Archive for the ‘Local politics’ Category

When kids are encouraged to be adults, then yes, things get difficult

A cheerleading coach in Orangevale got axed after parents approached the school with semi-nude photos of her from a Playboy website.  Why? ‘Cause:

“Whenever we have people working with students, they should set a good example.”

Ann Buell, a mother of two student athletes, said the coach offered the wrong message at a time when more and more nude photos of teenagers are finding their way to Web sites.

“How are we going to tell them it’s wrong when they say, ‘Coach is doing it?’ “

How about by telling them that Coach is an adult and student athlete is not?  Yes, teens today are entirely too free with their sexual identities and spend too much time online ignoring the very important message that The Internets Never Forget.  Before they are 18, however, guess what, parents and schools, you can do your best to teach them about what’s appropriate, and at what age such things might be appropriate.

Nothing in the story indicates that the coach was posting these photos on her MySpace page or had them hanging in her office or displayed at cheerleading practice. So past that, I think the question becomes: parents, why are your kids on the Playboy website? And why don’t they understand that what is okay at 25 isn’t okay at 16?

Homeless Encampment Fears City, Oprah

The city is moving people from the so-called tent city.  The residents there, along with homeless advocates, aren’t exactly in love with Oprah. She drew attention to the encampment by airing footage on it and indicating an increase in campers due to the crap economy. Not quite, say homeless advocates: there’s been a homeless problem for quite awhile, a lot of residents have been there since before the economy tanked, and it’s geographic proximity to a food bank makes it attractive.

So, thanks Oprah?  Maybe? Not really.

Don’t Like The Game? Change The Rules!

Recognizing that his work in city government affords him a chance unavailable in the NBA, Mayor Kevin Johnson will soon circulate a petition for signatures asking Sacramentans to give him the power he needs to be effective in office. Something he apparently just can’t do right now.

I think this is totally lame. (more…)

Cost savings or asking for bad press later?

I’ll apologize in advance for not having a link for this article: Last night, the local news broadcast a story about a New York consulting group hired by Sacramento to look for ways to cut cost. I can’t confirm that it was awarded a no-bid contact, but I thought that’s what I heard. Not looking to start rumors. Anyway, what I DID see, however, was that this firm will be paid $190,000 only if it finds AT LEAST $390,000 in savings for the city. So the minimum the city is guaranteed is a savings of $190,000.

Anyone besides me see a way it can find a savings of $190,000 without needing the firm?  I say: lameness!

Does new hotel establish new ethic? Or rely on old jokes?

So, the Citizen Hotel will open soon and in case you haven’t heard about it yet it is THE coolest thing to happen in Sacramento, potentially ever. It’s so cool the room number signs are cool. So are the lampshades. Seriously, this hotel will outcool you, skinny-jean wearing Midtowner, and you, suit-wearing Capitol staffer, in like 3.2 seconds after it opens on November 30th. In fact, since its first weekend is already booked solid, it’s probably already out-cooled you.

From what I read and hear, little remains of the old building’s interiors – which is probably good since when I went to my optometrists office there, it was overrun by crickets (good luck) and other crawly things (bad luck).

But there’s something about The Citizen Hotel that bothers me, just a little. Something more insidious than its ubercool (hey, I like ubercool), something with a bit more bite . . . . (more…)

Local history

A historic day for a man who has seen a lot of history: Lelia LaRue shows her father, George Francis, a newspaper front page heralding the election of Barack Obama. At 112, Francis is believed to be the oldest man in America and the oldest to vote for Obama. (Sacramento, Calif.) ” (borrowed from the SF Chron’s day in pictures)

Of candidates and maps

Today’s Bee had a feature on geography-as-destiny in the mayoral race.  The city looks like a donut – if you map areas that lean Johnson against areas that lean Fargo. The city center – old, established neighborhoods, went for Fargo in the primary.  The outer frontiers – North Natomas, the Pocket – went for Johnson.  Polls indicate the trend still exists heading into Tuesday’s final showdown.

Crime concerns are central to the Northern and Southern Sacramento outposts.  It’s worth noting, though, that both reaches experience little violent crime.  It’s the property crimes that keep people awake. I suppose in the grand scheme of things, I’d opt for property crime over violent crime. Or, you know, no crime would be best.

As a resident of both new and old Sacramento – and as someone who’s lived in higher-crime areas in other cities, I know how I’ll be voting on Tuesday. . . . (more…)

Scandal at the Library!

According to this article from the Bee, there’s quite a tempest brewing about library director Anne Marie Gold. A sixth month grand jury investigation found

  • “Low morale and a high rate of turnover among employees, especially key management personnel.
  • “Lax oversight that led to felony charges being issued against two library officials accused in an overbilling scheme involving maintenance work at library branches.
  • “A ‘major problem with uncollected fines’ totaling $2.5 million. Since the report’s release in May, the library has concluded it gave incorrect information to the grand jury and that that actual total of unpaid fines and value of unreturned materials is $4.6 million”

In addition the grand jury recommended that Gold be fired. The library board is meeting today to determine how to respond. They’ve also already spent $300,000 on their own”performance  audit”.

As a devoted reader and regular patron of the library, I’m not at all happy about all of this. Not only at the apparent waste that’s been taking place, but also at the extra money that’s being proposed to investigate it further.

Regardless, I suggest you visit your local library soon.

(E) None of the Above

Actually, that’s not a wholly accurate title. What I would opt for after watching tonight’s 7-way Mayoral Debate on channel 10 would be (F) Neither of the two likely winners.

In what was nearly a model debate (attention George Stephanopoulos),  the seven candidates for Sacramento Mayor faced off over questions evenly divided between general issues of concern and their particular areas of strength – and, more interestingly, weaknesses.  Enough questions were directed at Kevin Johnson and Heather Fargo to clearly indicate who the serious candidates were and were not – though I give them credit for at least inviting all candidates.

What struck me most: the average candidates – the five whose names you likely don’t currently know and never will – offered more concrete ideas (not all winners) than either of the marquis candidates could muster.  Perhaps this is because they weren’t viable to begin with, thus, they enjoyed the freedom to say whatever they wanted and actually create a record.

Kevin Johnson managed to speak without saying anything for much of the time.  And he relied on his already disproven facts about local crime without getting called out for doing so.  I’m not sure what the professional analysis will say tomorrow, but I think he gave the weakest performance. (No, I’m not necessarily on Team Fargo yet, I’m just callin’ it like I see it.)

Fargo, for her part, certainly sounded like a policy wonk, using acronyms and political shorthand that’s likely unfamiliar to most voters (then again, maybe not to the people most likely to be watching a local mayoral debate).  She sounded like she knew what was going on – for better or worse.

But the rest of the field did a good job representing the rest of us: calling out Johnson and Fargo for their very real personal and professional failings and their rhetoric.  It was an awesome display of honesty and a breath of really fresh air in this already tired political season (nationally speaking).  There were some nutty moments, but I’m glad they were there.

Did you watch?

More than two, but who?

I complained earlier about a choice between Fargo and Johnson for mayor not really being a choice. Who else is there running for mayor? Enquiring minds started googling. Fifteen seconds later, thanks to modern technology, I found an answer.

There are eight candidates in all as of today for mayor. Only two have posted statements online. Which two? Well, Heather and Kevin.

My burning question for Richard Jones, Leonard Padilla, Muriel Strand, Shawn Eldredge, Adam Daniel, and Robert Drumgoole is: where are your statements? If you are running for mayor, can you please let us know why you think you can do the job?

I do confess, I recognize at least two of the names in the list (NOT Heather, and not Kevin). I can’t say that it’s a good thing—both have negative publicity—any PR mavens out there to help wannabe mayors in their campaigns?

Meanwhile, if you are brazen enough to waste the taxpayers’ money in filing for a mayoral run, finish the job and let us know who you are. If you are running just to exercise your rights as a citizen, let us know that too. Then I can exercise my right not to vote for you.

Terms of use | Privacy Policy | Content: Creative Commons | Site and Design © 2009 | Metroblogging ® and Metblogs ® are registered trademarks of Bode Media, Inc.