Will wonders never cease? Like a hungry dog wolfing down a can of Alpo, Ohio media has its share of lapdog journalists who swallow whole Ohio Gov. John Kasich’s largely fabricated story of an Ohio miracle born of his magic sounding but all too often misguided policies.
From the early days of 2010, following his years as a Fox News talk show host and Lehman Brothers Wall Street banker, John Kasich, who leveraged his 18 years in congress to get those lucrative, revolving door jobs, has never stopped peddling his decades-old brand of political and economic malarkey as a panacea for returning the state to normal following a national economic meltdown that spread across the globe.
Buckeye Babble Cry
Ohio media in general and statehouse reporters in particular appear unable or unwilling to challenge the imperial leader’s self-basting narrative that his anti-government-pro-corporation beliefs—enacted with complicity by a friendly and equally lost Republican legislature—turned around a state already in turnaround mode from a far worse fate.
Breathless coverage of his transparent peek-a-boo campaign for president is standard fare by Big D and the PD—which earned a big slice of ignominy last year when it removed a video of the governor at a candidate question session last year behaving rude, mean and petulant child after his handlers complained it showed Kasich being Kasich. Here at Plunderbund, we strive to be both a conscience and a counterweight to other media outlets interested in the horse race aspect of politics.
PB’s intrepid team of special force writers and reporters isn’t fooled or intimidated into covering Ohio’s go-go CEO like the Buckeye Messiah he desperately wants others to see him as.
Being Blunt To Gov. Mean
Hope springs eternal, as it did twice recently when a couple agents of mainstream media dared offer coverage using the harsh light of reality. PD pundit Brent Larkin and Toledo Blade columnist Marilou Johanek deserve gold stars for not sparing the rod to spoil the governor.
For Larkin, who can and has blown hot or cold on Kasich, he mocked the 62-year old hard-right governor running who will paint himself as a moderate Republican even though he’s not. Larkin said Kasich has the right message to be president but maybe not the right stuff. He called “nonsense” on Kasich Administration claims that the sky would fall if the legislature doesn’t kowtow to the executive budget. First, the Ohio House trashed it and the Senate is expected to birth its own budget baby soon. While Mr. Kasich is out touting himself as a leader, back home he’s leading from behind, which is where national polling on the dozen or so presidential wannabees in the GOP candidate debris field also find him.
In another rare display of speaking truth to power from a legacy print newspaper, the Toledo Blade’s Johanek pounded Kasich on privatizing profits from the Ohio Turnpike, a decades old, tried and true money maker. Gov. Kasich wasted no time bonding out its cash flow in order to amass funds to fund infrastructure projects not always along the turnpike path.
“It is a shell game. Sleight of hand. Robbing Peter to pay Paul,” Johanek wrote of Kasich’s leverage strategy, likely learned on-the-job from his years working at Lehman Brothers. For obvious reasons, Gov. Kasich doesn’t like to revisit his tenure at Lehman, which produced hundreds of millions in losses to Ohio pension funds that were sold a bill of goods the governor helped market for the Wall Street firm. When Lehman collapsed over subprime mortgages, it triggered the meltdown that precipitated the Great Recession, which in turn took down Ohio and nearly every other state. Lehman leveraged itself into extinction, and Kasich has likewise leveraged Ohio assets, first with liquor profits then with turnpike cash.
“Those terms describe what Republican Gov. John Kasich and his partisan friends are doing with the money from Ohio Turnpike tolls. The fast move to siphon toll money for transportation projects beyond the turnpike’s route is a first in Ohio,” Johanek wrote.
For the vast army of PB readers, which we understand includes Mr. Kasich himself and members of his kitchen cabinet, the intrepid band of contributors here who regularly post reports, commentary and insight about Ohio politics know Gov. Kasich is an open book test with all the answers in plain sight.