Mitt puts style before substance, as usual
I've said it before and I'm sure I'll say it again: Mitt Romney seems to think that no matter how many horrible budget cuts he makes, everything will be OK if he just does enough photo shoots and publicity stunts. For example: his latest bit of symbolism is making personal phone calls to state workers. From today's Globe ("Governor enjoys getting personal to salute workers"):
Since he took office, Romney has introduced a range of proposals that don't make state employees happy: he has floated plans to privatize their pensions; force them to pay more for health insurance; and lay off thousands of workers.Wow, a whole half-hour of personal phone calls? Boy, that REALLY makes up for all those job cuts! Unsurprisingly, this comes from Romney's business background:
But he also has spent a half-hour or two every week making thank-you calls to state workers and appointees. Aides say he'll sometimes decide, with little warning, to pop into his constituent service office, to chat with the letter-readers and phone answerers. Or he'll walk down the hall to the offices of the staff budget writers, to the surprise of the state troopers who guard him.
The idea, Romney said, came from an advice-for-managers book, penned years ago by consulting firm gurus. It preached the theory of ''management by walking around,'' Romney said: When the boss comes by with praise, the troops tend to feel good.In other words: he seems to imagine that no matter how badly he treats state workers, he can make it all OK with one of his Ken-doll smiles? Fat chance:
State workers' morale could surely use a boost, in these weeks of belt-tightening and bad economic news. Union leaders are fuming over Romney's proposed 2004 budget. John Templeton, president of Service Employees International Union Local 509, one of the largest public employees' unions, said his members' morale is the lowest he's seen in 30 years.And no amount of personal messages left on answering machines is going to change that.