Paul Tonko Does The Right Thing

August 6, 2011

The President and the Republicans continue to compromise the economy, but our Congressional representative stands firm

The other week I received a form letter from my Congressman, Paul Tonko, thanking me for contacting his staff over the phone “with my concerns.” I get these impersonal mailings from politicians fairly often. Usually I rip them open, scan the words quickly, laugh or snarl or shrug. Then I very carefully file them away for immediate recycling.

Congressman Paul Tonko, NY 21 Congressman Paul Tonko, NY 21

This doesn’t mean I don’t take these politician form letters seriously. But all too often our elected officials, particularly the big State and Federal politicians, have nothing to say to us voters other than to justify their latest lies and corporate giveaways. As such I’ve noted that the quality of the words contained in a politician form letter corelates directly to the quality of the sender.

Once in a while I get a politician form letter that is worth reading. Usually I consider these letters notable because I consider them Evidence. I show them to other people so I can rant at my victims about politics. Sometimes the letters end up on this blog so I can rant about local politics to people on the other side of the world.

This particular letter from Mr. Tonko was actually an email that looked exactly like one of those official Congressional dead tree letters delivered by mail carrier. Of all the taxpayer funded constituent letters that I regularly recieve, Mr. Tonko’s is the only one who uses email in such a cost saving way. Quite unusual for a Baby Boomer in his early sixties.

This is what Mr. Tonko had to say in his form letter, right at top:

Medicare and Social Security are two of the most successful government programs in U.S. history, and I am committed to ensuring their success well into the future. It is because of programs like these that we are living better, longer, and healthier lives than in the past. I pledge to do all I can to preserve these essential social safety nets. This is a time to ensure a strong future for Social Security and Medicare, not the time to cut benefits, as many in Washington are proposing.