The State of Rhode Island's bigotry against Barrington continues. If you ever wonder why people in the rest of the state don't like us, you need look no further than the pages of the Providence Journal.
On Thursday's Journal front page there was an unfortunate headline: " In Barrington, Formula for Trouble." This leads into Linda Borg' grossly inaccurate coverage of our financial town meeting. Not only was the article published eight days later, hardly making it front page news anymore, but the reporter is either dumb as a door knob, or didn't attend the same meeting I did. And since she quoted me, albeit completely out of context, I assume she was there or at least watched the tape.
For those of you who were not there, or did not read the Barrington Patch or the Barrington Times subsequent articles, the only real discussion was on the topic of the looming state pension deficit crisis, and how the state manipulating financial assumptions will make our contributions go up putting stress on our budgets in the future.
It was repeatedly pointed out by, well everyone, that Barrington's pensions are in better shape than almost everyone in the state, that both the schools and the town are well run financially, and the fear is the whole state pension crisis will bring down the state, may affect us as well. But Barrington if left on its own was in sound shape. Or at least better than most!
But if you read the Journal article, which was full of inaccurate quotes and wrong numerical facts, you would come away that Barrington's pensions are the problem bringing down the state! In Ms. Borg's fantasy world of unicorns and magical wizards, Barrington is worried, and is waiting for a "state bailout" for our pension issue!
Ms. Borg ,you have it completely backwards!! We are not worried if the state will bail us out. We are scared to death that we are going to have to bail out the rest of the state! The state and other municipalities' pension problems, some of which are 10-20 fold worse than ours, are what have us worried!
We don't want a bailout from the state! What we really want is to secede from the state to protect ourselves from the mounting $50,000 liability on each and every man woman and child In Barrington from the poorly run and poorly funded state mandated pension disaster!
If you want to know the truth about where the problem is, just ask Moody's rating service. There Barrington is rated AA, and the state just got downgraded to negative.
Now why do you suppose that is? Why can we borrow at the best rates, and the state has to pay higher interest? Because we have sound financial management. Is there going to be a problem next year? You bet! But it won't be as bad as the rest of the state.
But Ms. Borg writes what people believe, and this article, full of trash, was even quoted this week on Lively Experiment by some smart people. People believe the lies about us so easily. The Journal is one big reason that when we go out of town and tell people we are from Barrington, people roll their eyes! They have read so much crap that is untrue.
This is not the first article of Linda Borg's I have taken issue with: five months ago, when I was running for office, I took the unusual step of filing an official complaint with her editor. She made 11 factual errors in the course of four paragraphs she wrote on my candidacy. In 30 years of being quoted by various newspapers and TV, that is the record (My favorite is that I have lived in town for 17 years but served on the Nayatt PTO for 22 That would be a neat trick. You would have thought that she or her editor would have caught that one!) She was the worst I have ever come across, and I have come across a lot of reporters making as much noise as I do. The Journal should be ashamed to publish her articles!
As long as she covers us, we will continue to get bad and inaccurate press that will always make us look bad! Do the guys at the Journal think, I mean just to be fair, they could possibly reassign her to Little Compton or Jamestown for a while.
Aren't they all supposed to be rich too? Let them suffer bad coverage for a while! Give us a break.