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Thursday, October 15, 2009

From forest to fascist

The mission of the Portland water bureau sure is getting crowded, what with the cute stickers, contests, Caesar salad recipes, blogs and all. Now apparently it's going to have its own armed police force as well.

Do you think maybe somebody's starting to feel just a wee bit too important?

Leonard, phoning in from Palm Springs on Wednesday, where he was attending a public safety pension conference...
That, my friends, pretty much says it all.

Comments (19)

While I think more highly of Randy than the average commentator on this blog, I have to agree this is a truly bad idea. The creation of special police forces is almost always dangerous, and leads to a lot of waste and intramural rivalry. After all, water police would need a chief, maybe a detective division.
If we need armed police at reservoirs, do we also need them at bridges, on buses, at power stations?
Even if he hired retired professional law enforcement, you would have to wonder what sort of real cop would take on such a boring job. Put cameras on the reservoirs, hire the physically disabled to monitor them with extra screens at city hall and in some public spaces. Don't worry about response time. Put it on the police radio that someone is poisoning our water and I expect the police will show up, Cops drink water, too.

"The Public Safety Employees Pension & Benefits Conference (PSEP&BC) is dedicated to providing quality education that is specifically tailored for the unique needs and demands of public safety pensions. Since 1985, the Conference has educated hundreds of public safety pension trustees, administrators and staff; union officials; and local elected officials by featuring presentations from recognized leaders in both the worlds of finance and politics, providing news on the latest developments, and offering attendees the opportunity to network with fellow trustees.

The 2009 Public Safety Employees Pension & Benefits Conference will be held October 11-14 at Hotel Zoso in Palm Springs, California. Registration information will be available in summer 2009."

1) Can taxpayers afford the lawsuits that would surely attend such a force?

2) Is this a symptom of the "terror-industrial complex" against which Colin Powell warned?

3) Does anyone else in Portland, like Mr Leonard, look forward to three (3) public service pensions?

So when did Randy get made capo?

I don't know if this is comic or impotence on Randy's part needing an armed guard he can command. You know pretty soon they'l get diverted from patrolling reservoirs to being a color guard for the man himself. Then the only thing amusing would be Randy's design of their trappings since I am sure he'l inflict his poor taste on that also.

As far as a public safety pension conference, he designed PFDR and yet he is a beneficiary of it. 'Nuff said about his integrity.

Not completely unprecedented. Water Bureau employees worked along side PPB officers to guard Bull Run in the mid 70s following threats from militant groups (the S.L.A. in particular). This seemed to be a special circumstance however.

@ Pete.."Put cameras on the reservoirs, hire the physically disabled to monitor them with extra screens at city hall and in some public spaces".

Common sense. In fact, some cities have created great volunteer programs for this kind of thing. Often coordinated by local police, they enlist individuals who are willing to give up 2 or 3 hours a week to help be the eyes and ears for authorities. Non paid, and very effective.

I thought Randy didn't believe in the terrorism threat. And isn't he anti-guns? I am so confused!

I thought Randy didn't believe in the terrorism threat.

Based on what we heard when fighting the covering of the reservoirs, I'd say otherwise. And the Water Bureau PR flack Tim was his right-hand flack. Both went beyond the pale in mischaracterizing "terrorism" threats, painting opponents as crazy, misinformed, misguided, (insert your favorite Leonard insult here). The problem for Leonard was we were, in fact, better informed than he or the bureau flack were. At one point, Leonard began to fall back on the old "well, there are just things you don't understand" stance.

For Leonard, the Water Bureau's just another way to act out his political fantasies. I'm not surprised at all by this latest maneuver to arm and give police powers to some Water Bureau employees. It's consistent with Leonard's consistent attempts to be bombastic; mostly, he just bombs, and is as petulant as the next sixth grader when he doesn't get his way. He sets about looking for another way to get it.

"The water police, they're coming for me, every single flush..."

It will be a formidable wave of reservoir defense!

To make the job more interesting:

Hydro-Man uniforms
Shift rotation with the armed guards at OHSU

Result: A workforce flushed with victory!!

Occasionally I get what I call a "Republican hot flash", when suddenly, I feel very, very much in agreement with the enemy. It happens at least every three months, when I open my water bill and realize that yet again, I need to write a check. When I pay for every single other utility or service electronically and have been doing so for many years. About once a year, I'll call. "WHEN is it coming?" I think the office knows me now, as the person who whines to them once yearly about why they don't yet have electronic payment, and isn't the production of paper bad for water, and why do non-government-run utilities have it together?

But they seem to have it together enough to pay 100K a year per man-with-gun and his/her pension.


"To make the job more interesting:"

Blackwater for Portland Water!!!

Imagine a world where armed guards with police powers patrol the reservoirs:

Terrorist 1: We're going to poison the water supply of Portland!

Terrorist 2: ...where?

Terrorist 1: Portland Oregon! In America! On the west coast!

Terrorist 2: Er...is it an important city? I can't seem to fnd it on the map.

Terrorist 1: Doesn't matter! It has Americans, and so we hate them! Load up the anthrax, we're going west!

(a month later)

Terrorist 1: Let's get these dump trucks full of anthrax up to the Portland reservoirs! We will wreak holy havoc!

Terrorist 2: Yes! There they are, on the right...wait. Is that a guard? With a *gun*?

Terrorist 1: Oh no! It is! Sorry, guess our plan to attack the water supply of this city is foiled! Let us attack Eugene--I hear their guards only have radios.

Terrorist 2: Where's Eugene?


I also don't get it. Randy voted against Portland's cooperation with Homeland Security, but now he wants his own police force. And he's against guns.

But I'm sure he'll explain himself in a cognitive fashion with a news conference, along with his increased learning curve on how to juggle three public employee pensions.

They wouldn't let Randy run the real police bureau so he's gonna create his own. Nobody puts Baby in the corner.

Nobody puts Baby in the corner.

No need - he does it himself...


If they get bored on duty they can practice shooting fish in a barrel.

Hi, my name's Randy and I have an addiction to power and self aggrandizement. However, I cannot ever admit that I might be powerless.

Does Randy have an untreated head injury, or what? He's getting worse by the day.

Perhaps some more Portland Police could retire from the force, collect their police pension, then join Randy's new militia and earn what they made at the bureau in addition to their pension. That's how they do it at Portland Public Schools police force....

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