A lot people seem to view government, not the private sector or the free market, as the arbiter and genesis of all things good.
I wrote a column recently describing the close to $1 billion surplus under Gov. John Bel Edwards as scandalous in light of the Democrat constantly crying wolf over budget woes. It did not sit well with many. I normally get a fair amount of emails from my columns, but the one criticizing the budget surplus was a record-breaker.
“You are a complete idiot,” writes Stephen. “Having a surplus is a good thing, you idiot. What a tool you are. Just another cold-hearted hateful conservative Republican. Maybe go suck up to Steve Scalise so we can get some more guns on the street. You disgust me.”
“You sir are a fool,” writes Robert. “While you continue with your rants about state spending you fail to realize education was severely cut by the love of your life governor jinglenuts.”
“Your article is laugh-out-loud ridiculous, and I don't think the people of Louisiana are buying the snake oil that you and your ilk in the GOP are trying to sell them,” writes Michael.
“Nice partisan hack job Dan,” writes Mikey.
“You are consistently bigoted and dishonest," writes Michael. “You do not like facts ... so any Trumpette can share your hatred. You resent poor and middle-income people getting health care. I know you love to think about poor people dying and going bankrupt, but you can still have your parties celebrating abuse of migrant children. All sane people think this is a good idea and worth the money, but it does not fit into your hate-mongering. Maybe (Eddie) Rispone will bring his bow and arrow again to shoot at pictures of migrant children. You are not pro-life and are full of hatred.”
“Your unbelievable far-right insanity is hilarious. Your weekly writings are pathetic,” writes Kurt.
Online commenters were equally passionate.
“A little civics lesson, Meathead,” posted DW. “A LA governor can argue, cajole, explain, warn, prophesy, even threaten in support or opposition to taxes or the state’s annual budget, but only the legislature can raise or lower taxes or fund the budget.”
“Dan, keep throwing that dog doo-doo against the wall. Some of it might stick,” posted Gary.
“Fagan is a well known Satanist and child molester with a long rap sheet,” posted someone identifying themselves as United Citizens for Good Morals.
“Fagan and his ilk are so f-ing phony. They are the very definition of phony. Utterly bankrupt hypocrites, every last one,” posted Paul.
Philip posted, “Keep in mind that Dan is a Jindal fan when you read his opinion pieces.” Charlotte added, “Yep, and a horrible person. “
Facebookers got in on the fun.
Paul Perkowski: "Dan Fagan is part of the head-in-the-sand cabal that got us into this mess. Why would we listen to anything he says?"
Tim S. West: "dan fagan is a 0. I never read anything more than his headline. I do not have time for his stupidity."
Bryan Jones: "Dan Fagan would lose an argument to a sack of hammers."
Maria Radosta: "Dan Fagan is a joke and will say anything."
Logan Williams: "Garbage article."
Clay Moncrief: "Fagan is simply another ring-wing idiot who thinks we are idiots too. If all of them were raptured this state's population would decrease by 85%. Please Jesus, call them home!"
I clearly touched a nerve questioning the state's burdening taxpayers, giving Louisiana close to a cumulative $1 billion surplus in the years since Edwards took office. I’ve always held the belief the larger the government the smaller the individual. It’s obviously not a viewpoint shared by all.
It should be said most disagreeing with me on the state’s surplus would not resort to insults. It’s just most of those who contacted me did. And I should also say it’s not that I have a problem with government surpluses per se. But when they are produced by raising billions in new taxes, by scaring seniors in nursing homes, it’s a different story altogether. Government should live within its means and not collect more than it needs.
Email Dan Fagan at firstname.lastname@example.org.