— Jaime Dayé Miyares
My father, a Cuban émigré, vowed to never vote for another Democrat after the Bay of Pigs. He has held true to this pledge up to this day.
His rationale is that Democrats never hire who knows what they’re doing, or how to do the task. They hire or place individuals who look good, whether they have the requisite skills or even know what they are doing.
I tell him that happens in both parties, and he says look around.
Our family tolerated Fulgencio Batista, because since we had tobacco and coffee fields and kicked up donations, the government allowed us to maintain and keep property that had been in our family since the 1800s.
However, when Fidel Castro came into power, the history of how we acquired our land didn’t matter. It was who we knew that decided whether we kept our land, and what we knew didn’t matter.
I am in no way comparing our state or federal government to Cuba, but I did look around to find out who got where.
This is what I found, and this could be why we have such issues with the budget, unemployment, furloughs and other issues in our state.
Many people in our government structure really have no tangible experience, education or otherwise, in the departments they govern. Like my father says, “Stop hiring attorneys to do the jobs of accountants.”
It’s great if you have a military background, went to a prestigious military school, have a law degree, but how does that make you the person to address the unemployment issues our state is facing?
Look around. Look at the organization charts, and look and see how many people in positions of authority really have the requisite skills that would be required of any of us.
It’s like my father’s argument, it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.
In his mind, that’s why there are problems up and down the chain. His analogy? “They wouldn’t just place you on fries at McDonald’s if you didn’t have the training. But they would hire you to be over a division in state government.”
It’s not quite that extreme, but if you saw some of the backgrounds, education, skills and abilities of some of the people in these positions, you would have to scratch your head and recognize that this could be the reason we have so many issues with our budget.
I value education, but just because your education allows you to tell me the origins of the Samoan step dance, how does that translate into or allow you to be placed in a position over departments where the main focus is figuring out how to decrease our state’s unemployment rate?
It seems as though every month there’s a re-evaluation of the budget. State revenue forecasts are off by millions. Our governor needs to recognize that all of this re-evaluation of the budget is because we don’t have the forensic accountants or economists doing what they should be doing, evaluating our budget and making recommendations from a field or background from which they have expertise.
To the contrary, we have people who might be good golfers, or tell good stories having authority over policies that affect us all — to our detriment.
But at least we will know the origins of the Samoan step dance and can maybe incorporate that in the unemployment shuffle that many of us will face.
Lucius Daye, a service-connected disabled veteran, is working on his MBA degree from Syracuse University. A member of The Olympian’s Diversity Panel, he can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.