Friday, March 13, 2009

Garcia Answers Anonymous Criticism

I published the following comment because I decided to answer it:

"You seem to be, at best, either a very, very conservative Democrat or a democrat in name only. How a person such as yourself ever got elected as Democratic Party Chair in Dona Ana County is beyond me. The posts on your blog echo Republican thoughts in the rest of the state.
I have left several posts on this blog disagreeing and have yet to se one posted."

Here is my answer:

Your comment amounts to name calling rather than disagreeing with something I said. Your assertion that I harbor "Republican thoughts" suggests both that I have them (whatever that means) and that there is something wrong with that. And your comment that I am either a conservative Democrat or a "democrat (sic) in name only" similarly suggests not only that I am a conservative Democrat (whatever that means) but also that there is something bad about that. An inference in your comment is that if you disagree with someone you are justified in suggesting disloyalty to the party. Since no one wants to be called a traitor, a subtle fear factor in invoked.

Nowhere do you refer to something specific I have written and then argue with it. Your comment is pure innuendo. The reader should fill in the blanks with your negative thoughts and direct them against me. But yes, I can figure out what you mean: you don't like it that I have complimented Sen. John Smith for showing leadership. Since Smith is known to be a conservative Democrat you accuse me of being the same and then ridicule me for that. But since when have conservative Democrats been incapable of leadership? Do you disagree with me? Tell us why. You don't like it that I criticized the Lt. Governor and Senate Majority Leader for not showing leadership. It would appear you think they are liberal Democrats (a conclusion I wouldn't necessarily share, and one that is irrelevant to the point I was making) and therefore should not be criticized. These two potential candidates are in key leadership positions. they should be willing to let us know now what they think. Do they agree with the governor's priorities? What are their priorities? What should we be doing about the crisis? Do you disagree with this? Then say so, no need to call me names.

One of the problems in the Republicans have today is precisely that they created litmus tests about what being a good Republican meant. Conservative religious groups began demanding that Republicans should all think alike on issues like abortion and stem-cell research and evolution and deregulation. Many Republicans stopped drinking the kool-aid when they woke up and found the Republican doctrine of balanced budgets and small government had ended up under W. Bush in a drunken-sailor binge of spending, debt, unnecesary war, and a huge increase in the size and scope of government, including an unprecedented assault on civil liberties, and all of this ended up in a scandalous collapse of our economic system caused in great part by the doctrine of deregulation which in pracice meant, "let the banks cheat about the soundness of housing mortgages and let the Madoffs rip off." Fewer people identify as a Republicans today than they have since the Watergate scandals destroyed Nixon a third of a century ago. Forcing people to demonstrate loyalty to party doctrine is the ultimate disrespect to democracy, where different people should be able to present their views without fear. The goal is better government, not more Democrats or more Republicans in office.

For several years the state has been plagued by corruption scandals. Two state treasurers are in jail and former President of the Senate Manny Aragon will be sentenced next week for acts of corruption. Many other credible allegations of wrongdoing are being investigated as we speak. All of the culprits or alleged culprits are Democrats: am I a wicked conservative Democrat traitor for mentioning these facts? The true disloyalty to the party, and it applies to both liberal and conservative members, comes from people like Manny Aragon, who used his powerful position to line his pockets with taxpayer money, and there is nothing conservative or liberal about saying so.

My last point: you complain that I did not publish some of your other comments. That is correct. They were name-calling personal attacks on me or others. If you are so lazy that instead of telling me why you disagree you slap a negative label on me, this is not acceptable. And when you use the "anonymous" label to call me names you would not dare to use in a face to face meeting, this is nothing less than cowardice. Try me: tell me why I'm wrong and I will publish your comment. And if you sign your name I will even permit a certain amount of name calling. I'm a grown man.


teampurochile said...

RIGHT ON!!! Amen. I read your blog because, for one, no one else has one that is informing me about issues and concerns that directly impact me and my community. I appreciate that. Your writings are fair, honest and accurate. I also agree that anyone who hides behind “Anonymous” is just what you describe, a coward. The comment section in this blog and like that in,, and a few others are allowing for a healthy discussion. That is what democracy should be, and for the writers to be brave enough to post and allow us to criticize and relay our opinion is even braver. We should reflect that bravery by our comments back, to at least sign our names to our criticism and opinion. I commend Dr. Garcia and others for sharing there time to allow us to be informed.

I challenge anonymous and all of us to follow in there lead and maybe even offer up our own writings and time to express our opinions. We may even want to take it a step further and follow in the lead like Gwyneth Doland, Heath Haussamen, who are complimenting the challenge by some pretty brave legislators like Representatives Janice Arnold Jones, Dennis Kintigh and Candy Spence Ezzell who are taking video cameras and audio into there committees and allowing us to actually see and hear what’s going on in Santa Fe, by posting it on there blogs. These folks are, in my opinion, brave first and whatever party they represent second. I’m a registered Democrat but I vote for candidates that give me a reason today to vote for them tomorrow. So far those candidates are a few, but I have faith some will rise to that leadership.

I have a new found appreciation for my Senators Nava and Papen and for our Representatives Cervantes and Garcia as well as our new Congressman Teague and in fact all of our elected officials in NM who work very long hours in Santa Fe and DC and still make time to meet with constituents. Thank you again Dr. Garcia for your blog and your fair, honest and accurate writings. I look forward to your future posts.

Arturo Uribe
Mesquite resident

Anonymous said...

DR Garcia-

Keep up the great blog! You are the only blog in the state that has reported on all the misdeeds that Gov Richardson has done to the great state of NM. I would like you to report on the local housing scandal in Dona Ana county and how the AG has done nothing.

Jose Z. Garcia said...

As I understand it, there is a report about the report from State Auditor Balderas that is about to come out, dealing with the housing scandal.

GSal said...

I (SE NM Conservative Republican) am happy Anonymous Liberal Democrat has the opportunity to express his/her thoughts on this blog as well in any other format in this country. It's one of those wonderful rights we are endowed with as citizens of the United States. He/She might be a bit more hesitant in Cuba, Iran, China or any of the other countries who believe "free speech" is an oxymoron. Dr. Garcia's political leanings were obvious to me but I like to see the big picture. He covers topics that are important to NM. Every poly sci professor I had in college was very liberal and I still came out a conservative because I'm an independent thinker. The animosity between liberals and conservatives has not always existed at the level it does today. One interesting example of this was Tip O'Neil(from Mass no less) and George H.W. Bush--opposite ends of the political spectrum but great friends. They maintained a level of respect and decorum that seems to be missing today. You do not have to agree with the policy but you must respect the person's right to have an opinion and their right to express it. Dr. Garcia do not feel obligated to go off on the Republicans now-ha! Thanks for a very engaging blog! My two cents...