My take on the candidate's forum 4/26
Fred arrived late; lots of folks left early.
As one early departure put it: "I already know how they are going to answer anyway -- don't know why we bothered to come."
There were plenty of words bandied around about the comprehensive plan; about the Padre Blvd. median project and about sidewalks and pedestrian safety. What I found most striking was what didn't come up: Specifically, the term "beach." It was not one of the top three priorities of a single candidate and was only mentioned once the whole night (near as I can tell) in the closing remarks of Mayor Pinkerton.
Have we really lost sight of what brings people here? Are we really so ready to just take our biggest asset for granted?
Notes to candidates:
Fred - you get an A for effort and and E for execution. You should have had a better plan and not cut things so close -- you know that delays out of Houston are frequent and unavoidable.
Joann - No fair sounding so reasonable, knowledgeable, well-prepared and well-qualified. Clearly you are hiding a very nasty skeleton in a closet somewhere... (just kidding!)
Alex - we are convinced you love the island, but try to get specific about how you are going to show leadership and how you are going to do this better than the others.
Kirk - I think you have done a good job as alderman but your "deja vu" comment poking Fred for not being there was... unbecoming.
Phillip - check your facts: Vegas has already discovered the "family friendly" plan was not working for them and the newest ad campaign plays on the "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas" theme.
Phillip, Kirk & (to a lesser extent) Alex and Joe Buck: You all talk a good talk about how important communication is -- but apparently refuse to use the excellent tools afforded by the first candidate forum and the SPIRIT online forum. You may have philosophical differences with this organization, but you are needlessly alienating a large percentage of the voters and playing to that "us vs. them" divisiveness thing by refusing to participate.
Update: I am fixing to leave town for nearly three weeks and will miss the most interesting part of this campaign season... alas! At any rate, I trust the voters on SPI to not be blinded by the amount of money being thrown into this race and instead voting for the candidates that will so the best job of representing the interests of all the residents.