Texas Governor Rick Perry is taking strong exception to a cartoon published in the Sacramento Bee. Philly.com has picked up on the AP story by Will Weissert. The two panel cartoon shows Perry boasting about the low taxes and low regulation business policies of Texas with the phrase "Business is booming in Texas!" while the next panel shows a huge explosion.

AUSTIN, Texas - Gov. Rick Perry said Friday he's disgusted a California newspaper ran a cartoon that depicts him boasting about booming business in Texas, then shows an explosion, a week after a fertilizer plant explosion killed 14 people in a Texas town.

More below the Orange Omnilepticon

   The Sacramento Bee and the cartoonist are not having it.

Jack Ohman's cartoon of April 25 made a strong statement about Gov. Rick Perry's disregard for worker safety, and his attempts to market Texas as a place where industries can thrive with few regulations. It is unfortunate that Gov. Perry, and some on the blogosphere, have attempted to interpret the cartoon as being disrespectful of the victims of this tragedy. As Ohman has made clear on his blog, he has complete empathy for the victims and people living by the plant. What he finds offensive is a governor who would gamble with the lives of families by not pushing for the strongest safety regulations. Perry's letter is an attempt to distract people from that message.
The AP story by Weissert has additional details which adds some perspective on Perry's 'outrage'.
California has seen Perry's touting of his state's pro-business prowess firsthand. In February, a public-private Texas marketing firm ran radio ads featuring Perry denigrating California's taxes and regulation, and then Perry traveled there to recruit jobs. He made a similar trip , this time backed by a print-media ad buy , to Chicago this past week.

      Notably absent from Perry's display of outrage is any sense of shame for the consequences of the policies Perry has actively promoted as governor, or his own responsibility as head of the state government that failed so badly to protect its citizens. Republicans bill themselves as a party that strongly supports the idea of personal responsibility - yet they take none when their ideological pigeons come home to roost.

     To be sure, there are damn few politicians who want to be labeled "anti-business" these days - but Perry and his ilk have gone so far to the opposite extreme, the cartoon is if anything understated in its criticism. The ideology of money is producing devastation on a global scale that conventional terrorists can only envy. Corporate whores like Perry are killing us, piecemeal as in West, Texas and on a planetary scale as well.

   The video below shows how we are systematically being put at risk in service to the pro-business ideology, an ideology which is proving to be the greatest challenge of the 21st century. If we don't manage to rein it in, it may well be Game Over for America and the rest of the planet.


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