I think I've been marginalized!

I'm a crackpot. I must be. I am starting to sound like one, I know that. I'm constantly raising questions about local government and our Mayor, who was a frequent poster on this and other blogs during her campaign, won't "come around here no more."

And, since I am a crackpot, I decided to act like one. As crazy as it sounds, I think it has to be some sort of mind control. Our City Manager exercises some sort of mind control over the City Commission.

I mean, really. How else does one explain statistics like these? In 2006 and the first 6 months of 2007, our City Commission held 318 votes at their bi-weekly meetings. (Ok, 35 of those were votes to adjourn, so we'll remove those). So that leaves 283 votes.

Anyone want to venture a guess as to how many of those 283 votes were unanimous?


Yup, 6 times out of 283, all 5 City Commissioners voted exactly the same way. Still think my mind control theory sounds crazy?

Roughly 98 percent of the time the motions proffered, typically by the staff, passed without a dissenting vote. (I don't even think the Republicans or Democrats in Congress can ensure such a strong voting bloc.)

Color me crazy (or crackpot) but isn't the City Commission elected to represent the citizens of this community? Is this community so homogeneous, so somnolent, that on virtually every issue with which we are confronted there is no dissent?

Ok, then, the question begs me: Which of our Commissioners are wild and crazy and vote against the majority?

The winners are Diane Jovick-Kuntz and Mayor Dona Stebbins with 3 votes each against the majority. Commissioner Sandy Hinz comes in second with 1 vote against the majority. This means that our wild hairs, our most cantankerous crotchety members of the Commission go out on a limb 1% of the time.

How many times, then, did a dissenting vote carry the day? Zero. Zilch. Nada.

I'm tellin' ya, it's mind control.


Anonymous said...

Gee Guy, you've become the new Randall P. McMurphy! Watch out for nurse Ratched!.........and just take your meds like a good little patient!


mary jolley said...

I watched the replay last night of the last City Meeting. The camera seemed to spend a lot of time on Donna's face, if she was smiling. When she said, well hissed, "IT is not about Highwood generating station." Right after Lawton said it. The camera was too far away to see her face. The recast had a line of type, something new that said, "redited for rebroadcast." Or something very much like that. The replay showed pictures of the Witsoe property. Not something the live audience got to see since the city removed the large screen.
I enjoyed watching the guy with the motorcycle problem put Com. Diane JK in her place. The mayor weirily said they might have to pass an other ordinance. What a tough job they have. Passing this passing that no wonder they have no time for public comment or even a quick scan of the documents, staff reports and such. By the way staff reports are about one step above gibberish lately - if they relate to SME and millions.
The Mayor's introduction to the public comment time, "Remember you have three minutes, you can ask for more time and I will allow it if you are making good points." Perhaps the necessity of making good points is why the elected officials are close to mute.

HRL said...

No,really, this is an important observation, this and the one in another post about the fact that the Commissioners are so uninvolved and incurious, and never ask any questions. We have tried to figure out what is going on, and I think it's that they get together beforehand and hammer out what position they're all going to take (you know they have two meetings before the actual public meeting. People may come to those meetings (although this is rare), but they are not allowed to participate). I don't know where these people get their information, I don't know if they debate questions; but by the time they come before the public they don't care what anyone says, they know what they are going to do and they just do it all together. This means there is no true opportunity for citizens to convey information or influence how the city is governed. Iin other words, no democracy.