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May 26, 2013

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David; now you're a philosopher, too? But I agree with you about Joe - great guy but he, too, had a few "bloodsucking assholes" he had to defer to.

You aptly define the dilemma of El Paso and the CM form of government, that we both agree should stay in place. The problem for El Paso is that the CM has too much power and the mayor not enough in this structure to be more than "Ed McMahon", a roll that seems to fit Mayor Cook.

You are only partially right about CC because CC cannot lead either as disparate group unless it is united by a party agenda and party hierarchy, ala' the state and federal form. Imagine a Congress comprised entirely of independents, because that is what the City is now. In a partisan system, you vote for the person but you also get the party and its agenda. So you (sort of) have an idea of which way the CH wind might blow until the next election.

So who leads now? Not the mayor anymore and not the CC because, even if it comes together on one issue, it may differ on others. This leaves a power vacuum that JW has exploited as far as I can see from the TORA trail of emails. Unless you know differently that a quorum of CC met informally (secretly) and told her to accept and not negotiate what was offered by MS.

Well, if you want to be a good political philosopher, tell us how powers need to be divided so that the CM is not the focus of power who can exploit the disparate loyalties of individual CC members. HINTS: Partisan elections so you know the city agenda you are voting for; a division of powers to the mayor, e.g., the mayor gets the functions that set city direction (Planning, Economic Development, Budget) and the CM gets the functions that implement it; we go back to a strong mayor form of government (not our favorite choice).

Partisan elections do not have to be just Dem vs GOP, either. I could see a Latino block, an environmental group, fiscal conservative (me), the Jesus Party...a kind of parliamentary form of CC. It could help El Paso voters to get off their butts and politically active, too, because they would know that their party speaks for their interests and not for the traditional El Paso back room boys. Unless Norma is the majority party chair, hers and voices like hers will be muted.

All of this is why the stadium issue is, IMHO, the defining issue for El Paso and for its future. It brings together all the worst of what we have now and need to get rid of, but at least it is in our face and we have an opportunity to deal with it so there is a transparent (I didn't say honest) process of government instead of the back room cronyism this deal and the CC embodies.

I do not see a prosperous future for El Paso if we go on in the way the stadium issue illustrates, that is a city captive to vested financial interests that use the organs of government to transfer public wealth to themselves

You said, " The mayor of El Paso does nothing but break the occasional tie vote and play Ed McMahon for a few hours on Tuesdays. The position is practically ceremonial at this point."

That's true for a mayor who chooses to do nothing and whose only interest is feeding his ego by being called "mayor."

A great mayor can lead, create an agenda, get council on board and get good stuff done.

But you're right when you say that won't happen with Leeser.

Leeser will be as mediocre and weak as Cook was. Maybe even more mediocre and embarrassing. At least Cook could put sentences together.

And if you think the media is weak now, wait until Leeser is mayor and they are afraid of covering anything at City Hall because Leeser will pull his ad money.

Cortney will be the leader on council now (just as Ortega was under Cook). She will be the defacto mayor while Leeser cuts ribbons, stares at his name on the door, kisses up to Norma Chavez and prays he never has to break a veto.

By the way, David, Norma Chavez reads your blog religiously. She just quoted one of your posters on her FB (re: "defacto mayor")!!!!

She can't stay away...not from Leeser, not from you.

Poor pathetic spinster.

Edie...thanks for the backup...every time I post she likes to pretend she didn't see my post and then post a post that would suggest that she is absolutely clueless about exactly the issue I posted... Go figure... Makes her a doble mentirosa really... But she won't know it cause she doesn't see it and all.

Last week, Norma loved being talked about on the blogs, just asking that writers "spell my name right."

Now she thinks she's going to ruin David K by suing him for libel for allegedly misquoting her.

Oh, Norma ... [sigh]

The last guy to sue DavidK lost his case and then recently lost his law license for 6 months, arrested and posted bail for contempt of court. How lucky do you feel Norma.

Does normaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa want to be city manager? Just asking. Look at all who notmaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa is supporting.

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