After all that has gone on... fallen out... burned to the ground... however you'd like to describe the last few months, it's funny that everybody ended up at the same place - building the arena of emptiness on top of the newly invented neighborhood of "Duranguito."
Political careers are bruised and battered, grand juries assembled, local volunteers disfranchised and it was all for nothing. Only in El Paso.
The only thing I guess I could say to the politicos is that they need not freak out so often. Looking back on past elections you'll see incumbents almost always win - no matter how awful they are. Knee jerk reactions to issues like "Duranguito" aren't needed. Vote on the issue and move on. The voters always move on as well.
Here are some general suggestions for city council members - current and prospective members
1. Stop writing shit down. Have you fools not seen that emails, texts and even hand written notes during council meetings have all caused council members a ton of grief? Don't text - pick up the God damn phone and call. If you can't understand that even the most innocent communication can be spun into a bad place, then I can't help you. Everything a blogger can get a hold of is a potential shit storm for you. Take the bloggers out of the equation by not feeding them your emails and texts.
2. Do not fear community activists/ankle-biters. They bitch about everything, but they have no means by which to make you pay for not listening to them. Freaking out and having secret meetings to reverse your plans is just dumb. When regular people make time to show up - listen to them.
3. Did I mention not putting anything in writing - EVER? Yeah, don't write anything down.
4. Realize that the Shapleigh Campers are a political faction that will destroy you at some point. If you're going to do something they don't like, do it carefully. They own the newspaper, bloggers and the whispers network around town. For example, they are still pissed about the Black Lives Matter comment made by the police chief and have vowed to ruin the lives/careers of every single person who didn't call for the chief's head. Think about that - that was months ago and they're still screwing over people whose only crime was not hating the chief enough.
5. Fight back. If somebody files an ethics complaint against you, then you must file five against them. Do not make the sport of messing with your political career easy on anyone. When somebody points the finger at you, it's time you hire a private investigator to follow them around to you catch them doing something wrong. I don't care if it's failing to wash their hands after using the bathroom - make their lives a living hell. Think I'm kidding? Look at how the most prolific political leaders in our history (recent and not so recent) conducted their business. You think LBJ got where he was by being nice? The Clintons? Hamilton - Burr? Nice guys finish last. It's a fact.
6. Do not put your thoughts on paper. Maybe I mentioned that before...
7. Don't be afraid to have your item on the agenda fail. When you're scared you'll be voted down you start conferring with other council member and that's where you screw up. Stop canvassing your votes. You get just as many points for trying as you do for succeeding.
I think that's it.... maybe I'll have more.
Real quick thought on the hysterical commission drama and Jaime Abeytia's crusade to convince people the sky is not blue.
Read his latest post HERE.
The first question is easy - Why does Jaime care so much? I'm the only person who has said a word about this. My only motive is to point that Bernie Sargent is a good guy who loves El Paso and should be involved with the hysterical commission. Even if they did violate the open meetings act... it's not that big of deal for an advisory committee. There are much bigger problems to complain about with local government than a few history nerds breaking meeting rules. Why would Jaime need to refute my claims?
I think he cares so much because he's being told to care so much by Judge Escobar... through Commissioner Perez. The Shapleigh Campers really want that arena for some reason. The hysterical commission, for a brief time, was able to keep that from happening. Escobar and friends don't want to seem like they are the type to deal with adversaries by removing them from positions of advantage, so they are having Jaime trump up some weird excuse to try and convince everyone that's not the case. But everybody knows that's why those two guys were ousted. The timing of it is just too perfect. Only a moron would assume it was because of something else. Like Jaime states - they were breaking open meetings rules for a decade and that didn't seem to bother the Shapleigh Campers back then. It's a simple case of having the jury replaced when they didn't come to the verdict you wanted.
Remember point #5 from above? That's what Escobar and friends are doing right there and that's precisely why she has had such an amazing career. Somebody got in her way and she used her means to remove that road block. It's simple, people. It's how politics work. I have no idea why Jaime wants to cover up that reality. None of you really care about the fate of two history nerds, so why is he putting up such a front?