Taking issue with Examiner coverage of DC's CFO
Re: "Politics and the Money Man," July 9.
Examiner Columnist Jonetta Rose Barras once again -- when writing about Chief Financial Officer Dr. Natwar Gandhi -- invents facts, quotes alleged sources whom she never names, and reprints statements by others that are not based in fact.
First, she writes that "Taxpayers have often picked up the tabs" for Dr. Gandhi's breakfast and lunches with city leaders. Dr. Gandhi uses his personal funds to pay for those meals and has never requested reimbursement from the city.
Second, she suddenly remembers a meeting that may have taken place 10 years ago and anonymous sources, who may or may not actually exist. She also claims to have spoken to a city council member, who, for no good reason, is not named.
Third, she does quote Council Member David Catania's remarks about the CFO's budget being larger than that of the federal OMB and the budget offices of Chicago and Los Angeles. Even a cursory analysis would have found that such a comparison is totally phony. The District is a city, state, county and school district. The CFO is responsible for the financial integrity of all of these functions, plus tax collection and managing bond purchases, pensions, savings plans and cash collections.
One must wonder why The Washington Examiner continues to publish these works of fiction under the guise of informed commentary.
David J. Umansky
Public affairs officer
Washington, D.C. Office of the Chief Financial Officer
Jonetta Rose Barras replies: I stand by my statements in my column -- the facts and my opinion. In over 25 years writing, I have never been accused of making up quotes or engaging in any other forms of fantasy journalism.
Those who can help should do so
As of now, Scranton, Pa., and three cities in California are bankrupt. Ask yourself this: If Republican President George Bush got his own treasury secretary, in a matter of hours, to get over 1 trillion dollars of taxpayers money to bail out the scoundrels on Wall-Street and the crooked bankers why can't the taxpayers money be used, now, to help these cities?
Use your head, Romney says reduced ... taxes on the rich will produce jobs, well we have had reduced taxes for over a decade, where are the jobs? In fact, right now, business is "sitting" on over 2 trillion dollars! Maybe if Romney and other millionaires would not avoid U.S. taxes by having Cayman Island tax avoidance schemes and Swiss Bank Accounts our deficit would not be as bad, each of the past 10 or more years we have constantly lost that money, while working class pays on all their hard earned money. Middle class having money to spend is the engine of our economy, not low taxes on the rich.