Call it overly cautious. Or, overly anxious. But the Niagara County Legislature’s overture to the Buffalo Bills to consider downtown Niagara Falls if the football team needs a place to land is a bit, let’s say, unnecessary.
The resolution, as reported, points out that Niagara Falls has large expanses of vacant property – that can’t be said enough – close to the international border. That’s a good point about location, location, location: it would be a shorter trip for Canadian fans, which is one up on the current Ralph Wilson Stadium in Orchard Park.
But we’re guessing that since the Bills have shown no official interest in a new stadium and since the state and Erie County are dumping $200 million into upgrades at the Ralph, the team probably won’t be taking Niagara County up on its generous offer. Legislator Jason A. Zona, the lead sponsor, said it was just a symbolic gesture because they really, really don’t want the Bills to leave Western New York. Neither do we … no matter how they actually play the game.
What’s in a name? An awful lot; at least that looks suspiciously true in the case of the Barack H. Obama Foundation, which gained speedy passage, by Internal Revenue Service standards, of tax-exempt status to raise money for good works in Kenya.
Seems the IRS approved charitable status for the foundation, run by President Obama’s brother and named for his father, in about a month. Quick work compared to groups that have been waiting for more than a year.
The Barack H. Obama Foundation has also been accused by the National Legal and Policy Center of being a scofflaw. Tough day at the office for the group, but it has to expect extra scrutiny from some quarters. As for the IRS, the agency needs to work harder at appearing to be unbiased.
For a caricature of foolish consistency, we give you Sen. Tom Coburn. The Oklahoma Republican opposed disaster funding for New York and New Jersey following Superstorm Sandy last year, and was among the guilty parties for delaying crucial help after the storm. Now, he is saying his own state should be denied disaster funding following the tornado that devastated Moore, Okla., unless corresponding cuts are made elsewhere.
For decades, the standard in American life was that we pitch in immediately after a disaster to ease suffering and help put a region back on its feet. It’s what a nation of good-hearted people should do, but with Sandy, that standard was violated.
This is crazy. If anyone should be complaining about help for Oklahoma, it should be New Yorkers angered by the slow response to Sandy, but there hasn’t been a hint of a protest. Coburn should take a lesson.