Anybody that has ever been around golf for very long knows of “taking a Mulligan.” For those unfamiliar with the term, it means “when a player gets a second chance to perform a certain move or action; usually due to lack of skill or bitter luck. A ‘Do-Over’.”
Witnessing the ongoing friction and antics of the newly seated County Council as they adjust to a five-member council, we see one of the most dysfunctional bodies of government I have ever seen in my life.
It’s easy to point fingers of blame at David Madore and let’s face it; he deserves his share of blame for his own antics, accusing others of criminal acts, corruption and plotting against citizens.
But he isn’t responsible for every last piece of dysfunction either.
All of the councilors share in what is going on as there is also the appearance of vengeance being a big motivator in the haste to undo what he pushed through prematurely with claims of revisiting those measures soon.
Chair Marc Boldt, when he isn’t shedding tears in a Rodney King type call of “can’t we all get along” is showing an inability to lead the council and maintain order very well. Open arguing and sniping between councilors during public meetings is not uncommon while he sits there like a deer caught in headlights.
Madore engages in long boring explanations of points he prefers while Jeanne Stewart and Julie Olson roll their eyes, lash back, challenge and vote against whatever it was they discussed while a divided audience sits and applauds their particular side.
Any given meeting we will see the same people appear before council, lashing out at the side they oppose and calling for that side to resign.
In short, nobody gets along; nobody works together for the needs of the people, personal squabbles taking precedence.
Of course an all too familiar attitude is the thought of just get rid of Madore and everything will be fine. But will it?
There is no guarantee Madore will lose his bid for reelection and even if he does, where will his replacement stand on the same issues?
Will that person just be another rubber stamp for downtown special interests? Or will they stand up for citizens?
Would they work any better with the other three and just go along to get along and draw more scorn from citizens that felt their needs were ignored prior to the 2012 election?
Would the other side lash back if any replacement did stand up for a more conservative view, giving us the representation we too deserve?
Both sides seem to forget that we all deserve our views represented; neither left or right always having it all their way and their way only, as many of us felt with prior county government.
What ever happened to that much vaunted “middle ground” elected officials used to be able to meet in and compromise after collaboration?
Let’s face it, not everything coming from Madore is bad and calls of a diverse citizenry must also include representation of that diverse citizenry, not just one side.
And that applies to all five councilors.
I don’t for a minute buy that staff are corrupt or criminal, but I also do not believe they carefully consider the needs and wants of citizens, depending more on towing the lines of bureaucratic red tape instead of seeking how better to accommodate citizens within those regulations.
I don’t believe they deserve the accusations hurled about that stresses them out and creates a hostile work environment either.
Bottom line is all can do better and must do better to govern, not rule citizens.
Whether elected or hired, they are there to serve us, not make us their subjects to do their bidding.
I have voted for three of the sitting councilors, only Madore and Boldt have not received my vote and I do not feel I am being represented by this current council of five. I’m sure I am not the only one that feels left out in the cold by the council.
It is time that all five put aside their personal animus towards each other, especially during council meetings and do the job they were elected to do.
No, that doesn’t mean adhering to any party line demanded by the few repeat hotheads blasting them every week. But to actually work together, collaborate, listen in reasonable discussions to each other and the people that bring legitimate issues before them and resolve those issues best they can.
While I am a strong advocate of free speech, I also have to say I am not averse to limiting the speaking privileges of those few that are not speaking to resolve issues, but speak to demean and denigrate sitting councilors, demanding resignations, wagging fingers and hurling blanket accusations every week.
But ultimately, it is the council, all five of them that must get their acts together, stop this bickering and work together for all of us, not select people or groups.
None of you were elected to tell us what we may or may not do, how much more we have to give up from our paychecks for projects they want or what mode of transportation you desire to limit us to.
None are there to cry they are victimized by the others when they don’t get their way.
Just get your acts together!
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