Republic Council Endorsements

The Republic published Scottsdale city council endorsements today, again. Once again, they are completely nonsensical.

On one side of the chasm are three candidates who look to the future. On the other, three candidates ready to lead the city into the 1960s.

“Lead the city into the 1960’s?” Based on what? Wanting to follow the guidelines of the voter-ratified 2001 General Plan, instead of the defective, voter-rejected 2012 alternative? How is 2001, “the 1960’s?”

Virginia Korte, Eric Luoma and incumbent Suzanne Klapp have deep roots in the community. They have been involved with numerous and diverse organizations, giving them a big-pic­ture understanding of the community.

Guy Phillips, Copper Phillips, and Chris Schaffner have the same deep roots, and demonstrated (as opposed to just stated) respect for residents and neighborhoods.

When have you seen Korte speaking for residents in a “contentious zoning case?” (Hint: Never).

When is the last time you saw Luoma at a city council meeting fighting for a neighborhood? (Hint: Never, in fact, as far as I know he’s never even been to the microphone at the Kiva, on ANY matter).

Phillips, Phillips, and Schaffner have also been involved with “numerous and diverse organizations,” and in many ways understand a lot more about the community than the three Chamber candidates.

Most importantly, they [Klapp, Korte, Luoma} demonstrate independent thinking. Scottsdale is best served by council members open to new ideas, asking tough questions to measure a proposal’s strength, not be­cause they want to kill something just because it’s new.

Their thinking is certainly not independent of the Chamber. “Tough questions?” Seriously? I’ve never heard a single tough question from any of the three.

When Klapp speaks, she has some­thing to say. She asks good questions that get to the heart of a matter. She makes solid, logical arguments. On contentious zoning is­sues, she weighs the desires of a neighbor­hood and the welfare of the city as a whole and generally arrives at the right answer.

Klapp has said almost nothing from the dais in the months leading up to the election. That’s probably good for her, because virtually everything she’s said during the candidate forums she didn’t skip has been well-polished nonsense that is frequently self-contradictory.

As far as, “contentious zoning issues,” and, “weighs the desires of a neighborhood,” she’s voted against the neighborhoods and residents every time. Every time.

The Republic’s accolades for Korte are a match for her nebulous campaign platform. She dances around every hard question.

Ditto Luoma, minus the involvement at City Hall. I didn’t even know the name until he filed to run, and I’ve been harassing the city council for ten years.

As far as, “Luoma and his young family live downtown because they like its vibran­cy,” I guess Luoma forgot to tell Leger (or whoever is writing the Scottsdale Republic opinion page these days) that he moved out of the Waterfront and now lives in a home north of Camelback.

In this campaign, he has advanced creative ideas…

Seriously? Lacking advancement of ANY ideas up to his campaign, he managed to throw together some sort of campaign platform? That’s “creative?” That makes him an endorsement-worthy candidate? Heck, let’s give him a Nobel prize while we’re at it!

None of these folks is despicable. They are all pleasant, and they’ve all been pleasant to me even when perhaps I’ve been a little less charitable toward them. That doesn’t make them good candidates to lead our city.

So, I’ll save the real vitriol for the Arizona Republic tabloid we call a newspaper. Seriously, guys? Is this the best you can do?

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  1. John, I feel your pain when you talk about the Republic, but ease my mind by seeing them for who they are. I think your expectation is that the Republic, by some stretch of the imagination, is produced to deliver the news to the citizens. The fact is they produce to deliver advertising paid for by businesses..and where there is space offer a few lines of content. The executives then sit around and wonder why their circulation is down. So, lower your expectations for the marketing circulation that includes some bit of information called the Az Republic. Can you imagine real journalistic talent wanting to work there?

    1. You are, of course, absolutely right. However, the expectation (however unrealistic) of the average reader is that the the Republic IS delivering the news, and I continue to hold out hope that I can help them (the readers AND the Republic) see the error of their ways.

  2. Sadly, I was once one of those with an expectation that journalists only provided facts. I am sure some do, but that likely don’t work for a sinking ship like the Republic. Keep pounding on them and I hope to see you soon.

    1. To be fair, the real working journalists (Duckett, Gately, et. al.) seem to care and try to get their facts straight. However, it is clear to me that when we sit down for an extended discussion of the facts and what is actually printed from that discussion (if anything) amounts to a sound bite, there’s some malfunction in the editorial process.

  3. John,
    Thanks for a great website! I have found myself to be pretty much in agreement with most of the stuff you write. I appreciated the ballot recommendations you posted for the March election. I looked for some similar recommendations for this November ballot, but was uable to find them. Will you be offering your opinion? Thanks, Mark

    1. I will, Mark! Thanks for asking. You probably gathered that I support Schaffner, Schaffner, and Phillips for the city election. After very careful evaluation, I support Penzone for sheriff. I’ll get more recommendations out soon!

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