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State budget: Kicking the can down the road

After yet another secretive deal-cutting session involving the usual "three men in a room scenario, the governor and the leaders of the Assembly and Senate came up with a budget that essentially postpones the hard choices demanded by a balloning deficit in a time of deepening recession -- payroll cuts, restructuring, less spending on the stuff favored by special interests, maybe even (gasp) an end to the member-item discretionary spending sometimes known as "pork."

In short, the bureaucracy spared itself, not the taxpayers. Tuesday's ediorial page says so, here.

The page also tries something new -- an add-on section that gives you contact and resource information. To be brutally honest, that's how we're trying to make lemonades out of a lemon -- the lemon being an economy-driven restructuring t(of the kind Albany can't seem to make) that costs us one more editorial writer. So when an issue warrants it, we'll be giving staff extra time to research and think through their editorials by running just one editorial and improving its punch by linking it to this new feature. Think of it as not only exhorting you to grab a figurative torch, but opening a torch booth for your shopping pleasure.

In this process, by the way, we're losing (at least part time) editorial writer George Pyle, who has been our blogger extraordinaire for some time now and has pioneered "aggregator" blogs on the News site. George will be working as a financial section reporter now and blogging for the business section,  where he'll be the same kind of excellent blogmeister. And, we're happy to say, he'll be back here for occasional fill-in weeks amounting to about a third of the year. Seems we just can't get by without him!

-mike vogel 


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