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Thursday, April 29, 2010

Getting on time to vote

As we await the arrival of our ballot in upcoming elections, we're winnowing down our choices. For Portland City Council, we're voting for Mary Volm, and for Multnomah County commissioner, we're voting for Paul Van Orden.

A vote for Volm is not without risks. She seems an edgy person, and her personal affiliation with the zany Adams recall guy hasn't gained her any mainstream cred. But she's the only one in her race expressing a lick of common sense about the dangerous direction in which the city is headed. Dan Saltzman is more to blame for that direction than just about anyone else, and Jesse Cornett is the next Erik Sten, all the way down to the "clean money" machine. You can almost smell the dopey ideas in his pocket. The other guys in the primary don't seem able to win a runoff against Saltzman. Volm might be able to, if everything falls her way.

We've already gone through the process of elimination for the county race, but to reiterate: Chuck Currie is yet another Stennie, a major no-no, and with a Roman collar, no less; and Karol Collymore seems too much under the wing of her boss, County Chair Jeff Cogen, who in turn still seems too much like his old boss, Saltzman. Plus, the ominous "time for a change" bleat that came out of Deborah (the Latest) Kafoury when Ted Wheeler left town was downright scary. Roberta Phillip is gone, and that leaves Van Orden, who's far more worth a flyer than the recycled henchpeople from Earl the Pearl and Ron Wyden (R-N.Y.).

In the Metro president race, Rex and His Bicycle are definitely out. Backed by the Sam-Rand Twins, public employees' unions, and developers, the guy's the ultimate symbol of what's wrong in Portland. That leaves former Portland "planning" guru Bob Stacey; and Tom Hughes, who's (gasp) the mayor of Hillsboro. Not an easy call, but we'll be voting for Hughes, if for no other reason than being tired of the wasteful, juvenile "planning" mafia that's quickly running our local government into bankruptcy.

Our votes have never put a local candidate over the top, and we apologize to Volm, Van Orden, and Hughes if our favor winds up hurting their candidacies. Especially since we're not overly enthusiastic about any of them. But people ask how we're voting, and so we answer.

One thing's for sure: If Burkholder, Saltzman, and Collymore or Currie win, Portland will probably soon be building a lovely, mostly empty Convention Center hotel to go along with its lovely, mostly empty Convention Center. It might happen even if just Burkholder gets in. And the wild spending spree will continue right up to a big crash, not too far off. Go Greek!

Comments (25)

Argh, this is sad, I'm in your camp using elimination to vote for people. So I guess I hold my now, vote and pray.

This is like every Oregon election now.

Jack, one of the things I often hope for is that your voice becomes more "mainstream" and that the public at large would denounce incumbents for the sorry shape that Portland is in.

Unfortunately, Willy Week's endorsement of Saltzman is certainly not helpful in this regard, and TriMet's selection of McFarlane underscores how these bureaucracies think (or don't).

Watching all of this leaves me with the feeling that Adams actually has a shot at re-election and I just can't stomach that...unless it's from my La-z-Boy that will have been relocated outside of Portland city limits.

Volm seems a little to crazy to me. I kind of like Cornett. Is there a reason other than his public funding that you think he's Sten in disguise?

Watching all of this leaves me with the feeling that Adams actually has a shot at re-election and I just can't stomach that...unless it's from my La-z-Boy that will have been relocated outside of Portland city limits.

Of COURSE he'll win re-election! People around here have short memories, and are distracted by inconsequential gestures. Sam can run the city into the ground from month 1 through month 42, and will then spend months 43-48 appearing at bike rides and at organic gardens to show how hip and progressive he is, and he'll get re-elected, especially since the idiots who bungled the recall have managed to let people assume that anyone who discusses Sam's scandal must be a backwoods homophobe.

Isn't Cornett a BlueOregon "person".

BlueOregon people have never criticized anything done by Portland or the rest of the planning regime.

So where and how would he be a help?

I'm planning on voting for Mary Volm, mostly in hopes of forcing Saltzman into a runoff. I have reservations about her, and in the event of a runoff may in the end decide to hold my nose and vote for Saltzman anyway. But it would be a real disservice to voters if he's allowed to mumble his way back into office with no competition. He needs to be called to the carpet to defend his vision, votes, and management record.

I like Cornett. I'm of roughly the same age as him, and support many of the same things he does, so I suppose I should be a natural constituent of his. But like Collymore in the County race, he seems too much like a young climber in a hurry. I just don't see him having the attention span, cojones, or gravitas to take on the vested interests and hard issues our city must grapple with. I think he'd end up being a reliable third vote for Sam and Randy-he'd be easy prey to the glib, smarmy charm of the former and the bullying of the latter.

I'm very happy not to be voting for anyone in
the city of Portland and/or Multnomah county. (Although I'd love to be eligible to vote against Earl [what did his high-
school classmates call him?] Blumenauer.)

Seems like everyone should read this before voting:


Don't feel bad about voting for Hughes. He's a very solid choice. The fact that he's from the suburbs is a strength in the current environment, not a weakness. Portland is an echo chamber, and most insiders don't even perceive much of the insanity, much less have the will to do anything about it.

Jack: Dead on, on Mary Volm, your sound pick here will offset the one sided theme of the tax and spend council.

Somebody also posted that SAM, will be re-elected, not if you run,

We have had our verbal differences over the time you have had this blog, and you know that I'm old and grumpy and I STILL, stand after many years of fighting and issue of community safety, that certain things concerning that issue must be corrected.

I have come to the point where to stop the bleeding of this place in so many ways...we must eliminate those who cause this bleeding(by the ballot of course)and I call on you to do it.

If not, then I can tell you that since you have endorsed her, and if the "O" will do the same....there is a person so close to city hall, so close on every aspect of the city inner workings, that person could dig up bones, that person in a head to head, could take "slinky" out, and of course...so could you.

We also know, that you have said no before...but, Jack, we are in worse times then before, and its simply getting to a near life or death place for this city to have leadership in a "fire fight" for the city not to fail, if it is not stopped from where we all see it...all of course except the "SLIMMY" leadership of this very day.

Dear readers of this blog...it's time to gang up on Bogdanski!!!

Jack, if you run, I will contribute the maximum allowable to your campaign. Count on it.

Jack, you know I am one of your biggest fans so don't take this wrong, but I wonder why you resolutely use the royal "we" in stating your preferences for the upcoming elections; to whit -"As we await the arrival of our ballot in upcoming elections, we're winnowing down our choices. For Portland City Council, we're voting for Mary Volm, and for Multnomah County commissioner, we're voting for Paul Van Orden."

Does this mean that you assume that we the readers automatically agree with you? Is your family voting with you? Is there more than one of you? I guess my question is: Who is the "we" to whom you refer?

See Jack, don't back out on this one, HELL,I'm retired, I would personally be your body guard from one Randy Leonard,it would be an honor.

Randy would lose more weight, and all his hair, and his mind, if you beat out his great goal for the city...that being him as mayor.

Dean, or RANDY, maybe, we would be commonsense logical people...would that be you?

Thanks Jack for your endorsement which it so much stronger than any of the mainstream or marginal (Mercury) media. You're dead on when it comes to the facts about the city and you call it as you see it. I appreciate your directness and truth-telling. I know many city employees read it as they know the toxic mess they face everyday.

Ted and Eric, I'm up for coffee if you'd be interested in a real conversation. Email is Mary@maryforpdx.com.

Lee and Eric- make that Mary@maryvolmforportland.com. My it volunteer just corrected me. Sorry.

I think you're a shoe-in for an open seat, Jack. But it would be a bloodbath if you took on McCreepy or McFireman. Pretty sure you wouldn't have time to blog, either.

Still, I would donate 40 hours to your campaign, and some cash. Or you could run against McFish, but then I would have to stay on the sidelines.

I agree with the lesser of evils approach and will vote for Volm on that basis and hope she stands for real change around here.

On another election topic, last night Bradbury's campaign called my house. I had a devil of a time getting the caller to identify himself but any stranger asking for me by my legal first name is automatically suspect. I figured that it was going to be a request for money so I said I was not interested. I am not interested in financing any of the current crop of candidates for governor.

Mary, I might take you up on "a real conversation". My remarks on other posts is not necessarily against you, as hopefully you can tell, but I think you need to tell the potential voters how you might come down on some issues that will be before Council.

I know it's hard to project how one might vote or even think. But, let's pretend that once again SoWhat comes before Council and asks for another bond offering (as Bojack has recently reported on the last bond sale) for another public expenditure, like more general fund money to build streets for OHSU in SoWhat-how would you vote?

Would you consider putting a hold on Milwaukie Lightrail (at least the $32 Million of Portland's part) until the Sellwood Bridge is built, or economic times are much better?

Would you at least make a motion to rescind Sam's $20 Million theft of Water/Sewer money for Bikeways, even knowing you may not have the 3 votes, but at least there would be an open discussion and citizen participation?

These are the kinds of questions that many voters want answers to. Openness in the election cycle is just as important as calling for it afterward, if elected.

Saying "I'm for jobs" means nothing. Tell us how you'll do it. That is how my conversation would begin if we had coffee. But I would recommend having "coffee" with the rest of the voters.

Bogdanski knows where the bones are buried, he knows the financial pitfalls this place faces.

He may, as other cities face decisions, certain groups or projects go unfunded, there has been a free lunch for these people or issues, but that it is pass time for these money "soakers" to die of their own PC CORRECTNESS.

Riots are starting in places,and its; clear money can, and will be the issue.

You can stand around, or you can stop it, someone must have the courage.

Thanks, guys, but with my personal circumstances, I can't afford public office. Maybe when I'm old enough to start collecting my pension I'll be crazy enough to try. Then I call pull a Leonard-Potter and take a City Council check on top of a retirement check.

Happy to address your questions and have coffee with anyone that wants to meet up- an email to mary@maryvolmforportland.com and we can schedule.
1.NO. SoWa developers and OHSU have not fulfilled their end of the bargain which is 30% set-aside for affordable and low income housing. The City's part of the deal is complete. I've even suggested taking possession of some of those condos that aren't selling for the what is owed in the agreement for affordable housing. I know it's out there, but they have broken the agreement - oops they are out of money?!!

2. Milwaukie Light Rail is even worse than you are projecting. Check out the BES budget along with Water for 2010/2011; it has $45 million for sewer LR construction - and what is the benefit to Portland rate payers? The City has bankrolled light rail everywhere- something I simply don't understand - while Tri-Met is cutting service to those who need it the most.

3. Anyone who has heard me speak about this knows that I have called the Mayor's raid on Sewer near criminal and a shell game with the words "green streets." I will continue to discuss this issue long after I am elected. I created the public budget forums years ago and we explained that water and sewer revenues are dedicated funds just like the gas tax, that cannot be used for any other purpose. I was the first to bring this up of all the candidates and interestingly, now Saltzman says he will not support it. Can someone please inform him he's already voted in favor of using sewer revenues for bikes?

And please don't get me started on PGE park. Mark my words,- the league is folding in the near term and Merritt will walk away from his obligation....and those bonds are backed by the general fund which pays for Police, Fire, Parks...etc.

Finally, I worked for economic development for the State right after the collapse of the timber industry. I know what it takes to attract new business and industry, as well as identify emerging, relocating and start-up businesses. I also was the first to discuss the sharp increases in the City's permits, fee, taxes and licenses that are driving business under or out. Government does not create jobs, but we sure create the environment for healthy economic growth...or not.

Coffee anyone?

Well, it never hurts to ask, I Have a phone call into the person close to city hall I mentioned.

He cares about the whole city not just one person, it's times like these,(and they will get worse)that leaders who really are either born to it, or aspire for the greater good,(LIKE THOSE AWFUL ORIGINAL "TEA BAGGERS") that wanted something more then a comfortable situation...as history serves me, some lost more then a 401K.

If there was a hope in hell,I'd do it, but the PC crowd,you know "peace niks" here would fire bomb my house...those non violent ones that riot here on occasion.

The elected ones here are so corrupt, even serious money here is afraid, the cops, what is left of the good ones are now hamstrung,the unions are now thugs of old, but wear Berkinstocks and teach our kids, those nuts, and those nuts in Salem, who turn the real nuts out in "secure" residential" facilities" are in charge...and yes,I WOULD RUN,even after saying all that, but I'd never get the support..case most here are all talk, and no action.


"Is there a reason other than his public funding that you think he's Sten in disguise?"

Maybe because he has no real-world experience, never had a real job and has no plan to cut spending.

I'm still suspsicious of Volm also.

Steve: See above...if she is against any SAMMY SPENDING she has my vote.

You must re-read Jack's picksm, there spot on.

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