Monday, January 17, 2005

Of Smears, Smugness and "Smurks"

"Enjoy the insult as you deliver it, before you learn its cost."
Mason Cooley (b. 1927), U.S. aphorist.
City Aphorisms, Eighth Selection, New York (1991).

One of the reasons that I've been finding it difficult to blog the past week, is because of the sheer number of calls that I've been taking from citizens outraged by the propaganda piece weakly named "The Tulsa Tribunal," that wasmailed to my constituents.

I don't think the authors of this campaign piece intended this to be taken as a real periodical. Why? Because not even the Tulsa World in full Gang-Of-Five slander mode would allow for four pages that mentioned "Medlock" in every headline. What is interesting is that so much text could be written with so few facts.

I have been around political campaigns, and all whining aside, I have to say that this is one of the more vitriolic direct mailers I've ever encountered. I think even Brad Carson and Tom Coburn would say "The Tulsa Tribunal" (fans affectionately call it "The 'Bunal") is an excessive excercise in political "piling on."

But don't just take my word for it. Click here to read a unsolicited post to the forums, by a contributor from my district. The following are some excerpts:

"Waiting for me on the kitchen table this evening was my copy of the 'Tulsa Tribunal'. Has anyone else seen or read this waste of good toilet tissue? Man! I thought the World was slanted in their presentation - compared to this rag, the World is middle-of-the-road. Presented to you (for your amusement, I assume) by the fine folks at the Coalition for Responsible Government."

"Hey, CfRG, you didn't have much of a sale with me before. After receiving this C**P, your credibility has been flushed and is well on it's was to the Arkansas River. This is a cheap shot and a low blow. You obviously are pandering to the least common denominator - any adult that can actually think would see right through this. You're betting on stirring up the lowest common denominator to push your recall effort through. Don't bother bringing any facts before us when, surely, emotions will suffice."

"Hey Chris, I can't say I'm particularly a fan of yours but I'm behind you on this one (and, I'm a voter in your district)."
OK...sure...this is a focus group of one...purely anecdotal. But the statements above were simply a handy link from the web, that echoes (albeit rather calmly by comparison to some) most of the calls that I've received from angry voters.

Can the CfRG truly be this out of touch with voters? Did they not hear all of the relief the average citizen felt just two months ago, when the elections were over and we could stop being barraged by character assassinating attack ads? Can you say backlash?

I'm fighting the urge to send out as a response, a single, black and white postcard with block lettering simply saying,

"Oh yeah? So's your old man!"

The 'Bunal uses every unflattering photograph purposely published during recent months by our friends at the Tulsa World. It's a long shot that the World will ever sue their buddies over copyright infringement. However, the masthead also sports both the official seals of the State of Oklahoma and the City of Tulsa. I think former mayor Susan Savage, as Secretary of State would have to complain for Oklahoma. I know current mayor Bill LaFortune would have to request that interim city attorney Alan Jackere pursue the CfRG for the city. Needless to say, I'm not holding my breath. Besides, any litigation in this regard would simply be attributed as yet another "terrorist tactic," I'm sure.

Bottom line is, the character assissination isn't going to stop any time soon.


Kane said...

Fourteen years have passed since the great sell of representation of the nine districts and the cry still can be heard of “we will have part time councilors to eliminated professional politicians and ward politics.” We passed the amendments on the premise that we could establish a more economy system protecting our future of constant searchs for new taxes from the citizens. It was implied by common law that a councilor would be an elector in the district for 90 days prior to applying and remain as resident as long as he represented the people. There is no limit as the number of meeting councilors must attend. Thus unless the door was closed on residency then he could travel the world at the taxpayer expense. We set the salary at $12,000 yearly but gave the councilor authority to raise their salary any time they felt like that was not enough pay for their part time obligation.

Government, invented by the Greeks, has fail because it becomes not representing those who support it but it creates an identity of its own which fundamentally overburdens citizens with increased taxes to support their causes.

You have felt only the cold air of the iceberg and it is not in sight yet. If they are mailing the flyers then you can get a copy from the post office of who signed for the mailing permit. As you are aware Darla used direct card mailing which can be real effective if is constructed in such a way as it becomes pleasant to the eye..

On thing that should be included in distributing any tax money, the right for the councilor to have a private audit made of how the money is spent is very necessary.

They have fired only their first shot. Button up your flak jacket. You have a good start if you can keep the charge going. They have the keys to the city coffers indirectly.

Anonymous said...

I'm not in Chris Medlock or Jim Mautino's city council district, so I haven't received a copy of the Tulsa Tribunal.

Since I can't vote on the Recall, the Recall people are at least smart enough not to waste their Recall funds sending me a copy.

Nonetheless, I would like to read a copy of the Tribunal, to see the slant being put on their Recall.

Anonymous said...

The Shakepearean tragedy, in Five Acts, playing itself out in regards to the Recall effort makes me question one central thing about the Recall personages:

Why is the Tulsa World, the Chamber, GTAR, the Homebuilders Association, the Mayor, Mssrs. Davidson and Haschke (methinks fronting for Bob Poe, who is fronting for the Mayor, who is in turn fronting for the entrenched local financial interests) so VEHEMENT in their fight with Councilors Medlock and Mautino over what appears on the surface to be very MINOR policy differences.

Let's review the "High Crimes & Misdeamenors" of Councilors Medlock & Mautino:

1. They questioned why City of Tulsa ratepayers should pay for a water line to a competing suburb in Owasso.

2. They called for a Council-sponsored investigation into what was already pretty well-known to be a mismanaged Tulsa Airport (TAA and TAIT).

3. They asked to see an appraisal on a property being taken by the City through Emiment Domain.

4. Mr. Mautino questioned why homeowners had to go DIRECTLY to District Court to contest a Board of Adjustment decision. In lieu of a contentious City Council decision to vest BOA Review authority in the hands of the council which he was advocating, he compromised and agreed to let INCOG "study" it, first for 60 days, and now for another 30 days.

5. The Gang of 4.5 declined to re-appoint two of Susan Savage's appointees, which were long-serving (and connected) lawyers to a couple of local Authorities. However, the Mayor could have theoretically left these two individuals in place FOREVER under the flaws in the City Charter, and actually NEVER had to ask that they be re-appointed. He left one in place for over 18 months after his term expired, and these Authority members could legally keep participating in all Authority decisions, potentially for as long as they live.

6. The Gang of 4.5 refused to annex 23 square miles in North Tulsa that the city cannot currently afford to extend city services to.

7. They ASK questions about city policies, city spending and city priorities.

It just makes me wonder WHAT some people associated with city government (both within and outside the city government) don't want questions being asked about...................

Are they HIDING something?


Larry Mocha
Paula Marshall Chapman
Charles Norman
Jim Orbison
Bob Parmele
Jim Cameron
Lou Reynolds
Richard Studenny
Bob Poe
Jon Davidson
Herb Haschke

And, are THEY hiding something........?

Anonymous said...

Is something being hidden behind the mirrors? Are the taxpayer's be taken for a ride?


Anonymous said...

The Mayor clearly wants Alan Jackere as the next City Attorney. The Mayor is willing to violate the City Charter and Personnel Policies and Procedures Manual to that end!