Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Paladino details welfare to work plan

I'm voting for Carl Paladino for governor because he's the only one out of the three candidates who is not a cookie cutter politician. I was reminded of this today when I drove on the 190 South and noticed a blank space where a 75 cent toll booth once stood. Rick Lazio and Andrew Cuomo won't do anything to disrupt the status quo in Albany or New York City. Paladino sure will try.

Paladino made a statement about his plan to help get people off of welfare yesterday (Have you seen the other guys' plans? No, because they don't have any.) The national media came out and said Paladino wants to house welfare recipients in prisons. Everyone jumped to conclusions without listening to the actual plan. Paladino wants to use existing space (we have unused prison space as well as college space) to set up dormitories to help interested people obtain jobs and get off welfare. Someone like Lazio or Cuomo would want to spend millions of dollars building new space. Paladino, thinking like a businessman, simply pointed out that we already have available space to carry out his plan...

But Michael R. Caputo, campaign spokesman, said Monday that Paladino’s ideas are being widely misinterpreted.
He said Paladino wants to remove fences and bars from prisons being closed and invite welfare recipients to receive training from state workers who Paladino anticipates would be cut from other state jobs in the near future.
He also suggested unused State University of New York dormitories and facilities could be used for the program.
“We’re talking about minimum- security prisons where we would rip down anything resembling security and turn them into dormitory and training centers where people can go to learn,” Caputo said.

Paladino is modeling the idea after the Civilian Conservation Corps, which his own father benefited from during the great depression. He also came up with what I think is a great quote regarding today's economy:

“The Dignity Corps proposal brings my father’s wonderful Civilian Conservation Corps experience to mind,” Paladino said. “There was economic trouble when he joined the CCC, much like we have today. Recession, depression: It doesn’t matter much what the economists call it if you can’t find a job.”

When Paladino comes up with ideas like this, people are free to offer their suggestions on what is practical. Paladino doesn't care what is politically correct (like Andrew and Rick will). He cares about what is doable. I'm not saying I agree with everything he stands for. I don't. I just like the fact that we have a chance to upset the apple cart in Albany and make some real change. If you like things the way they are, support Andrew Cuomo or Rick Lazio. They are being backed by the party leaders and Wall Street. They love the way things are right now at our expense, believe me.

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