Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Phil Hardberger: Yet Another Business as Usual Candidate

When Phil Hardberger talks about bringing an NFL franchise to San Antonio he’s just shining us on. In a recent interview with the SA Business Journal Phil states:

"We have talked and I have asked Red if he would be willing to help me explore the possibilities of whether the NFL will truly consider us."

Hardberger says he will commit, within his first 100 days in office, to seek a meeting with the NFL and determine if San Antonio has a legitimate shot at landing a team. If it does, Hardberger says he would make a real push for such a franchise.

"If it's not a real possibility," he says, "then we go on about our business elsewhere."

Renovation costs for the Alamodome will no doubt be a factor in any NFL discussions. (No doubt they will, Phil) But Hardberger says the city has no shot if it isn't willing to take the matter seriously.

Here are the operative words in the above quote, “explore,” “truly,” “legitimate,” “real,” “elsewhere.” and “no shot.” That’s a lot of qualifiers that amount to what Hardberger is really saying, namely, “I don’t want to be a buzz-kill folks, but fat chance.” That a politician is reluctant to just deliver bad news in a straightforward manner is not much of a surprise.

Further on in the same interview at SABJ, Hardberger drops a bomb on all those that think he is their “great white hope” for a return to integrity at City Hall. For all you Schubert bashers out there (as regular readers know, that includes this writer) don’t look to Phil to be your savior, as this quote from the interview suggests:

Equally destructive as the effects of term limits, according to Hardberger, has been "the exclusion of the business community from the affairs of the city." That combination, he contends, could pave a certain path to disaster.

"San Antonio is a city with a $1.5 billion budget," Hardberger explains. "That's by definition a Fortune 500 company. But it's being run by people who, by and large, have no real business experience. I want to put business back in the business of city government in San Antonio."

Here are the operative phrases from this quote, “exclusion of the business community,” “no real business experience,” “business back in the business of city government.” It just sends chills down your spine, don’t it?

It is not the business of government to declare war on the business community, nor is it the business of government to climb into bed with them. Presumably by “no real business experience” Phil is referring to the utter lack of competence that pervades the City Council. About that he’s correct. What I am not clear on is how a trial lawyer whose principal “business experience” is derived from suing businesses is going to bring “real business experience” to City Hall.

“Exclusion of the business community...bring business back into the business of city government,” give me a break Phil. Where do you think David Earl and Associates keeps their cot, if not at City Hall? Judging by the coincidence between a list of Earl’s clients, Schubert’s campaign contributors and the largest contributors on Hardberger’s CFR, I’ll wager the Business, Lobbyist and Council Member orgy that goes on Downtown will continue uninterrupted.

Of course if you are an optimist, maybe you'll conclude he was just pandering. Afterall, he was talking to the Business Journal.


At 7:13 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i think he would bre a good mayo


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