS than replacing the Engine.

The SAME applies to Roads, schools, Bridges, water mains, sewers and the Electrical Grid.

Cutting back on spending might make you feel better in the SHORT term, but it can cause Bigger problems in the Future.

Anonymous said...

Actually, it was exactly how town meeting is NOT supposed to work. The budget, although admittedly printed and distributed with errors, was never "deliberated" by the voters. The anti-free-staters are just as good at destroying democracy as those they accuse.

susanthe said...

And we're supposed to trust the say so of an anonymous person?

Try harder.