Are you watching the same city council I am? (See "Ever Thought About Running for Office?" River Cities' Reader issue #644, August 1-7, 2007.) You're choosing to support the worst of the worst!
Ray Ambrose has literally pounded his fist in the council chambers and claimed, "The only job of the city is to fix potholes and fund police and fire!" Wow - that philosophy is going to really move us ahead in the competitive market for economic growth. The Reader complains regularly of our struggle to grow, yet you support a man who year in and year out votes against development and creative methods of attracting new business. Just look at his voting record; it speaks for itself.
Hamerlinck is a slick-talking populist who often grandstands and speaks in the third person, and has shown many times his willingness to say one thing and do another. He panders to whatever audience happens to be in front of him that night. He's the perfect sound bite but has little to say. He's voted "no" on about every single chance we've had to create economic growth. Case in point: the 53rd Street development that is still sitting empty because he and "the five" thought we weren't offered enough money for the land. News flash! No taxes at all are made if it's empty for 20 years!
Meyer rambles incoherently for 15 minutes at a time, often losing track of his own point by the time he tries to get to it. Not to mention he often vehemently opposes his own downtown constituency, which he is supposed to represent. This is highlighted by his many snide comments regarding parking and other matters, to which he then offers either absurd ideas or no solution at all.
"Professor" Bill likes to tout his economics education, but when was the last time you saw this guy come up with a detailed solution for a budget? Oh wait - you haven't, because he's all talk! When put in front of a panel of local businesses some months ago, he completely froze when asked what ideas he had to help grow the economy or create an improved budget.
And perhaps most egregious of all, every one of these guys has refused to remove Van Fossen for fear of losing their own political power with the regular 5-5 ties. Putting politics over the removal of a convicted drunk on our city council is simply unforgivable.
For an organization that prides itself on intelligent and responsible government, I'm shocked that you would throw praise in the direction of these fools. If anyone is guilty of holding back this community economically, it's the very list you've provided for us to try and keep in office!
I can only hope our voting population is smarter than you are when it comes to recognizing what's good for our community. To me, you're just preaching for change, and like these "good" council members, you are full of hot air with no real solutions to the problems you so love to identify and complain about.
From the River Cities' Reader Web site
Don't Tell Me What to Buy
I agree with James M. Taylor's commentary about the CAFE laws, but not only for his reasons. (See "CAFE Battle Rages on Capitol Hill," River Cities' Reader Issue 644, August 1-7, 2007.) First, I feel that anyone who is old enough to drive is old enough to make up their own mind. I don't want government bureaucrats telling me what I should buy.
Another reason I'm against CAFE is because of the attitude of others. From December 1986 until March 1994, I owned a subcompact (I won't mention the make or model) that got 40 miles per gallon, only to have it called a "Tinkertoy," as well as being accused of "extreme cruelty" for forcing my wife to make do with a small car. Therefore, I will never buy a small car again.
Most importantly, there is one thing that government cannot change: No motor vehicle, regardless of size or "safety" items, will ever be completely safe as long as there are incompetent drivers on the road.
In last week's article on the new theatrical venue the Green Room ("Green Party," River Cities' Reader issue #645), Into the Woods was mistakenly referenced as making its area debut; the show was presented by Quad City Music Guild in 1997. Also, in the same issue's review of Music Guild's Anything Goes ("Ship of Fools"), Jane Schmidt was cited as playing Erma's mother, when she actually plays Hope Harcourt's. Mike Schulz apologizes for the errors. (Not the best week for me, huh, Music Guild?)