Saturday, April 23, 2005

Stop Art Hall “Signs” Are A Great Idea

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying stopping Art Hall is great idea. I personally don’t care if you stop Art Hall or not. I don’t have a preference one way or another. What I am saying is the “signs” are a great idea.

Did you ever have that sensation that you were so frustrated with an elected official, any official, that you didn’t care who replaced them so long as they just threw the current bum out? I have. How many of you have felt this way so strongly that you’d be willing to spend a couple hundred dollars to send him packing?

You don’t really like either of the opposition candidates all that much, and if you give money to one of them you risk alienating the other challenger. The two challengers will start to campaign against one another rather than the incumbent. This works in the incumbent’s favor. The most affective thing you can do to oust a sitting official that has more than one challenger is not to give money to either candidate. If the current bum has got to go, spend your money on your own signs that just say, “Throw the Bum Out.” I can’t believe I never thought of it!

Art Hall has a point, if you do this you should put your name on all of them so people know that if you have a notorious personal beef with the incumbent over a zoning deal, then people can know to take that into account when they consider your opinion. That’s only fair. (For those of you who are going to protest that this author uses a pseudonym, if you read carefully I have never and will never tell you who to vote for -- or not to vote for. I am skeptical of anyone who seeks power.)

It seems to me in District 8, Chris Pettit wants you to think Art Hall is a bum. Your job is to find out, “who the heck is Chris Pettit and why does he think Art’s a bum?” Don’t just believe the signs, do your homework. Chris Pettit is suing the City about a zoning dispute on which Art voted against him and in favor of a neighborhood association. The interesting tidbit here is that Chris’s lawyer in that suit is David Earl and Associates. David Earl is the biggest lobbyist in town, he has more lobbying business than the other entire registered lobbyist core put together. His client list reads like a who’s who of the local development, real estate and the concrete establishment. He is the character people are referring to when they say, you have to pay to play – David Earl and Associates is whom you pay.

Art says that he is standing up to the “business as usual” crowd and hence he has made enemies who are running a stealth campaign against him. He may be right, or he may not, I don’t know. All I know is Art apparently thwarted the “pay to play” guy and on principle, I kind of like that. Or did he? Maybe Art just shut down Chris Pettit so Chris would have to go to Earl and make his deposit. I don’t know. Either way you pay David Earl as a lobbyist and the Council votes your way, or you don’t pay what resembles protection and you have to come back to the Don if you want to sue for a chance at round two. No matter what, David Earl seems to get his money and whatever a Councilperson does ends up looking fishy. That Earl and Associates both lobbies and sues the City for multiple powerful clients simultaneously appears to be a conflict of interest at best, and a way of intimidating our elected officials and shaking down people with business before them at worst.

On the other hand, I really like the idea of the signs. I mean just the signs. David Earl can go jump in the river. But, darn those signs are a good idea! I really really wish I’d thought of them.

Maybe we should pool our resources and buy some signs that just say,

Stop David Earl.”


At 11:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So I like your analysis, but I have already figured out who you are....A bit suprised but not really. Anyway I suppose I will keep it secret for you, I don't think you want people to I guess I will respect that.

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