By Steve Hunley


City mayor raises taxes, cuts services

After having given police officers a well-deserved raise and asking the city council to inflict the largest property tax increase in Knoxville’s history, the first thing Mayor Indya Kincannon has done is cut services.  Kincannon announced last week Knoxville Police Department officers will no longer do accident reports unless there are injuries.

Kincannon has just set the table and invited chaos to dinner.  One doesn’t have to have ESP to look ahead and forecast increased hit-and-runs, the much greater probability of violence, and the rise of lawsuits resulting from the KPD no longer doing accident reports.  The fact is in better than 95% of all instances insurance companies, not to mention the courts, fault is determined by the police officer’s report.  In one sweeping decision, Indya Kincannon has declared the entire county to be one no fault insurance wasteland.  What that means for consumers is HIGHER INSURANCE RATES.  Quite likely MUCH higher rates.  Without the ability to determine who is at fault, consumers’ own insurance will kick in and the consumer will pay higher rates in the future.  The alternative is to take the matter to court, which means hiring a lawyer and risking the possibility of paying attorney fees, court costs and those of the other party if one loses.  Not a very appealing prospect for most folks.

The idea behind Kincannon’s silly announcement is that officers will be “out fighting crime.”  Really?  So, if someone runs a STOP sign and causes a crash but there is no injury is the offender going to be cited for it?  Is someone who is driving without insurance, which is illegal in the State of Tennessee, going to be cited in case of an accident?  Nope, not anymore if there is an accident and nobody is hurt.  Are illegal aliens driving without insurance or even a drivers’ license going to be cited?  No, not unless somebody is hurt.  And even when someone is hurt, it’s not always readily apparent at the scene of the accident, which is another reason liability matters.

Will the City of Knoxville enforce speed limits inside the city limits, or will the officers all be too busy fighting crime to issue citations?  Do citizens have nothing to fear about such seemingly minor traffic citations such as improper lane changes?  Have we seen the end of tickets altogether?

Without an officer present, are people going to be able to exchange information without incident?  Will those who are vulnerable like the elderly, women, or the like be taken advantage of?  Clearly The Great Incompetent’s latest decision is a truly bad one and certainly not in the interest of those who pay city taxes.  It is a terrible idea and downright hurtful to consumers in any number of ways, not the least of which is the resulting higher rates for insurance in Knox County.  Even those living outside the city limits but who drive inside the city will likely experience higher insurance rates.

Frankly, enforcing traffic laws is one of the responsibilities of an urban police department, which includes determining who is at fault in the instance of accidents.  The role of any police department is emblazoned on the sides of most police vehicles: To Protect & Serve.  Every modern police department, or sheriff’s department, has a division of officers who respond to accidents.

Both city residents and those living in Knox County should be outraged by Kincannon’s actions and protest it.  It ranks right up there with her decision to pull officers out of those schools inside the City of Knoxville before backing up and replacing them.  It was a stupid decision then and it is an unnecessary and stupid decision now.

The idea of increasing taxes and immediately cutting a vital service should be the source of anger to taxpayers and voters.

If anyone needed further evidence, this proves it’s not the county mayor who is a moron.


Herrera surfaces

After The Focus and many members of the local GOP wondered whatever happened to Daniel Herrera, a miracle occurred.  Like a garden gnome come magically to life, Herrera popped up at the Karns Republican Club last week.  And did Herrera exhort the party faithful to get out and elect the Republican ticket?  No!  Daniel regaled his audience with the wonders he has wrought during his time as party chair.  Among those many wonders was his open and vocally backing with donors’ money a slate of candidates in the city council races last year that got wiped out.  Herrera spent $20,000 to pay Charlie Kirk to come and speak at Lincoln Day.  Herrera just recently spent $5,000 for a table so he could be seen, along with Elaine Davis, at the Tennessee Republican Party’s Statesman’s Dinner.  Of course Davis is engaged in the middle of a primary and every member of Herrera’s leadership team is or has been running for office.

All of the ballyhoo for Erik Wiatr’s slate of city council candidates done by Daniel Herrera through the Knox County Republican Party came to nothing.  This year, with a GOP ticket actually running in the August general election, no cheerleading, no raising money, nothing.  Herrera’s wonders are reflected in the numbers.  Republican turnout this year is down from four years ago.  In the 2018 GOP primary in Knox County 32,108 Republicans voted in Early Voting.  This year, the count is 19,465.  None of that money was dedicated to electing Republican candidates during the general election.  Nor has Daniel poked his head up during the recent general election.

No GOP chairman during my lifetime has spent more money aggrandizing himself and done less for a general election ticket and the party.


Wrongway Krugman

Paul Krugman is a professor of economics at the City University of New York, as well as a columnist for the New York Times.  A supposed intellectual, Krugman is a walking, talking example of the dysfunction of the Left in this country.  Exactly why anyone would pay any attention to anything Paul Krugman says is beyond me.  The only thing Krugman seems to be good for is serving to point in the wrong direction.  The number of things Krugman has been wrong about would require a fair memory and a calculator to compute.

Krugman appeared on Brian Stetler’s show on CNN to double down on his assertion our economy is experiencing a boost from a “Biden boom.”  Krugman points to the number of jobs, yet fails to mention the job growth is largely from businesses reopening and re-staffing following the closure of the economy during the pandemic.  Professor Krugman stoutly denies we are in the midst of a recession.  Naturally, the Biden administration insists we aren’t in a recession, but perhaps in a period of transition.  The only transition I can see is from bad to worse.

Since taking office, Biden has pushed through the Democrat Congress a $1.9 trillion “American Rescue Plan” and $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill.  Congress seems poised to pass another green energy bill amounting to almost another trillion dollars.

Paul Krugman is the same loon who stated: “By 2005 or so, it will become clear that the Internet’s impact on the economy has been no more than a fax machine’s.”

Now Krugman comes along and says it doesn’t matter whether we are in a recession or not (while insisting we aren’t).  If there are any duo in the mainstream media who have less credibility than Paul Krugman and Brian Stetler, I can’t think of who they might be.  It was only two weeks ago Krugman published a column in the New York Times stating he had been wrong about inflation and he’s wrong again.  Krugman is also one of those economists who expect inflation to slow down.

Unfortunately, virtually everyone who wants to debate whether or not our country is in a recession is so far removed from reality, they have no idea.  None of the people involved in the discussion are worried about putting gas in their cars to get to work, or keeping food on the table.  When it’s merely a theoretical exercise, it’s pretty easy to tell the listeners we are facing a recession.

Of course these are also the very same people who are considering a bill pending before Congress to give a tax break to families making $300,000 annually to purchase an electric car by raising taxes on working people.

The only “Biden boom” I can see is where he blew the economy to kingdom come with his spending on a wish list of Leftist theories.


No Surprise Here

The statistics are in and the cities in the United States with the highest murder/violent crime rates are Milwaukee, St. Louis, Rochester, New York, New Orleans, Oakland, California, and Chicago.  The study names 31 cities and one thing they all have in common, aside from sky-high crime rates?  Leftist Democrat mayors and City Councils, there’s nary a Republican mayor among the bunch.