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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on January 3, 2012 9:42 AM. The previous post in this blog was Another year, another feud. The next post in this blog is Excellent birds. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.



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E-mail, Feeds, 'n' Stuff

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

What does it take?

Here's an interesting upcoming event being publicized on the City of Portland website: a meeting of local residents to discuss, supposedly in the abstract, the personal qualities that are needed of the next mayor and City Council members. It's being put on by a number of sponsoring groups, including a couple of leagues of neighborhood associations, and some organizations affiliated with racial and ethnic minority groups.

Their opening gambit:

Examples of the types of skills and abilities that might come up at the forum, include:
- Strong value for and skill at working in partnership with the community.
- Ability to grasp and understand important policy issues.
- Cultural competency and the ability to work with diverse communities.
- Ability to hire strong staff members with good policy development and community involvement skills.
- Willingness and ability to ask tough policy questions.
- Etc.

It sounds as though by the end of the night they'll be singing "Kumbaya" together, but it's not a bad topic for discussion in this election year: "the skills, abilities, and temperament needed to effectively serve the community as a mayor or city council member." Our list would include fiscal responsibility, personal integrity, ability to communicate clearly without an army of p.r. flacks, and respect for the rule of law.

Comments (19)

how about simply "Not Sam Adams"

I would say willingness to hire good competent managers for their bureaus (people with actual experience in that respective field), and then stay the heck out of the way.

Or even better, willingness to vote to turn our commission form of government into a normal city council.

You left out strong thumbs, excellent spelling skills, and the ability to craft coherent messages in 140 characters or less.

It'd be a much better event if you had to do a shot every time someone says "equity."

Strong value for and skill at working in partnership with the community.
- Ability to grasp and understand important policy issues.
- Cultural competency and the ability to work with diverse communities.
- Ability to hire strong staff members with good policy development and community involvement skills.
- Willingness and ability to ask tough policy questions.

Perfect. Anyone can claim to have those.
They are the qualities that every local politician and government administrator uses to make sure no one ever measures their true worth or holds them accountable for anything.

Everyone from Vera to Sten to Fred Hansen to Ben Canada to the Creep had those qualities. And so does everyone running for city council.

why is it official city business to pick its next leaders?

"ostensibly in the abstract" is right! it seems like they have people in mind, and made the list of qualifications to fit those people.

Intelligence. Integrity. Restraint.

The ability to know that we do not have endless resources and how to get the best results for the most Portlanders from the limited resources we do have.

The ability to say 'NO' to half-fast demands of developers and entrenched financial interests and staunch the hemorrhaging of city finances.

A commitment to maintaining what we already have, and forgoing new projects which interfere with maintenance. End deferred maintenance and whoring after expensive 'legacy' projects.

Just give some candidates that will promise to cut sewer/water rates, get rid of food composting and fix the potholes. Everything else will take care of itself. That will never happen in Portlandia though. I am so disgusted with the phony hacks that are running I probably won’t even vote. This pseudo green speak, diversity garbage and cultural competency baloney just doesn’t cut it.

"why is it official city business to pick its next leaders?"

Because that's what oligarchies do...


...Our list would include fiscal responsibility, personal integrity, ability to communicate clearly without an army of p.r. flacks, and respect for the rule of law.

Good List.

...why is it official city business to pick its next leaders?...

Good question.

Mr. Grumpy,
Within three minutes we both focused on:

"why is it official city business to pick its next leaders?"

Does the city anticipate a rebellion here against their agenda?
Best to get a movement going then
to direct/control the community for continuing support?

I might add,
perhaps those who blog here ought to attend
and push for critical issues to be put on the table for discussion,
even if not "on the agenda of topics for discussion"......

I doubt if any ordinary citizen would be allowed to enter the room, let alone voice a coherent opinion.
And should a bunch of us actually have the audacity to show up and demand to be allowed to speak, the meeting would be postponed because there would not be enough seating or some other lame excuse.
I have see that happen!

"the personal qualities that are needed of the next mayor and City Council members." Abilities needed:

- Dealing with actual problems (potholes, bad schools, gang shootings) and not made up ones (number of different garbage paisl and color of bike path markings)

- Talking for five minutes without pegging the BS meter.

- Not playing SIM city with taxpayers money

- Creating a sustainable environment by intelligent spending and reasonable fees (can you hear us PWB?).

- Being sustainable by managing energy usage wisely and locking all thermostats in city offices at 60 (heat) and 80 (cool) degrees.

- Communicating with the people who fund your ideas by talking with them intelligently instead of engaging in finding even more obscure terminology to describe how you are wasting time.

- Using video conferencing instead of hopping on planes every other week to go offshore to some no-name conference.

Oh well, perchance to dream.

My list of required skills:
* Ability to read beyond the Sierra Klub Weekly Reader
* Ability to do grade school arithmetic.
* Ability to do high school logic.
* Passed Econ 101
* Working BS detector

That should clean up government and get rid of 99% of those currently in power.


I can guarantee you that they aren't going to cut water/sewer rates, John - though it sure would be nice if they spent our money on the infrastructure rather than pet projects.

It appears to be a national problem:

Because this event is (A) apparently being organized by the City of Portland's Office of Neighborhood Involvement and (B) is certainly being promoted by the City of Portland's website, does this imply the City's endorsement of the views and opinions expressed by the groups in attendance? And can/should a government entity utilize its resources to advance or promote the agenda of any one particular group? This isn't to say that the groups' agendas aren't valid or worthwhile, but is it the city's job to provide time/space/bandwidth to promote these groups? I sure don't think so.

Since Amanda Fritz is the Commissioner in charge of the Office of Neighborhood Involvement-the major sponsor, and she is running for Council, wouldn't this be at least a ting of conflict of interest? Government/tax dollars shouldn't be in the business of formulating "guidelines" of candidate standards.

Totally Orwellian, Amanda. But, what is just as bad is your opponent probably supports this misuse of taxpayer dollars and sponsorship.

"- Strong value for and skill at working in partnership with the community."

Does this imply some doubt the current leadership has these qualities ?

"- Ability to grasp and understand important policy issues."

This would be a refreshing change.

"- Cultural competency and the ability to work with diverse communities."

Cultural competency ?

"- Ability to hire strong staff members with good policy development and community involvement skills."

Why are staff doing the policy development?

"- Willingness and ability to ask tough policy questions."

That would require holding people accountable.


As a lawyer/blogger, I get
to be a member of:

In Vino Veritas

Lange, Pinot Gris 2015
Kiona, Lemberger 2014
Willamette Valley, Pinot Gris 2015
Aix, Rosé de Provence 2016
Marchigüe, Cabernet 2013
Inazío Irruzola, Getariako Txakolina Rosé 2015
Maso Canali, Pinot Grigio 2015
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Kirkland, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2016
Cantele, Salice Salentino Reserva 2013
Whispering Angel, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2013
Avissi, Prosecco
Cleto Charli, Lambrusco di Sorbara Secco, Vecchia Modena
Pique Poul, Rosé 2016
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Rosé 2016
Stoller, Pinot Noir Rosé 2016
Chehalem, Inox Chardonnay 2015
The Four Graces, Pinot Gris 2015
Gascón, Colosal Red 2013
Cardwell Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
L'Ecole No. 41, Merlot 2013
Della Terra, Anonymus
Willamette Valley, Dijon Clone Chardonnay 2013
Wraith, Cabernet, Eidolon Estate 2012
Januik, Red 2015
Tomassi, Valpolicella, Rafaél, 2014
Sharecropper's Pinot Noir 2013
Helix, Pomatia Red Blend 2013
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2013
Locations, Spanish Red Wine
Locations, Argentinian Red Wine
La Antigua Clásico, Rioja 2011
Shatter, Grenache, Maury 2012
Argyle, Vintage Brut 2011
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16 Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2014
Benton Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
Primarius, Pinot Gris 2015
Januik, Merlot 2013
Napa Cellars, Cabernet 2013
J. Bookwalter, Protagonist 2012
LAN, Rioja Edicion Limitada 2011
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Rutherford 2009
Denada Cellars, Cabernet, Maipo Valley 2014
Marchigüe, Cabernet, Colchagua Valley 2013
Oberon, Cabernet 2014
Hedges, Red Mountain 2012
Balboa, Rose of Grenache 2015
Ontañón, Rioja Reserva 2015
Three Horse Ranch, Pinot Gris 2014
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
Nelms Road, Merlot 2013
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Pinot Gris 2014
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2012
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2013
Villa Maria, Sauvignon Blanc 2015
G3, Cabernet 2013
Chateau Smith, Cabernet, Washington State 2014
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16
Willamette Valley, Rose of Pinot Noir, Whole Clusters 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Ca' del Baio Barbaresco Valgrande 2012
Goodfellow, Reserve Pinot Gris, Clover 2014
Lugana, San Benedetto 2014
Wente, Cabernet, Charles Wetmore 2011
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
King Estate, Pinot Gris 2015
Adelsheim, Pinot Gris 2015
Trader Joe's, Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley 2015
La Vite Lucente, Toscana Red 2013
St. Francis, Cabernet, Sonoma 2013
Kendall-Jackson, Pinot Noir, California 2013
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2013
Erath, Pinot Noir, Estate Selection 2012
Abbot's Table, Columbia Valley 2014
Intrinsic, Cabernet 2014
Oyster Bay, Pinot Noir 2010
Occhipinti, SP68 Bianco 2014
Layer Cake, Shiraz 2013
Desert Wind, Ruah 2011
WillaKenzie, Pinot Gris 2014
Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2013
Des Amis, Rose 2014
Dunham, Trautina 2012
RoxyAnn, Claret 2012
Del Ri, Claret 2012
Stoppa, Emilia, Red 2004
Primarius, Pinot Noir 2013
Domaines Bunan, Bandol Rose 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Deer Creek, Pinot Gris 2015
Beaulieu, Rutherford Cabernet 2013
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
King Estate, Pinot Gris, Backbone 2014
Oberon, Napa Cabernet 2013
Apaltagua, Envero Carmenere Gran Reserva 2013
Chateau des Arnauds, Cuvee des Capucins 2012
Nine Hats, Red 2013
Benziger, Cabernet, Sonoma 2012
Roxy Ann, Claret 2012
Januik, Merlot 2012
Conundrum, White 2013
St. Francis, Sonoma Cabernet 2012

The Occasional Book

Phil Stanford - Rose City Vice
Kenneth R. Feinberg - What is Life Worth?
Kent Haruf - Our Souls at Night
Peter Carey - True History of the Kelly Gang
Suzanne Collins - The Hunger Games
Amy Stewart - Girl Waits With Gun
Philip Roth - The Plot Against America
Norm Macdonald - Based on a True Story
Christopher Buckley - Boomsday
Ryan Holiday - The Obstacle is the Way
Ruth Sepetys - Between Shades of Gray
Richard Adams - Watership Down
Claire Vaye Watkins - Gold Fame Citrus
Markus Zusak - I am the Messenger
Anthony Doerr - All the Light We Cannot See
James Joyce - Dubliners
Cheryl Strayed - Torch
William Golding - Lord of the Flies
Saul Bellow - Mister Sammler's Planet
Phil Stanford - White House Call Girl
John Kaplan & Jon R. Waltz - The Trial of Jack Ruby
Kent Haruf - Eventide
David Halberstam - Summer of '49
Norman Mailer - The Naked and the Dead
Maria Dermoȗt - The Ten Thousand Things
William Faulkner - As I Lay Dying
Markus Zusak - The Book Thief
Christopher Buckley - Thank You for Smoking
William Shakespeare - Othello
Joseph Conrad - Heart of Darkness
Bill Bryson - A Short History of Nearly Everything
Cheryl Strayed - Tiny Beautiful Things
Sara Varon - Bake Sale
Stephen King - 11/22/63
Paul Goldstein - Errors and Omissions
Mark Twain - A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
Steve Martin - Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life
Beverly Cleary - A Girl from Yamhill, a Memoir
Kent Haruf - Plainsong
Hope Larson - A Wrinkle in Time, the Graphic Novel
Rudyard Kipling - Kim
Peter Ames Carlin - Bruce
Fran Cannon Slayton - When the Whistle Blows
Neil Young - Waging Heavy Peace
Mark Bego - Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul (2012 ed.)
Jenny Lawson - Let's Pretend This Never Happened
J.D. Salinger - Franny and Zooey
Charles Dickens - A Christmas Carol
Timothy Egan - The Big Burn
Deborah Eisenberg - Transactions in a Foreign Currency
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. - Slaughterhouse Five
Kathryn Lance - Pandora's Genes
Cheryl Strayed - Wild
Fyodor Dostoyevsky - The Brothers Karamazov
Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
Jack Walker - The Extraordinary Rendition of Vincent Dellamaria
Colum McCann - Let the Great World Spin
Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus - The Nanny Diaries
Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
F. Sionil Jose - Dusk
Natalie Babbitt - Tuck Everlasting
Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
Mark Herrmann - The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law
Barry Glassner - The Gospel of Food
Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
James McManus - Positively Fifth Street
Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

Miles run year to date: 113
At this date last year: 155
Total run in 2016: 155
In 2015: 271
In 2014: 401
In 2013: 257
In 2012: 129
In 2011: 113
In 2010: 125
In 2009: 67
In 2008: 28
In 2007: 113
In 2006: 100
In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
In 2003: 269

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