Tuesday, April 7, 2009

On Cynicism

Maybe term limits are a good thing in that they call an abrupt end to that feeling that you've heard it all before. Or maybe other officeholders are able to view every budget year as a new awakening, filled to overflowing with opportunities. Maybe I'm just tired.

Following last night's BOE budget session, I breakfasted early, along with about 20 folks from Cortland, Broome, and Tompkins Counties, with our new senator, Kirsten Gillibrand. If she's tired of anything (and she must at least be weary of people's misspelling her name), it doesn't show. She's on what Hillary's people once christened a "listening tour" of upstate NY, and she skillfully handled our questions and comments on bank regulation, SUNY funding, single-payer health care, economic opportunities, NCLB reform (mine), and recent laws that favor corporate farmers over small farmers. She's incredibly articulate, which seems to me to be 90 percent of what a senator needs to succeed (or am I being cynical?) Especially because I bumbled through a very inarticulate evening (on my part) last night, I admire her dexterity enormously.

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