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Ruehlig Wrong, No Charade as Tiscareno Was Best Applicant

TiscarenoRuehlig

Walter Ruehlig put out a pathetic piece today in the Antioch Herald slamming the Antioch City Council for their choice of Tony Tiscareno to fill the vacant council seat left by Wade Harper as he won the Mayor’s seat

I like Mr. Ruehlig, but this was an odd piece even for him as he appears to have fallen off his rocker.

When the appointment process began weeks ago, in a Dec. 13 Letter to the Editor, Mr. Ruehlig stated he would not apply and urged support for James Davis as he was the third highest vote getter in the last election or someone from the business community—in this case Sean Wright.  For the record, just because Mr. Davis was the third highest vote getter doesn’t make him entitled to an appointment.

This whole notion by groups such as Take Back Antioch and residents that state the “people spoke” by making Davis the third highest vote getter so he should get in is just silly. I am not sure what people are so upset about or do not understand because the “people” voted Davis out of office.

While I understand Ruehligs moral dilemma, this is politics man!

Given this attitude of apparent sour grapes over an application process, its probably a good thing he was not elected or appointed Instead of bowing out or letting the process play out, Ruehlig should have fought until the very end instead of giving up which is exactly what he did. Now he blames the process.

Now that the process has played out and Tony Tiscareno was selected, Ruehlig used the words “charade” and “political payback” in today’s Letter to the Editor when he should know exactly how this process works which is that the people voted in a city council to make this choice on the voters behalf. Unless “the people” want to fork over money for a special election, the application process was the best scenario.

The truth is, the Antioch City Council has been a “do very little” council for the last few years under James Davis—partly because of the position Donald Freitas put Antioch in which reverts back to the economy crash.  People want to make a claim that it should have been Davis or Freitas because of “vote totals” or “experience”, but look at where that experience has taken your city? To the crapper!

Why anyone want to continue that trend is beyond me? The best thing for the council was to get new blood in there which just occurred.

Having got to know Mr. Tiscareno for the past year and a half, I can say the man is very principled, loves his community, cares about the hard working people, puts his money where his mouth is, and wants to see local youth be given a chance to shine. He is a fighter and knows how politics work.

Aside from public safety which is the top issue at the moment, this man cares about job creation and will fight for jobs both union and non-union. He wants to bring business to Antioch through incentives while investing strategically in Antioch–specifically Rivertown and Summersville Business District.

Aside from Gary Agopian and Mary Rocha attending many community events, this council has been disengaged from its residents for quite some time. Add Tiscareno  and Wilson to the mix, the council now becomes very public which is a great thing for Antioch.

And just to throw out a hypothetical which is meant at no disrespect to Monica Wilson, but had Tiscareno ran for city council this year (he likely would have ran in 2 years anyway), he would have beat out Monica Wilson for the two spot. I say this because Tiscareno knows how to campaign because he has done it for so long with the Labor Unions and other political candidates.

Someone asked earlier this week just who is Tony Tiscareno. I can think of no better response given than by Yvette Tiscareno on the Contra Costa Times website.

Who is this guy? Let me tell you. This is the guy who while most of you were sleeping off your Thanksgiving Food Coma’s or standing in line at Target to save a few bucks on a barbie, he was standing united with Walmart’s workers who were fired for refusing to be forced to work under unfair conditions. This is the guy who loves his city and always stands up for the rights of hard working families and is concerned with the safety and well being of our youth. This guy is a HARD WORKER, a family man who believes in core values and is a DO-ER, not a SAY-ER. This man has the highest morals and values and is the most honest man I know. This guy has worked HARD behind the scenes, thanklessly for many many years. The City of Antioch is lucky to have him sit on their council.

I am going to address a couple of paragraphs by Mr. Ruehlig as his text is in bold followed by my comments.

In truth, I had my doubts about the wisdom of the appointment process. It’s not because the ideal is flawed; it is, in concept, a noble idea, like communism, that on paper works. Practice, though, is another kettle of fish. You see, if you don’t use an objective measure like next highest vote getter you leave yourself open to subjectivity. Likely to enter left stage, politics as usual, i.e., the buddy system, payback, and the temptation to stack the deck.

There is nothing in writing that states the Antioch City Council had to pick the third highest vote getter. Antioch actually bypassed the third highest vote getter in 2008 when they bypassed Arne Simonsen in favor of Martha Parsons.

Again, in the abstract, picking someone who is the most experienced in governance, most involved in the community and most complimentary to the existing skill set of the Council is noble and conceptually doable. It’s just a darned hard assignment for most folks, human nature given what it is.

Tiscareno has been a “behind the scenes guy” for many years and has experience so Mr. Ruehlig is very wrong. In fact, Tiscareno likely has more experience than any other candidate who applied—yes I just said that.  I say it because he has been involved with politcs from local, state, and federal issues. He has helped make things happen and helped create jobs.  He also has better contacts than any other candidate including  Davis and Freitas.

Case in point; by a 3-1 vote this Council took the subjective, lower and less enlightened road, choosing someone notable principally as a past union leader and political operative who worked aside them on many campaigns. Bless her family style, but Mr. Tiscareno also happened, from all accounts, to have grown up as a virtual third son to Mary Rocha.

See paragraph above, this is exactly why he has the experience and was chosen because he has busted his but for the unions and political issues for years—Ruehlig even admits it. While most candidates would have continued to kick the tires around without moving, Tiscareno can hit the ground running.

Those are not “bad” things, but in doing so, though, the Council bypassed people overflowing with civic and governance accomplishment. The rejected resumes sported the likes of a Citizen of the Year, Stanford graduate with a Master’s degree, past Mayors, Chief of Staff and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce.

Depending on what one is looking for, these are all nice merits for an applicant to have, however, we are talking about leading a city instead and not a  business.  Many people with similar credentials have been elected to higher office and failed—this is a poor argument by Ruehlig and he should know that. I’ll take Tiscareno who has actually been in the field and delivered results as a political adviser and president of United Steelworkers Local 1440 over a Chamber Leader for example.

In closing, using any sort of logic, had the council picked a “friend” or someone for “political payback” as Ruehlig claims, that would be political suicide if it doesn’t work out and these folks wouldn’t last another election.

While Ruehlig is entitled to is opinion,  it doesn’t change the facts that the best applicant was chosen through a process that was the same to all applicants.  Tiscareno has the merits and instead of complaining, Ruehlig should acknowledge that and issue a public apology.

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31 Responses »

  1. This is exactly why we in Antioch did not vote Walter in with his holier-than-thou attitude. Sometimes the man needs to be politely put back in his place.

    • Jan,

      Who is claiming holiness? I don’t compare myself to others and don’t claim to have any eternal truths or answers. just a lot of questions. If I stand accused of occasionally being a gadfly and gently poking and prodding dialogue and reflection, I confess. I’m first in line to need SELF-reflection.

      Get to know me and you’ll actually see i’m quite centrist and can see and argue both sides of most issues. I’m really not terribly opinionated precisely because I see the ambiguity in the world and the human flaws (of which I have an abundance).

      If my column stirred some responses, hey, mission accomplished. I like to communicate and think that’s my mission. Heck, I can’t play an instrument or fix a car.

      Well over 70% of the people of Antioch recently voted against APPOINTING the Mayor or Treasurer. maybe that says something about their trust on objectivity. Obviously, 30% disagree but I don;t think I am off my rocker, as Mike says, with my opinion, which is all it is, honest opinion.

  2. Burke, you are an idiot. Walter is 100% correct that this was a reward. Agopian will be the lone vote on a lot of issues. When Antioch goes down the “crapper” as you refer to it, hopefully then the voters correct the error of Harper, Rocha, Wilson and Tiscareno. Davis should have been appointed while Frietas should have been the alternate. Open your eyes.

  3. Antioch politics is so screwed up. We have the extreme right who are angry at anything and we have an extreme left that doesn’t want to do anything. I’ll take a guy who has not screwed up anything yet and never served on the council. It appears Take Back Antioch has worn out their welcome with me as they want to defend Davis when he has done very little to improve the city.

    • You are right about Take Back Antioch. Someone needs to give them a reality check. Do they not realize they supported a Mayor who helped layoff officers and replacing them with a guy who can help re-hire them? They are not seeing the big picture.

      • Interesting. I haven’t noticed the TBA page officially taking ANY side in this argument. I *personally* have made my feelings known on the TBA page and on the Contra Costa Times article, and yes, I am a founding member of TBA. That doesn’t mean that everyone in TBA shares my feelings, nor does it mean that I speak for TBA officially. I *personally* believe that if Tony Tiscareno wanted to be on the City Council, he should have run for office. Then the voters would’ve had a say. For the sitting council to unilaterally appoint someone to the position who did not even run, without the input of the voters, is undemocratic and certainly appears to be political payback. I am *personally* disgusted with this outcome, and will fight to have the municipal code changed for the future. I didn’t vote for Davis, but an awful lot of people did (nearly as many as voted for Monica Wilson), and I think that ignoring the will of the voters in this respect is an ominous indication of the way this city council is going to do business for the next two years. I am not against Tony Tiscareno being on the city council…I just want him to earn the seat by running for office, not by getting handed the position by his pals on the council.

      • @Jen… I suggest you look a bit harder–specifically the Dec. 14 post which states “third highest vote getter should have been appointed. They picked Davis. Maybe it was just Brittany which is fine, then do so on her own account and not the group page.

        Here is what was posted.

        “I don’t usually jump into these sorts of issues, but I firmly believe this issue is a matter of PRINCIPLE and not of Politics. Why is our Mayor and City Council holding a special city council meeting Tuesday… why are they waisting time and money to ‘appoint’ one of the new 9 applicants for the vacant City Council seat, when on December 4th they could have SIMPLY appointed the 3rd highest vote getter from the Nov 6th election? If they had done this, we would be already be working on bigger and more pressing issues (like crime and violence!) but instead we are playing politics. This is just wrong.

        SPEAK OUT! Be at the City Council meeting at 6 PM on Tuesday, December 18th.”

      • Jen is blinded from the take back antioch light. Any one not even paying attention knows the group wanted Davis because they said so. They even wrote it writing to pick the third highest vote getter. Not sure what is so complicated by the comments of playing favorites with one candidate.

        And Jen, Tony did earn his seat through an application process which is more than what we can say for Walter who didn’t even apply but raising a stink.

      • Hey Folks – Brittney here, Founder of Take Back Antioch.

        This is the first time I’ve read any of the content on this blog, but I wanted to drop by and thank everyone for their discussions here and help answer some questions. (Thank you Jen for also commenting as a co-founder of TBA.)

        Most pressing – I’m posting to make sure that we get the clear picture. Nothing I posted on the Facebook page was out of line for any 501c3 organization. Some people may not have agreed with me, and that is perfectly fine, but the point of the post was simply to point out that the appointment PROCESS we use in the case of a vacant council seat in Antioch is broken. The post obviously succeeded in starting a discussion, because here we are.

        Making this statement and calling for action on an issue (I invited those on both sides of the issue to speak up) that needs attention is absolutely not calling for or supporting any particular candidate. I’m truly sorry for anyone sees it that way, because it’s simply not true. I would feel this way if ‘Joe Antioch’ was running and came in 3rd, only 1% behind in the election and he was not appointed, and the council chose to go through an application process instead.

        It truly is this simple. No politics. No motives. No ‘reality check’ needed.

        I hope those that know me personally and know my heart… and those who have followed TBA from the beginning (Dec, 2010) know our motives and what we stand for. We want Antioch to be free of blight, crime and inaction. We want the citizens of Antioch to be involved and feel empowered and join in and be a part of the solution, and not be a part of the problem.

        I invite you to put aside our differences as a community and join our efforts in ‘taking back’ Antioch!

  4. Thank you Mr. Burkholder for bringing some common sense to this selection. I am sick of reading how this thing was fixed because if it was, Manuel would have been chosen. People really do need to think before they mouth off. Do you really think this council will do you any favors if you continue to attack them and their choice? Consider Walters political career over.

    • Dave, I’m not asking for any favors. Do you think it was easy speaking out? The easy thing would be to go along. I tried my best to be civil and I left the door open to eat my hat if proven wrong on the future. If being earnest and prodding others is a fault, I confess. As to pretensions of ‘holier than thou’, somebody doesn’t know me. Heck, I put myself at the top on any lists of self-improvement

      In fact, most of these people I consider friends. I voted to hire Mary’s son as AHS Principal. I worked with Wade as a fellow Trustee. I publicly congratulated Monica on her victory.

      I am not condemning people but merely speaking out on a flawed process that could use improvement. It gave nine enormously talented individuals (Tony included) less than an hour and, in the end, allowed no discussion before a vote..

      I, for one, love it when people graciously express their heartfelt conviction, even if I disagree, Pray tell, we need more, not less, spirited dialogue.

    • Frank S “Walter did not even apply”.. He spent a mighty small fortune to run for the office and IMHO is not raising a stink. He, along with thousands of voters, want the process changed. We have watched a council make up rules by the minute as they go along twice now. We need specific written rules for this and if it takes an initiative then it must be done.

  5. I give Walter credit where its due for speaking his mind, but this article is spot on. I don’t want Davis or Freitas back in charge and neither should anyone else. A lot of people are bent out of shape for no reason as the council did what they are supposed to do which is make an appointment, not hold an election on popularity.

    • Waldo,

      I appreciate your slap on the back for speaking out. I applaud you, as well, for being vocal. It is so easy to sit back disengaged like most of the world does

      Yes, we have an honest difference of opinion, People of good will do. Odd, though, in some ways we maybe agree more than disagree. I concur with you that it is sad when merit and records gets lost and people vote on popularity (or any other superficial denominator,, be it parry alone,sex, race, position on ballot (would you believe studies show position a 3 to 5% factor?).

      Where we may split, though, is that I think the appointment process also boils down to POPULARITY—– except this time it is being done by four people not 40,000 Antioch voters. The lesser of two evils, to my perspective, is letting the 40,000 decide.

      Fact is, Ii less than an hour you simply can’t rigorously interview nine people, let alone discuss their merits. In fact, when Mr. Agopian asked for discussion he was ignored and a hasty vote taken. There has got to be a better way.

      Someone alluded to this being called fixed. I would never say or think that. I do believe, though, that this group knows each other well enough that they were pretty darned sure it would come down to Mr. Manuel or Mr. Tiscareno.

      Don’t shoot the messenger but Freitas made a good show that it was really a ‘contest’ with people deliberating to the last minute. Now Mike and i will argue about the best candidate or about politics being politics and won’t probably agree on the ideal. Where, i think, there is no reasonable argument is the lack of true openness and final deliberation of Council folks coming into this evening.

      Even the fact that Tony brought politicians, his wife, kids, grand kids, mother and other extended family just seemed interesting.

  6. Mr. Burkholder, I don’t know how you can sleep at night when you write crap like this. Rather than being objective, you are simply turning your back and highlighting just how crooked this is. No wonder why so few in Oakley take you seriously. The people of Antioch should be very worried about what this council will try to accomplish over the next two years with a lot of 4-1 votes headed their way.

    • The people of Antioch are very worried since Mr. Tiscarino was her son’s best friend growing up and she considered him her 3rd son. She should have recused herself from voting and put the information out instead of hiding it.

    • Michelle, you make the most sense out of all this. It is not that we don’t like Mr. Tiscarino, we just don’t know anything about him. For Mr. Burkholder to say that Mr. Tiscarino would beat out anyone because of his campaigning skill if he ran for the position, that is his opinion not a fact. He obviously has no idea of what “Take Back Antioch” stands for yet he again expresses his opinion as if he figured it all out. But he would not respect others opinion such as Mr. Ruehlig. I think the the personal ties Mr. Tiscarnino has with some of the council members and they were not excluded from the voting is what people are not happy about. Hopefully, Mr. Tiscarino does a good job and prove us wrong. Best wishes to the City of Antioch.

  7. I’m pretty disgusted with this and how the process was handled to be honest. We have one group who wanted the third highest vote getter and another group that are okay with the selection. No one will win unless a clear process is drawn out ahead of time instead of made up as you go like what occured on Tuesday.

    • Well put, Jen. I happen to personally like the next highest vote getter idea but that is one opinion. To me, it has some degree of objectivity. In fact, in June, by well over 70% the people of Antioch voted in a referendum that they wanted elected, NOT appointed, Mayors and Treasurers. That said something about their trust in so-called ‘objective’ appointments.

      I am NOT, though, an absolutist. If this process doesn’t carry the day, then at least, as you well argue, thrash out a consensus policy for the FUTURE. Mike keeps arguing Tony is he best choice. Let’s. for argument, say he is. I still disagree wit the cockeyed PROCESS.

      Why then were nine people interviewed in less than an hour and a vote taken with no discussion on he finalists? Where is the rigor there? I’d spend more time hiring a grocery bagger.

      For the record, Tony had his wife, kids, grand kids. mother and extended family there as well as political friends. Is he a bad person for that? No, this is NOT personal. It’s about the process you underscore.

      I can’t, though, believe people can honestly say the Council at large came in with an open mind that night probing and reflecting.

      • Okay Walter, I’ll play with you. You are obviously upset with the process which is fine, but the process was the same for all the candidates no matter how you slice it. Would you prefer spending a chunk of change on an election? I know you wouldn’t.

        Here is a quick overview:

        1. Applicants apply and highlight their experience
        2. Each candidate was given 3-minutes to present their case.
        3. Each Council person nominated 2 (those advanced)
        4. If those remaining had 3-of-4 votes, they move on in the process
        5. Final 2 – a selection was made.

        Please give me an alternative process that you would approve of where you would narrow down 9 or more applicants.

        Using your logic, you are essentially advocating for an applicant that the public voted out of office–essentially the first loser. If Davis warranted another term, the public would have voted him back in over Wilson or Rocha—same goes for Freitas over Harper. Neither happened. Going a step further, your preference of the next best finisher in a recent election shuts the door on anyone else in Antioch who might have wanted to apply regardless of how good/bad Davis prior experience was. So now you have alienated another group.

        The truth is, Manuel probably was the guy until the public voiced its concerns and suggested Davis simply because it wasn’t Manuel. The council knows who is involved and who isn’t within the city and trying to improve it. They know who they have worked with and who is a nobody. They know the qualifications even before reading the application. You are acting as if no due diligence was given but fail to offer any sort of alternative other than picking someone who the voters took out of office.

        Rather than complain, please provide an alternative approach to picking an appointee which could then be presented to the council for future reference or even policy.

  8. Mike, the first line of your last paragraph is incorrect. The Antioch Herald has taken no position nor have I published my opinion on the appointment. We merely published the opinion of Walter Ruehlig. Once again, you make an accusation against my publication and website for merely either reporting or publishing someone else’s opinion. Please change that last paragraph to reflect the correct information. Thank you. Allen Payton, Publisher

  9. Mike Same with your point on Take Back Antioch (TBA). TBA is non profit and therefore did not support anyone. Did individuals who post on the TBA facebook site talk about their positon yes, but not TBA. I believe that TBA will support the council and encourage them to do the right things to make Antioch a better place to live again. Let us work togather to make Antioch a city to be proud to live in and a place where buisnesses can locate in.

    • No, I am not going to remove it, the comments came from the Take Back Antioch “group” on Facebook while at the Dec. 11 City Council Meeting, Britany Gougeon aka “leader” made comments about how Antioch rejected the appointment of a clerk and treasure…. meanwhile, she asked the council to reverse its decision to go towards an appointed process while calling it an error and a matter of principal and not a matter of politics. She essentially said an appointment would create mistrust as if the council could not make a decent selection. Take Back Antioch did not support the process which many in the “group” also did not like it and posted comments about it. While Take Back Antioch as an entity did not support anyone, many of its members and “leaders” did. This is one issue which Take Back Antioch should have stayed out of as a non-profit as now they have to work with a council they basically said cannot be trusted—nice!
      Having said that, Take Back Antioch has a great track record and should continue to be supported by all of Antioch and the surrounding communities. They do fabulous things for the city and raise awareness on many issues such as blight and crime…. My positive opinion of them has not changed over a difference of opinion on a single issue just as I can appreciate Walters difference of opinion.

  10. I typically and purposefully don’t comment, repost, like, tweet, or share any of the political/personal/character attack posts, but for ONCE, I actually enjoyed reading this one, because in it contained thoughtful repartee! I love it when SOLUTIONS (not accusations) come through and factual information is given.

    Opinions – when stated as such – are also welcoming, however opinions stated as fact is where I draw the line and move on to the next e-mail notification!

    I applaud all the above participants in this thread-of-consciouness.

    I believe the power of the (electronic) pen should be used to educate, inform, inspire, motivate and ultimately MOVE people to use their critical thinking skills and ultimately HELP people; to become a better person, community, society, world.

    But that’s just my own opinion!

    If we are not doing this with our power to communicate, then we have to ask ourselves what is our purpose?

    My mom (who passed away 5 years ago at the young age of 63) always told me, my brothers and sisters as we were growing up … “Sh** or get off the pot!” She hated complainers.

    Instead of complaining, find creative ways to improve the situation. There are always choices and options. And there are always new, fresh, innovative, useful, and successful solutions out there!

    “Rome wasn’t built in a day” … so if it takes another so-many years to rebuild a successful city such as Antioch (or Oakley, Brentwood, Pittsburg, ROME!), then so be it. Let’s ALL work together to make this a successful town, community, society, world.

    Instead of pointing fingers and laying blame, let’s ALL come up with new ideas. Research other successful cities and ask yourself (and them) how’d they do that? What model did they use? What processes did they incorporate? What worked for them? How can we do the same and get the same results? What can “I” do to HELP?

    Just my two and a half cents.

    Peace & Merry Christmas to all of you.

    Smilz,
    Charleen
    TheMiddleChild

  11. Take Bake Antioch should have stayed out of it but Mr. Burkholder and Mr. Ruehlig should both chill out. Yes, both can voice an opinion, but it doesn’t make either right. Both are actually right with a similar end result. The best candidate was chosen in my opinion even if the process sucked. The process didn’t matter because the same candidate would likely have been chosen anyway. Is Mr. Ruehlig advocated for a longer and mroe drawn out political show?

    Burkholder has proven yet again his tact sucks, but he is spot on. I’d love to see Mr. Ruehlig provide an alternative plan.

  12. Steve and Mike,

    I appreciate that we are off the Ruehlig’s piece is “pathetic” and he is “off his rocker”. Charleen had it right; let’s talk about best practice models and improving process.

    I still believe that the next highest vote getter is the fairest and cleanest approach. In a June referendum, if i recall, well over 70% of Antioch voters said they wanted ELECTED Mayors and Treasurers. Is it a stretch to say they had doubts about appointment?

    I concur even though I am not an advocate and do not carry water for Jim Davis. I would have said the same if Wilson, Pinto or me were third.

    I am not an absolutist, though. I see the merits of appointment, though this is the second straight time there has been legions angry and disillusioned and, right or wrong, claiming foul. Yes, there has to be a better way.

    If appointment, though, rules the day I don’t have all the answers but will reflect, question and probe, as we all should. The process, ON PAPER, looks good. I think, though, that for starters there needs to more discussion. Each Council Member should weigh in on merits and demerits so that deliberation is seen by the people. and reasoning for choice is voiced.

    There should not be a rush to vote. What would it have cost to let Agopian (or others) speak and bat thoughts around?

    Perception is after all the better part of reality. We don’t want a sense of slam dunk and any appearence that minds were somehow made up before the evening. It should be an open -minded process of people wanting to be ‘convinced’ and wrestling with the pros and cons of nine talented people.

    In fact, one person, whom I greatly respect for their objectivity and sobriety, said that they didn’t come to the meeting because they couldn’t keep a “straight face”. That’s not me talking, but I am sure thousands feel that way. Again, rightly or wrongly…..I, for one, do not believe for one moment that there was a “fix”, but in this cynical age we need to do everything we can for transparency.

    Heck, even the less than one hour seemed short for the task at hand. It’s a huge decision and sets a tone for the Council

    Just some preliminary observations…..Definitely this should be a work of art in progress to improve process. as it WILL happen again over time. Of course, you’ll never please everyone but some of the distemper and puzzlement can be alleviated if we all work civilly on this. Nobody has a monopoly on good ideas.

    • I never said you were pathetic, I said your editorial in the Antioch Herald was pathetic. I actually enjoy your writings and opinions for the most part. No one is going to agree 100% of the time and this is one of those cases. Just for arguments sake, removing the Nov. election from consideration, who was the “best candidate” in your eyes.

      • Agreed; we had nine strong arguments.

        You asked who I thought was the best candidate? At the risk of sounding like a politician (or former one; though School Board is generally the least political of any office, save dog catcher) that is tough for me to say. Why? Precisely because I still have an open mind and would want to see their applications and actively interview them holding my final yea or nay till all the thrashing out and comparision was done. Interesting things can develop when we let things summer

        I have no single yardstick but I must confess that I hoped that someone from the business community would have what it takes it impress. Wished we had more from them.

        Budgets and attracting businesses to Antioch are so central and I am a huge fan of the concept of the gadfly that pokes and prods each other to stretch our boundaries.

        Complimentary is good. On School Board Hack had Union background and the teacher pulse; Gray was good with spreadsheets;and the business model; Smith had Antioch history and all the players down pat; Motts was community and PTA workings; I was. I was told, the communicator and guy who bridged different temperments and ideologies…..It all worked. ……

  13. Mike,

    I said you accused my PIECE of being pathetic, I knew you were not saying that of me, I appreciate what you have out together; well-done sites and a wide swath.

    Incidentally, Pittsburg has allowed one speaker per candidate from public in addition to their own ‘closing’ remarks. AUSD asked questions at each round. Just some more ideas to beef it up.

    One small note- I belatedly discovered a comment you made during campaign paraphrasing me hat I was not optimistic on Antioch crime. I am an optimist but merely waned to say that without passing a tax measure it will be years before we get significant boots on the ground. In the meantime I like New York model of tackling perhaps most immediate, doable things… grafitti, blight, truancy, gangs.. Rohnert Park cracked down on truancy with a daytime teen curfew and had a 75% drop in crime. Worth looking into, my friend.
    .

  14. Reading these comments is funny. It’s politics, people will be upset no matter what. Walter refuses to give his own process and solution, say who was the best candidate or say what variables should be used to select a candidate. As for Take Back Antioch, Burk is right, they got political, not the end of the world but at least admit it and we can all move on.

    Who cares on the process, it was going to be a lefty anyway so it was never going to be Davis so people should get over it.

  15. Frank,

    I normally don’t blog and am just about ready to put this subject to rest.

    You definitely are a realist! We agree- the direction of the Council was set- it was destined to be Tiscareno or Manuel (Freitas just added to the ‘drama’) so what difference does it matter who I think was a better choice? We probably are agreeing- my thesis was to say that calling it a selection based on application and interview was essentially a charade. The direction was set..Tony may or may not be the best man but I wished the decision was not virtually foregone based on political leaning and past friendship. I would have preferred intentionally looking for balance and some loyal oppositon.

    if the appointment process is used again and the public, who in a June referendum voted by well over 70% against appointments, is sort of ignored then, yes. I do have some preliminary observations on process- improvement (see take back antioch facebook page).

    I have not sat down to research yet what other models exist but it wouldn’t hurt for the community to do that.

    Sensing your realism you may argue why foster a sense of rigor and openness when there really is none, and the evening is for formalizing. That argument, too, has merits. We concur; the die is almost invariably pre-cast if you choose the appointment process.

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