CTA meeting motivates me to go looking for some new council candidates

14 Oct

Yesterday’s meeting of Chico Taxpayers was great because, for the third month in a row, we had new people come in to the meeting, with questions about  our city government.  It is always depressing to me when I think people aren’t paying attention to what’s going on, and it’s a real boot up to meet a new person or two who are ready to work to get our city back onto a rational path.  This is why I have this group – to get the information out there, find out what’s true, what’s wrong, how to fix it. 

I have to admit time and time again, I don’t have all the answers. I don’t understand a lot of what goes on Downtown, it’s all Greek to me Baby.  And they like it that way – of course they use that thick “educated” language to leave us OUT.  

Here’s a good “Book in Common,” – “This Book is NOT Required,” by Inge Bell. I read this book when it was new, but I see it is still available on Amazon.com for a pretty hefty price, so people must be reading it. Bell explains how language is used to keep our society “stratified,” or divided into distinct class groups. Education or lack thereof is used to keep poor people poor, and rich people rich, simple as that. The “educated” speak their elite language and the rest of us are left fumbling through our dictionaries. I was an English major, and I struggle to keep up with the Legis-lese they speak Downtown. Well, I do know some words too.  Those reports are intentionally obfuscated to keep the public continually in fits about what’s going on. We know something funky is going down, but we don’t have the legal tools to figure it out or know what to do about it. 

Yesterday our little discussion group concluded, this is just what Brian Nakamura and council are counting on – we’re too poor to get a lawyer. We talked about how they know exactly what they’re doing, they know they’re treading on thin legality, but they’ve calculated the risk of being busted, and they’ve figured it to be pretty low.  Just like Hemet, and all those other little towns.  Their friends – the Esplanade League and the Friends of Bidwell Park, have way more money than us, and they’re not afraid to sue. Friends of the Park has cost the city millions.  That’s what it takes to get these people to listen – a lawyer.  I know a mean ass mutha, but he makes no bones about his price – he’s told me many times, “don’t call me until you’re ready to take out a second mortgage…” 

As an example, look how many times the Chico Conservation Voters have violated election laws – Michael Worley caught red-handed sending out illegal mailers with a facetious return address, Dave Guzzetti redacted for neglecting to fill out forms correctly. Worley paid a few thousand in fines – well, I’m guessing his Chico Democrat friends paid it for him. – but that’s it, right back on the road, probably dreaming up the illegal mailer he will send out in 2014. Guzzetti was not fined, just had his wrist slapped. That snatch sniffer will never change.  I’m waiting for him to start a fight with me at the Farmer’s Market so I can mop up the parking lot with his guinea ass. 

We talked yesterday about how civility has been thrown out of politics around here. Well, that’s funny to me, having had a few experiences here that reminded me of my childhood in Glenn County. There was the Esplanade League mob that tried to run me and my family out of that council meeting. There was the time Jan Sneed tried to rope me like a calf at a CARD meeting. Both times people came at me PHYSICALLY. Laurel Blankenship’s daughter spit all over my face. 

Chico is not a civil town, and I don’t think it ever has been. It’s always been a “political hotbed,” I remember reading about it when I was a kid.  And it’s totally koyaanisqatsi. We have conservatives who don’t conserve, like the conservative majority that built all that crap through the 80’s and 90’s. Now we’ve suffered a “liberal” majority that has waged an unprecedented “war on the poor” and made our town too expensive for working class people to live in.  We talked yesterday about how the “liberals” aren’t true to traditional values of raising quality of life for EVERYBODY. No, they’ve enriched themselves by stealing from the taxpayers, taking any “discretionary” money we have, and then trying to tell us how to spend that with their “shop local” and sustainability bullshit. 

Yesterday we argued about how we should “handle” these people. When we ask questions or demand action, we are routinely held off by the forehead as they do what they want. How do we make them listen? Civil disobedience? Un-civil disobedience? Sue had a good suggestion – know your facts, keep your head, and don’t let them make you mad. She gave examples of how people had behaved toward her when she’d been out picketing. She suggested, have a partner who is ready to step in when you get frustrated. This would also work at the dais for council meetings – get together ahead of a meeting, talk about what you want to say to council, then get a partner or a few other people who will go to the podium to finish your thoughts that you couldn’t get in three minutes. Plan ahead, one person to pick up where the other left off.  

One thing that bugs all of us about speaking at council meetings is the way they respond to you after you can longer talk. Oftentimes certain councilmembers use this privilege to berate the speaker and tell everybody they were lying or wrong. Council members are allowed to babble on at will, spreading whatever bullshit lies they come up with  We need to start getting up during “Business from the Floor” to respond to their snotty comments. We have to start beating them at their own game – beating people down. 

That doesn’t mean name calling – although, I do enjoy name calling – it means, know your facts and have them at the ready.  Learn to argue with a smile, it helps you to keep from getting mad enough to lose your stride. Learn to look them directly in the eye – it’s intimidating, and it helps you to know what they’re thinking. Laugh out loud when they say something preposterous, and then say, “that’s preposterous!” 

There is an election coming up, and if we want to get rid of these fools, and I mean Sorensen too if he doesn’t wise up pretty quick, we need to get ready. The first thing would be to find at least two good candidates to go up against Goloff and Gruendl. I don’t know if I can support Coolidge – his campaign last time was pretty flakey and lame. His website had all these icons but none of them really told us anything. I didn’t see him at meetings, and I got tired of his excuse that his business keeps him busy – too busy to be a good councilor? How often would we hear that excuse, and how many times would he have to recuse himself from votes because of his various business interests? And how much of his interest in this job is self-interest? Too many questions.

I’d like to see a young person who has been watching the issues for a few years. I’d say Mark Herrera but he has not proven himself to me as an independent thinker. He’s a “John Redcorn” – tries to wax hippy philosophy all the time, but really has no working understanding of city business, it’s all sunshine and rainbowsand “can’t we all just get along and pay our taxes?” He’s a dimestore hippy, got one on every corner around here.

We need somebody who has actually been attending meetings. I guess I’ll start hitting all the meetings again and see what I come up with. Should I take a lantern? 













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