Friday, January 18, 2013

Susana Martinez calls for tax cuts

 KOAT in Albuquerque reports on NM Gov. Susana Martinez's State of the State speech this week.

Martinez is urging state lawmakers to spend "surplus tax dollars wisely" and approve a package of tax cuts to offset uncertainly in Washington, D.C.

Martinez told state lawmakers Tuesday in her State of the State address that diversifying that state's economy was needed in order to protect New Mexico from a "dysfunctional" federal government.

The governor asked the Legislature to approve a reduction in the corporate income tax rate, as well as other economic development incentives to make New Mexico more competitive with neighboring states in recruiting and retaining private businesses.

Martinez and lawmakers agree that New Mexico needs to start diversifying what has long been an economy that heavily depends on government spending, including military installations as well as Los Alamos and Sandia national laboratories.

While we're on the topic of New Mexico and Los Alamos, let's please drift onto a tangent for a second and talk about Robert Oppenheimer and the explosion of the atomic bomb at the Trinity test site -- because this really is fascinating (in case you're curious, the story is from this wonderful biography of him).

Contrary to popular opinion AND the famous play based on him (which he hated), the left-wing Oppenheimer was far more ambivalent and, at times, pleased with the bomb than portrayed.

In fact, when the right wing scientist Edward Teller circulated a petition before the test, urging the U.S. to show the Japanese what the bomb could do so they'd surrender before it dropped, it was Oppenheimer who nixed the idea, saying "What do they know about Japanese psychology? How can they judge the way to end the war."

And also, contrary to popular opinion, Oppenheimer likely didn't say "I am become death, the destroyer of worlds" after the test.

In fact, one week after the test, he told fellow scientists he just wished they had developed the bomb earlier so they could have used it against the Germans, and he saw it as the ultimate deterrent from future wars. 

"Lots of boys not grown up yet will owe their life to it," he said.

Now, having mentioned all that, he wasn't without deep ambivalence. It was a total head vs. heart thing, and someone heard him saying on the day the bomb first dropped over Japan saying, "those poor little people, those poor little people."

And when he met later with Harry Truman, he said "Mr. President, I feel I have blood on my hands," then left.

Truman then turned to someone and said: "Blood on his hands, damn it, he hasn't half as much blood on my hands as I have. You just don't go around bellyaching about it.... I don't want to see that son-of-a-bitch in this office ever again!"

Sobering stuff.

Okay now back to 2016 -- you can check out Susana's speech below.