Saturday, October 31, 2009

WCF Halloween Special: Has Halloween Become Overcommercialized?

A recent poll of American 5th graders shockingly finds that 63% could identify the cartoon character Jack Skellington, while only 14% could identify Al'ghol, the ghoul that dwells in burial grounds!

In The Know: Has Halloween Become Overcommercialized?
Have fun tonight kids... But watch your backs. And please get back to us with your comments, if you spot Al'ghol, errr we mean Boss Godfrey tonight, trick or treating and stealing souls (campaigning for Hains, Garner and Phipps, in other words) in his usual Eddie Munster costume.

Consultant to South Salt Lake: Don't Bond For Market Station -- A Lesson For Ogden City Voters Too

Keeping Ogden from sinking deeper into the debt hole the Godfrey administration has dug for it will depend on the independence of the Council members we elect Tuesday

By Curmudgeon

The SL Trib has a story up this morning which is well worthy of a good close look, as Ogden voters stand poised on the eve of Tuesday's municipal election:
Consultant to South Salt Lake: Don't Bond For Market Station
It seem a grand development project [mixed condo and retail project --- sound familiar?] planned near a coming street car station has fallen into financial problems. Fortunately for the City of South Salt Lake, the city did not put the taxpayers on the hook as guarantors of the bonds for the project [as Ogden did].

The developer has now asked South Salt Lake to float a $9.5 million dollar bond to buy land from him at the site in order to allow him to pay off most of a $10.5 million dollar debt to America First Credit Union, which is about to foreclose on the loan.

And what did South Salt Lake do? It hired a consultant. [Ogden voters please note: its consultant was not the developer.] And South Salt Lake's independent consultant has told the city not to go into millions in debt to bail out the developer.

The story is well worth reading as an illustration of how competently managed cities handle development without putting the taxpayers' on the hook for millions. And it offers, I think, a good example of why it is important on Tuesday to elect independent council members for whom fiscal responsibility and fiscal conservatism are not empty phrases to be trotted out at election time and then forgotten.

The administration's bad judgment, endorsed by a rubber stamp council six years ago has loaded Ogden down with millions in new debt to bankroll privately owned commercial developments --- we're paying $750,000 a year right now to service the bonds the Mayor assured his rubber-stamp Council the city would never have to pay --- and the Administration wants to offer millions more in public funds to help bankroll a new hotel project at the Junction. Given that, electing council members of proven independence who will not simply become yes-men for the administration's latest multi million dollar obsession is important.

Ms. Van Hooser has proven her independence during her two years previously on the Council. [Her opponent, Mr. Hains, is yet another realtor PAC "yes man" for the Godfrey Gaggle, it seems.] Mr. Garcia has proven his independence in office as well. Mr. Stephens too on key votes has shown the kind of independent judgment Ogden needs on the Council, and he's also demonstrated throughout his tenure a commitment to finding middle ground and workable compromises when such are possible. [They aren't always.]

Keeping Ogden from sinking deeper into the debt hole the Godfrey administration has dug for it will depend on the independence of the Council members we elect Tuesday. I hope voters will keep that firmly in mind on election day.

Once again, take a look at the Trib story here. There is much to be learned from it, I think.

WSU Wildcats v. Montana Grizzlies Game Day Thread - UPDATED

This could indeed be THE BIG WSU college football week of the season -- but make no mistake -- it's NOT about revenge

No need to overemphasize the importance of today's Game. If our WSU Wildcats can hang a loss on league rival Montana, our Wildcats can bring themselves even with Montana at in the "games lost" column and have a shot at controlling their own conference championship destiny from here on out. Here's this morning's teaser from the Standard-Examiner, which hammers a theme we've been thinking about all week ... this isn't really a revenge game, but rather just another waypoint in our beloved Wildcats' game-by-game quest to finish the conference season with only a single loss. We thus believe Jason Asay got it exactly right:
'Cats just want a Saturday win at Montana
As an added bonus, here's the pregame buzz from the Grizzlies' home town newspaper:
Griz, Wildcats ready to roll
So here we go again, setting up another WSU Wildcats dedicated game day thread, whereby we WCU Wildcats fans can comment while viewing today's game, (which will be broadcast online on the Big Sky TEEVEE around 1:00 p.m.,) or whilst listening via the live audio broadcast from KLO radio, WSU's flagship sports radio station.

Have at it, Wildcats fans!

We'll of course be back with the final score later.

Update 10/31/09 11:39 a.m.: Thanks to the recent flurry of comments from SEVERAL sharp-eyed WSU fans downthread, we're now delighted to report that today's game will also be broadcast on KJZZ TV. Special thanks for keeping us on our toes, WILDCAT, Sticky Residue and KJZZ. We're developing a new appreciation for those in the media who compose TV/radio sports-broadcast logs. Thanks for setting us straight, and doing it forthwith!

Update 11/1/09 6:00 a.m.: For those WSU fans who may not have heard the bad news... Final score: Montana 31, WSU 10. Jason Asay provides the post-game lowdown:
Missoula meltdown / Griz take advantage of Wildcat turnovers
For an excellent writeup on what remain of WSU's hopes for a post-season playoff slot, be sure to check out Mr. Asay's companion story here:
Wildcats' playoff chances still alive after loss, but margin for error is slim

The Gondola-Examiner Issues Its First Two Emerald City Council Endorsements

What a shame that the lumpencitzens can't vote at regular intervals to fill the Standard-Examiner publisher's seat

Three days before the 2009 Ogden City Municipal Election, just as earlier threatened, the Gondola-Examiner finally comes out this morning with its first two Ogden City Council endorsements. It appears to us that the core pro-Godfrey management faction at the Godfrey House Propaganda Organ of old remains alive and well:
OUR VIEW: Dean for Ogden council
OUR VIEW: Garner for Ogden council
(Be sure to view the Standard's candidate interview videos, which are embedded in each of the respective pages.)

In making these endorsements, and rejecting two seasoned sitting council incumbents, the Standard appears to be engaging in its own political crapshoot, preferring the "devils they don't know," over the the "devils they do." These endorsements come as no surprise of course. Councilmen Jesse Garcia and Doug Stephens are two conscientious council members who've fairly consistently voted as members of the fiscally conservative council majority. These two have always been an anathema to publisher Lee Carter, and the carpetbagging Suits from Sanduskey, who'd prefer a council majority which would borrow and spend the taxpayers of Ogden into economic oblivion.

What a shame it is, we believe, that the lumpencitzens can't vote at regular intervals to fill the Standard-Examiner publisher's seat. Alas, that's not how the system works.

That's it for now, gentle readers.

Who will be the first to comment?

Friday, October 30, 2009

Is At-Large Seat "A" Council Candidate Mark Hains in Violation Of Ogden City Campaign Finance Disclosure Ordinances?

Hains's own campaign finance reports reveal $3000 in donations from a single political action committee entity

by Dan Schroeder

Lest Mr. Phipps grab all our attention...

There's a very interesting entry in the disclosure form just filed by Mark Hains, a candidate for the Ogden City Council At-large "A" Seat. He reports receiving a $1500 contribution from the Utah Association of Realtors (UAR).

The problem is, he already received $1500 in August from the Northern Wasatch Association of Realtors (NWAR). And according NWAR's own disclosure statement (available from the Lt. Governor's web site), NWAR received 100% of its money from UAR. In other words, NWAR is not an independent organization--it's just the local arm of UAR.

In my opinion, this means that Mr. Hains has actually received $3000 from UAR, in violation of the $1500 contribution limit, Per Ogden City Code Section 1-8-3.

The remedy for such a violation is for Mr. Hains to return the additional money and file an amended disclosure statement. (Please, let's not demand that he be disqualified.)

2009 Emerald City Election Update: A Thoroughly Embarrassed David Phipps Speaks With the Press

Phipps hints he may seek emergency relief from his election disqualification through the courts

Scott Schwebke has augmented yesterday's brief report this morning, concerning Council Seat "B" David Phipps's disqualification from the November 3 election, with a fleshed-out story, reporting that Mr. Phipps may have not have entirely thrown in the towel in this matter, and that he is instead considering scheduling an emergency hearing, seeking a court order overturning his statutorily mandated election disqualification by Ogden City Recorder Cindi Mansell:
Late-filing Ogden candidate David Phipps disqualified, 'embarrassed'
Phipps argues that he was confused about the drop-dead Thursday filing deadline, (even though it had already been extended by one full day, and none of the other council candidates seem to have had any trouble making the deadline.) Phipps also readily admits that he's "... struggled with focusing on details," and remarks that explaining to his campaign contributors this latest campaign blunder (in a long string of campaign blunders) "hasn't been an easy thing."

Notably, Mr. Schwebke contacted one of Mr. Phipps's most generous campaign donors and elicited this delicious quote. Let's just say that Mr. Ostermiller is a true master of understatement:

Mike Ostermiller, chief executive officer of the Northern Wasatch Association of Realtors, which gave $1,500 to Phipps' campaign, said he is disappointed Phipps has been disqualified over the missed deadline.
"I hope he can figure out a way to stay on the ballot," he said Thursday.
For some odd reason, we're conjuring up this psychic image of Mr. Ostermiller and the rest of Mr. Phipps's real estate development donor-friends, gathering together and gently urging Mr. Phipps to "get his head together" and find some way to get his bumbling derriere back into the race:

We'll be standing by watching for the latest effort of the ever-inept Mr. Phipps to again make a comic public spectacle of himself.

Rules? Rules are only meant to only apply to the little people. As everyone ought to know by now, all loyal Godfreyites are exempt from the rules.

And the beat goes on...

Update 10/30/09 10:03 a.m.: For the benefit of our gentle readers, Elected Official has submitted a comment and a statutory citation to applicable provisions of the Utah Code:
Utah Code, Title 20A -- Election Code
Update 10/31/09 11:27 a.m.: A day late and a half-dollar short, the Salt Lake Tribune has now picked up on this story too:
Phipps disqualified in Ogden Council race
To the Trib's credit however, this morning's story does however provide this interesting new information:
"After speaking with attorneys, Phipps said there is little chance to appeal the ruling."
What the heck. Phipps coulda thrown himself on the mercy of the court, and pleaded the "I'm an Idiot" defense, right?

And so ends the short political career of perhaps the greatest political screw-up in Ogden history.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Breaking: Boss Godfrey's Hand-Picked Realtor Carpetbagger Ejected from the City Council Race

2009 Ogden Municipal Election ALERT!

By Jennifer Neil

This just in:
Phipps disqualified from Ogden election
OGDEN -- City council candidate David Phipps has been disqualified from Tuesday's general election because he failed to file a campaign finance disclosure statement in on time.
Phipps, who was running against Bart Blair for the council's At-large Seat B post, told the Standard-Examiner he missed Wednesday's 5 p.m. filing deadline at the city recorder's office by 40 minutes.
Phipps, in an e-mail to the Standard-Examiner, congratulated Blair who has effectively secured the council seat.
"Ogden politics is an interesting thing. People are constantly trying to pressure new candidates to one side or the other, and the lines continue to be drawn", Phipps said. "I was excited to show Ogden residents that I was willing to stand up to both sides when I felt they were wrong. I desperately hope that Mr. Blair won't just follow the anti-everything administration camp, but that citizens from both sides will have a voice. I congratulate him on a well- run campaign and I support him in any efforts to bring unity back to Ogden. I love this city and will continue to help in its economic growth downtown so all of us can enjoy our downtown again."
J Neil

The Third Set Of Emerald City Council Candidate Financial Disclosure Reports Are Now On File

Seven out of eight of them, anyhow

Let us point out this timely 2009 Ogden municipal election story in this morning's Standard-Examiner, reporting on the third set of council candidate financial disclosure statements which were due for filing in the city recorder's office by 5:00 p.m. yesterday. According to Mr. Schwebke's story, all council candidates confidently met yesterday's extended 5:00 p.m. deadline; but we're not so sure of that. According to one of the deputy clerks with whom we spoke this morning, only seven of the necessary eight financial reports were on file as of 9:05 this morning; and one conspicuously failed to make the deadline. We don't know who the recalcitrant candidate is. We didn't ask... although we have heard unconfirmed rumors.

Adding insult to injury, of the seven candidate statements who did actually meet the filing deadline, only four are as yet displayed on the city website.

Undaunted, we'll move on. And in that connection we'll do what we intended to do when we first snatched up our SE hard-copy edition from our front porch early this morning, and pored over Mr. Schwebke's story. For those who've been following our WCF Council Candidate Roster pages, btw, here are the latest updates:
2009 Ogden City Municipal Election Cumulative Financial Disclosure Reports
We've also added these latest reports to the individual candidate pages, which are nested within our Weber County Candidate Roster.

There you have it folks; short and sweet. We'll of course continue to update these pages as additional reports come online. Although we're not happy to release data that's still half-baked, we're tired of sitting on our thumbs this morning, waiting for Boss Godfrey's IP people to do their jobs.

That's it for now folks.

Don't let the cat get your tongues.

KSL News: Hard Times for Utah

Government budgets much worse than anticipated

By Danny

It looks like times will be getting a lot harder in Utah:
Government budgets worse than anticipated
From the article:

Sales and use taxes, which fund general government and higher education, slumped 23 percent, nearly $100 million.

Income taxes, which pay for public schools, slid downward $40 million.

Taxes on corporations, the franchise tax, were in free fall, plummeting 73 percent.

Bob Springmeyer, President of Bonneville Research said, "That's one that I think is probably the most scary. That means that businesses are way down, that means employment is going to be down."

More from Springmeyer: "I think we're going to have a budget bloodbath this next legislative session."

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Wednesday Afternoon Standard-Examiner Mailbag.

Additional material offered hopefully to pry our normally chatty WCF readers out of their evident drowsiness

Since reader comment traffic is a mite slow today, we thought it might be useful to feature a few of today's Standard-Examiner Letters to the Editor this afternoon, dealing with issues involving Tuesday's upcoming Emerald City municipal election. Now that we've set the stage for this, we'll highlight these "good ones." So here we go:

Ogden resident Jan Hamer gets it exactly right with this, wethinks:
Conflict between Ogden council, mayor fabricated
And Ogden City resident Cathy Gambles nails it, regarding what Godfrey's greed-head real estate developer ticket (Hains , Garner and Phipps) would do, if elected as a controlling majority on the Ogden City Council:
Vote for Ogden candidates who respect open space
And then there's this... This Council-member Dorrene Jeske reader letter which we neglected to highlight yesterday... mainly because our newly hired SE paper-boy evidently couldn't pry his ass out of bed to deliver yesterday's SE hard-copy edition to our front stoop:
Van Hooser, Blair merit support
That's it for now, gentle readers.

One way or the other, we do hope this provocative material will pry you out of today's apparent comments lethargy.

Wall Street Journal: Dude, Where's My Car?

Flaws in the "new urbanism" model?

By Curmudgeon

Interesting and possibly important: Today's Wall Street Journal has an interesting story here about empty-nesters returning to inner cities to live carless lives in urban condos. What caught my eye was this paragraph:
Demographers and economists have predicted that many aging baby boomers would opt for smaller, easier-to-manage dwellings once their children left home. Those predictions helped spur a surge in loft and condominium developments in many U.S. cities, as well as efforts to develop so-called walkable communities.

So far, the bet hasn't paid off. "The developers that anticipated a big increase in condominium living in center cities are sorely disappointed," says Gary Engelhardt, a professor at Syracuse University who's studied the influence of boomers on the housing market. The housing bust has led many people who might have sold their suburban homes to stay put. But even when the market recovers, Mr. Engelhardt says, "I don't foresee a massive movement back in center cities for older individuals."
The reason it caught my eye is that the master plan for re-developing downtown Ogden, and in particular for The Junction, rested largely on anticipating precisely the "walkable downtown condo living" model that the article says has not materialized nationwide as expected.

[And before the Godfreyista Gaggle begins denouncing me for naysaying, let me add that I was encouraged by the "new urbanism" trend that seemed to be underway, and that I am sorely disappointed that the condo plans for The Junction have pretty much collapsed, since so much of the Junction's business plan depended upon their being a certain population of relatively upscale condo-dwellers living there. The empty-nester downtown living idea I and Mrs. Curmudgeon found kind of appealing and are considering it for our next --- and last ever --- move. As an environmentalist, I like the idea as well of reducing driving around that living in a downtown condo with necessary shopping nearby (food, pharmacies, bookstore) in a walkable city with good public transit. But my liking the idea doesn't matter much if the trend doesn't develop and doesn't turn out to be an economically viable one for cities to encourage.]

Again, since so much of the downtown Ogden and Junction development model is based on the "new urbanism" model, I thought the article worth pointing out.

Standard-Examiner: FBI says Ogden Crime Stats Down -- UPDATED

Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics

Regular as clock work, and on the eve of a pivotal Ogden City municipal election, wherein control of the majority of Ogden City Council seats is up for grabs, the Standard-Examiner comes through with another Godfrey administration tout piece, announcing once again that Boss Godfrey has his hands firmly placed on all the right levers and dials, making Ogden City one of the most crime-free towns in the Beehive State. Most of this stuff comes straight out of the mouth of Boss Godfrey of course, so as all WCF readers know, it has to be all true:
FBI says Ogden crime stats down
Godfrey of course denies that the timing of this story has anything at all to do with Tuesday's election, since he's not personally running for re-election this time around. We'll assume of course that his lips were moving when he uttered this denial, and will thus draw all reasonable inferences therefrom.

Just to kick-start the morning discussion, we'll shamelessly incorporate Dan S.' most cogent comment from the above SE story's comment section, rather than spend another hour or two trying to piece together our own infallible analysis:
We should pay heed to Mark Twain and the many others who have pointed out the deceptive use of statistics. A year ago I carefully analyzed Ogden's crime statistics and reported the results here:

Ogden Crime Statistics... Without the Godfrey Distortions

There are just too many ways to present the data. Which categories of crimes do you include? Do you weight all crimes equally or does a murder count more than a simple assault? Do you report total crimes, or crimes per person? If the latter, what population data do you use? How far back in time do you go when reporting long-term trends?
In recent years, the Standard-Examiner has left all of these decisions to the politicians.
Getting a quote from a skeptical expert is better than nothing, but a true journalist would do an independent analysis of the data (or hire an independent expert to do such an analysis).
The Standard-Examiner doesn't even seem to notice when the statistics in one article contradict the statistics in an earlier article. In July 2008 the S-E published a similar crime-trend graph with different numbers: 72 (not 77) in 2000, and 77 (not 67) in 2006, for instance. (I think the discrepancy for 2000 is from using different population data, while the discrepancy for 2006 is because the city reported a higher number of crimes and later revised the number downward.) Here's a link to the earlier graph:

More Pro-Godfrey Spin from the Standard-Examiner

During his 2007 campaign, Godfrey claimed that Ogden's crime rate had dropped 23% between 1999 and 2006. The graph in this article shows a 16% drop between those years, while the July 2008 graph shows only a 4% drop. Godfrey also claimed there had been a 43% drop in the sub-category of violent crimes over the same time period, but the officially available statistics show little or no change in the violent crime rate.
According to the FBI web site, "the FBI discourages data users from ranking agencies [e.g., cities] and using the data as a measure of law enforcement effectiveness."

Uniform Crime Reports
A Word About UCR Data
(Readers who are seriously interested in the topic of Ogden crime statistics from a historic perspective also ought to take a gander at these articles too.)

So what about it gentle readers? Has Boss Godfrey at last embraced his primary and fundamental mayoral role as a zealot for public safety? Is Godfrey the Crime Fighter truly taking a bite out of crime? Or is it the same old story all over again, with Godfrey once again fiddling with the numbers?

Have at it, O Gentle Ones.

Update 10/28/09 10:02 a.m.: Godfrey's Mormon friends at KSL News are covering this story too, and savvy KSL viewers are all taking Godfrey's "eminations" with a grain of salt... shall we say?

Too funny.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Rep. Hansen Apologizes to Phipps

Let's not over-focus on the technicalities surrounding Mr. Phipps's residency

Fascinating story in this morning's Standard-Examiner, wherein Scott Schwebke reports that House District 9 Representative Neil Hansen has graciously issued an unsolicited apology to Ogden City Council Seat "B" Candidate David Phipps, for his perceived overreaction to information he received from the Salt Lake County Elections Office on or about October 14. This information of course launched a Weber County Forum article on the subject the following day, and provoked a most robust discussion in our lower comments section. Read this morning's full Scott Schwebke story here:
Ogden lawmaker apologizes for accusations about candidate
We applaud Representative Hansen for taking the ethical high road on this, and for recognising and correcting his own mistake. While we believe Rep. Hansen's action in obtaining and releasing the information that Mr. Phipps had voted in his old Sugarhouse precinct in 2008, (even while claiming simultaneous residency in Ogden) was entirely proper, we also agree that Rep. Hansen is right, and that he may have at least slightly overstepped the bounds of political civility in offering this quote in Mr. Schwebke's Oct 19 2009 Standard-Examiner story:
"There is some dishonesty about his residency and there needs to be some accountability," Hansen said, adding he obtained the records on behalf of a constituent whom he declined to identify."
And just to set the record straight, it's the above statement which Rep. Hansen appears to be apologizing about... and we believe that's the only statement he needs to apologize about.

Rep. Hansen has plenty of political juice in Ogden, and we congratulate him for recognizing that drawing ultimate conclusions about Mr. Phipps's honesty or lack thereof is not his proper role, and that the opinion of a politically-influential state legislator, if left un-retracted, could carry undue weight. The role of determining ultimate legal culpability is reserved for the proper legal authorities of course, as Rep. Hansen remarks in today's SE story:
Hansen said in a phone interview Monday it isn't his place to judge whether Phipps is an eligible candidate and hopes an investigation will be launched promptly to sort out his residency.
"That's between him and the legal system," he said.Hansen said one issue that needs to be sorted out is if Phipps, as he claims, was a resident of Ogden at the time of the 2008 election, was it legal for him to vote in Salt Lake City?Conversely, Hansen said, if Phipps was a legal resident of Salt Lake City, did he meet residency requirements to file for city council?.
What Rep. Hansen neglects to mention however is the court of public opinion, another legitimate venue to weigh conflicting claims on the eve of a municipal election. While we congratulate Rep. Hansen for his magnanimous gesture in apologising to Mr. Phipps for comments which were arguably excessive, we also doubt that Rep. Hansen would criticise Ogden voters for themselves weighing the facts which Rep. Hansen initially laid out.

And in that connection we do believe questions regarding Mr. Phipps's residency are crying out to be resolved. And we do believe the circumstances surrounding Mr. Phipps's November 4, 2008 Salt Lake County vote reflect on Mr. Phipps's character and fitness for office. The citizens of Ogden are certainly entitled to weigh the facts on their own, without resorting to the the opinions of any State Legislator, although we'd also view it as advisable to avoid drawing any firm conclusions until all the evidence is in.

Having said that, we'll issue a caveat: Let's not go overboard on this. The issues regarding Mr. Phipps's residency will ultimately be resolved. As Mr. Schwebke reports in this morning's story, third-place seat "B" candidate Jennifer Neil has already filed a complaint in this matter; and during the course of the proceedings which will result from this procedural step, we recommend that we all stand back... and let the wheels of justice grind on. The residency issues will all get sorted out, one way or the other, we believe.

And in the same connection we'll refer to a Dan Schroeder comment lodged under the above-linked Oct 19 2009 SE story. Remember, there are plenty of other troubling issues surrounding Mr. Phipps's candidacy:

For the time being at least,
let's not over-focus on the technicalities surrounding Mr. Phipps's residency.

There are plenty of other fish to fry, no?

Monday, October 26, 2009

Monday Morning Standard-Examiner Mailbag

Spotlight on two thoughtful and timely SE reader submissions

To kick off this morning's discussion, we'll highlight a couple of this morning's hard-copy edition letters to the Standard-Examiner which are particularly timely today, as we stand poised on the brink of our 2009 Emerald City Municipal Election, which looms a little more than seven days hence.

First, SE reader Dennis J. Hogge thoughtfully adopts a theme from Doris Kearns Goodwin's Abraham Lincoln biography, "Team of Rivals; The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln," i.e., that "an administration that lacks diversity of opinion may not be the most productive or safest," and then offers this savvy observation:
In my opinion, a system of checks and balances should be encouraged, not stifled. The members of the city council should challenge and question the administration on controversial issues. Only then can an equitable consensus be reached. The process requires that the mayor demonstrate leadership, not domination.
Next, SE reader Catherine Gerwels reminds Ogden voters of Boss Godfrey's not-so-hidden agenda, i.e., breaking his 2007 election promise, and instead bulldozing Ogden's upper east bench. Here's Ms. Gerwels "money quote":
Upon learning the content of the [mayor's golf course] committee's report, I feel almost 100 percent secure in saying that given the opportunity, Mayor Godfrey will break his pre-election promises regarding Mount Ogden Park. That chance will present itself if the city council becomes stacked with rubber-stamp members whose real goal is to use our park land to line the pocket books of their supporters at the expense of the long-term future of Ogden city and the overwhelming majority of its citizens. A city without parkland is not a desirable place to live and certainly not one that can boast about its outdoor recreation and lifestyle.
Four years after Boss Godfrey's 2003-05 "Gang of Six" rubber stamp council was unceremoniously ushered out of office by Ogden voters in 2005, Ogden City taxpayers are still suffering the painful economic after-effects. Is it possible, gentle readers, that a now seemingly apathetic Ogden City electorate could allow another Godfrey rubber stamp council to be voted into office again?

Several more powerful arguments, we believe, to to show up in force at the polls on November 3, (torches and pitchforks in hand) and vote for independent thinkers like Bart Blair, Jesse Garcia and Susan Van Hooser.

And what say our readers about all this?

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Deseret News: Ethics Debate Heating Up Online

UEG petitions await your signatures at two centrally-situated Ogden locations

Interesting and informative Deseret News article this morning, reporting on the latest developments regarding the Utahns for Ethical Government (UEG) citizen legislative ethics initiative petition drive, which we've been hawking here on Weber County Forum for the past few months. Bob Bernick Jr.'s lead paragraphs provide the gist:
Want to know more about the citizen legislative ethics initiative?Utahns for Ethical Government — the initiative sponsors — and legislators who oppose the measure are sparring through online conversations, allegations and responses.
You can read the 25-page petition online at
At that site you can also read a response from UEG over what it calls "misinformation" that has been "taken out of context" from the petition itself and from seven public hearings held around the state to get residents' input.
Meanwhile, at least two legislators — Sen. Lyle Hillyard, R-Logan, and Rep. Lorie Fowlke, R-Orem, both attorneys — have written their own legal analysis of the initiative, pointing out what they say are numerous unconstitutional, illegal or otherwise problematic elements in the proposed new law.
This morning's story provides links to two initiative opposition memos, one of which links doesn't work. For the benefit of our gentle readers, here are functioning links to the Hillyard document, and the Fowlkes document respectively. We're sure that those of you with a taste for obtuse legal jargon and chain of of consciousness rambling will find these papers to be much to your liking.

For those of you however who like it short and to the point, we encourage you to read the UEG's 25 issue point and counterpoint brief, as it appears on the UEG webpage page linked above, and which we'll present to our WCF readers in easily-digestible pdf (and printer-ready) form. We believe this document handily covers all the major points.

What's obvious is that initiative opponents are attempting to obfuscate and confuse the issues. As you'll discover from a reading of the above-linked pdf document, it really ain't so complicated as the initiative opponents would lead you to believe.

And for those Emerald City/Weber County residents who've been anxiously waiting to put your signatures on an actual UEG petition, we're delighted to this find further pertinent information. According to information which we've gleaned from the UEG website, petitions await your signatures at the two following centrally-situated Ogden locations:
Joyce Wilson (Weber County)
979 27th
Ogden, UT

Ogden-Weber UniServ (Weber County)
939 25th St
Ogden, UT 84401
What are we waiting for, WCF readers?

Let's all put our ethically-challenged legislature's feet to the fire, and make plans to sign the petition this week.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

WSU Wildcats Game Day Thread

Lots of pivotal Northern Utah football games to watch today

Order your Delivered Pizza right now. Today's Northern Utah college gridiron action should be most interesting.

OK first here's this one, where The Zoobies face off against the TCU Mountain West Conference "so far best" powerhouse.

Then we have this one, where the Utah Utes go back to last year's moth-eaten gameplan, and try to deal with the Air Force Academy's "goofy" option offense.

But last but not least, here's the Northern Utah real college game of the day, at least in our estimation.
Wildcats wary of improving N. Colorado.
As per usual, we'll once again set up a dedicated thread, where whereby we WCU Wildcats fans can comment during today's game, which will be broadcast on the Alt net TEEVEE network around 130 p.m., also with a live audio broadcast from KLO radio.

Have at it, Wildcats fans!

Update 10/24/09 7:00 p.m.: Final: WSU 28 NC 20. Here's the first available wire service (AP) story:
Weber State holds off Northern Colorado 28-20

Ogden Council Hires its Own Legislative Lobbyist At A Definite Bargain Rate

Boss Godfrey's own "sneaky" actions bring on the inevitable consequences

Encouraging Scott Schwebke story in this morning's Standard-Examiner, reporting that our Emerald City Council has now followed up on its earlier-reported course of action and hired its own legislative lobbyist:
Ogden hires lobbyist for $10,000
This morning's story also provides a fairly remarkable quote from Ogden City CAO John "Pureheart" Patterson, who swears (cross his heart) that he has no idea at all why the council has found it necessary to employ its own lobbyist:
John Patterson, the city’s chief administrative officer, questioned the council’s need to hire Peterson.
“At this point in time, given the friction between the city council and administration, it feels like they have to have a lobbyist to keep an eye on our lobbyist,” he said. “It’s unfortunate. Hopefully, we will get on a better track.”
Quick reminer to Mr. Patterson, who apparently lives in a world of alternate reality all his own ... It was Godfrey's own sneaky actions which brought on this inevitable consequence.

For our own part of course, we've long believed that the Mayor's administration could use a competent "tough love" babysitter, not only within Emperor Godfrey's ninth floor throne room, but also up on Utah's Capitol Hill.

A Weber County Forum Tip O' the Hat this morning to our Ogden City Council grownups, for taking the necessary action to ride herd on the devious and ethically-challenged Mr. Jolley and Mr. Johnson.

Remember, folks, it's Boss Godfrey and his lackeys who've been doing the recent whining about a "lack of Administration/Council communication."

And yes... on the strength of Mr. Patterson's above quote, we're filing this story under the label "Alternate Reality Department."

Friday, October 23, 2009

Friday Funnies: 2009 Emerald City Municipal Election Update

The latest tactic in the 2009 "Lawn Sign Wars"

On or about September 29, the Standard-Examiner published the following Don Carver letter, making note of the proliferation of ghastly Council Seat "B" Candidate David Phipps signs scattered all across Ogden City, on the scores of residential properties owned and/or managed by corporate landlords like Provident Partners Commercial Real Estate:
Phipps buys election influence
Mr. Carver launched into a quite savvy discussion of the ethical and legal nuances concerning the placement by property management companies of political lawn signs upon the leaseholds of innocent lessees who may or may not support any particular Ogden City council candidate. He then came through with a sensible tactic for politically-involved renters to combat the overreaching of Ogden's greed-driven real estate property management faction:
I would like to call on local residents who've had Phipps' signs foisted on them to contact Blair's people and get a sign supporting him. Post the sign next to the original to clarify who you support. The people of Ogden must speak out for themselves. Do not let a few people interested in buying up our land have the only say.
Thanks to a morning tip from one of our alert readers, it would appear that at least one politically-oppressed Ogden City renter has taken taken up Mr. Carver on his suggestion, adopted Mr. Carver's tactic and decided to fight back (click to enlarge image):

A Weber County Forum Tip O' The Hat to a Gentle Reader and an Ogden renter whose true identities will go undisclosed. Hopefully many other aggrieved Ogden City renters will follow suit.

As our submitting reader remarked, "Phipps may be the only Ogden renter casting a ballot for David Phipps on election day."

Pretty funny, ainnit?

Power to the people, right on!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Spotlight on This Morning's Special Standard-Examiner 2009 Election Feature

Nine new Standard-Examiner items begging for your attention... do your duty, folks

The Standard-Examiner is evidently trying to get its act together in advance of the November 3 election, with a special WeberPlus Section feature which appeared in this morning's edition, under the title, "Determining Ogden's leaders." Much of the material is a rehash of earlier-reported matter, but in the interest of helping keep our readers informed of all the 2009 municipal election stories on the web, we'll highlight the four writeups which appeared in this morning's SE hard-copy edition:
Ogden City Council At-Large Seat A
Ogden City Council At-Large Seat B
Ogden City Council Ward 1
Ogden City Council Ward 3
We encourage our readers to follow these links over to the SE site of course, to lodge your ever-savvy comments.

And here's something of additional interest. The Standard appears to be midway through the process of assembling expanded candidate statements which go beyond the depth of the candidate questionnaire responses which the SE published way back on September 10. We're just speculating on this, but perhaps these pages are the fruit of the still SE editors' ongoing council candidate interview process.

So far the SE has published these expanded statement pages for Patrick Dean, Doug Stephens, Bart Blair, Mark Haines and Susan Van Hooser. We'll be sure to let you know when they've published the rest. We'll be adding these article to our WCF candidate roster pages too, of course

We take great pride in providing all the relevant 2009 election information here on Weber County Forum. Hopefully however we're not driving you all into information overload mode.

And don't forget, these last five pages have comments sections too.

Do your duty, O Gentle Ones.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Jon Greiner Gets His "Day in Court"

Scott Schwebke reports on Jon Greiner's now-ongoing Hatch Act administrative hearing

The Standard-Examiner describes the latest episode in the long-simmering Jon Greiner Hatch Act Saga,with this morning's Scott Schwebke story, which reports that our Ogden Police Chief/State Senator is now mired in the midst of a multi-day administrative hearing, wherein it will ultimately be determined whether Ogden City's carefully-crafted Hatch Act Compliance Program, (whereby Chief Greiner has been formally insulated from duties and authority related to federal grants) is sufficient to remove the matter from Hatch Act jurisdiction:
Hatch Act hearing puts senator/Ogden police chief's future on the line
Curiously, and despite the Godfrey administration's otherwise scrupulous efforts to distance Chief Greiner from any official acts related to application, management or disposition of federal grant funds, Mr. Schwebke's morning story reveals that the administration may have nevertheless clownishly dropped the ball, by allowing Chief Greiner to affix his signature and/or initials to a number of grant applications and/or other grant-related documents. This slip-up of course thus provides the federal Office of Special Counsel a seemingly significant angle of attack -- a circumstance which could have been easily avoided. In that connection, it seems to us that it it would have made better sense for the administration to have required Ogden CAO John Patterson or Assistant Chief Tarwater to have signed off on these documents. Why they committed this particular bone-headed blunder we'll never know, although we will snarkily suggest that it does seem consistent with the general level of incompetence we've come to expect from "Boss Godfrey's Gang that Can't Shoot Straight."

We're posting this article mainly for archival consistency, inasmuch as we don't reasonably anticipate any real news about the outcome of this week's hearings for at least a few more months.

Nevertheless, we'll open the floor for any appropriate reader comments.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Emerald City Tuesday News Roundup

A reminder that early voting starts today; and a report that Boss Godfrey's "Council Nanny Plan" has fizzled out

There are a couple items in this morning's Standard-Examiner which we believe to be worthy of note.

First, Bryon Saxton provides a helpful reminder that early voting for the November 3 general election begins today. Although this morning's story reports that some northern Utah cities will have abbreviated voting hours, that's not the case in Ogden City. We spoke with the Ogden City Recorder's Office this morning and confirmed that our readers can visit that office at the City Municipal building to cast their early ballots any time between 8:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Mondays through Fridays, during the period running from this morning through October 30.

With the publication of this morning's story, we also believe it's a fine time to again remind our readers of our Weber County Forum Council Candidate Roster, wherein our readers can find a full collection of articles and links regarding the eight council candidates. If you haven't visited these pages even within the last week, you'll find that they're seriously fleshed out since your last visit. Be sure to click the links for the individual candidate pages, where we've assembled what we believe to be the single most information-rich Ogden City council candidate data source on the web. There's no need, we believe, for early general election voters to enter the voting booth unarmed.

Next, we'll put the spotlight on this morning's Standard-Examiner story, wherein Mr. Schwebke reports that Boss Godfrey's October 21, 2008 effort to appoint a City Council Nanny has fizzled out. When we last discussed this topic on Weber County Forum, a number of our readers expressed their doubts about the viability of this plan. Unfortunately, due to serious health issues within Dr. Goff's family, we'll never know whether the appointment of a dedicated council liason would have had a snowball's chance in hell of paving the way for improved Administration/Council relations. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Dr. Goff and his family, of course.

We do have a fallback plan however. Howbout the council re-appropriate the 500 bucks previously designated for Dr. Goff's monthly stipend, and redirect it for the enrollment of Boss Godfrey in a reasonably closely located charm school instead? We do believe this is the area where the lumpentaxpayers could get the most bang for the buck, and that dedicated charm school tuition for the socially-incompetent Boss Godfrey would be taxpayer money very well spent.

That's it for now, gentle readers.

Don't let the cat get your tongues.

Update 10/20/09 12:10 p.m.: Upon the most excellent suggestion of the ever-cerebral gentle reader Keisha, we've set up a poll, to allow our readers to rate the "best of the best of the best" of the 2009 general election council candidate websites. First, go to our award-worthy Council Candidate Roster, click on the individual candidate page links and check out what the candidates offer online. After that, enter your vote in the poll module we've just now placed in the right sidebar.

Let it never be said that Weber County Forum readers can't find creative ways to amuse themselves... even on an otherwise S-L-O-O-O-W news day.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Standard-Examiner: Outlet Stores in Downtown Ogden?

The real puzzle is why the SE permits itself to be played like a violin

By Curmudgeon

This morning's Standard-Examiner has another painful example of Ogden's home town paper's inability to distinguish between news and campaign-driven speculations by Ogden Mayor Matthew Godfrey:
Outlet stores in downtown Ogden? Mayor says deal could be announced in November
From the story:
The city expects to announce an agreement next month with one or more companies to establish retail outlet operations in three vacant buildings on the east side of Washington Boulevard, says Mayor Matthew Godfrey. Godfrey declined to identify the companies the city is negotiating with.... A terraced parking structure could eventually be built behind the outlet operation depending on customer demand, said Godfrey, who hopes other retail businesses will also open along the east side of Washington Boulevard.
And he expects to make the announcement in November. Isn't there an election coming in November? Why, it seems there is! Imagine that.

Could it be the purpose of announcing the Mayor's intention to announce, probably after the election, that three un-named companies, or maybe one, may sign leases to locate on Washington is to boost the election chances of the Mayor's candidates for Council seats? Is it possible that didn't occur to the SE's editors?

Since Hizzonah has so often announced things were going to happen that never did, it's hard to figure why he'd not wait until he had leases in hand from companies he could name before going public --- unless the goal all along was to influence the election if he could in favor of his pet Council candidates.

The real puzzle is why the SE permits itself to be played like a violin by the Administration over and over and over again.

Back in the days when the SE had a newsroom instead of a Content Center and editors who made it a point of pride not to permit themselves to be played by politicos, here's what would have happened with Hizzonah's latest press release reached the SE newsroom. The News Editor would have called Mr. Schwebke over and said:
"Scott, call the Mayor's office and tell them if they won't name the companies they say they're close to signing, so we can check the story out, we're not going with this. Without the names, this is not news we can verify, and we're not running it two weeks before the Council election. Tell him when he can give us a date certain on which a company he can name is going to sign a lease, to call us back and we'll print it. That the Mayor hopes business on Washington will pick up isn't news. We're not that desperate for copy. I'll print a lost dog story first."
Sadly, that's not what happened.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Bits and Pieces of 2009 Municipal Election Information on an Otherwise Slow News Sunday Morning

A pitch for campaign donations for one our favored council candidates; and a spotlight on the heretofore seeming Ward 3 council candidate "invisible man"

Red meat news has again slowed to a crawl this weekend, so we thought it might be appropriate this morning to devote some space to a couple of bits and pieces of new municipal election 2009 information:

1) For those who are unaware, Council "A" Seat candidate Susan Van Hooser is in the midst of a grassroots campaign contribution drive, whereby she's attempting to raise a modest $800 in donations, through the PayPal donation button on her website. From Ms. Van Hooser's Facebook page we receive this 10/16/09 project update:
Thank you for all of your support. We've received $150 in the last 48 hours in just online donations. We're well on our way to our goal of $800. This is just half of the $1,500 my opponent has received from The Northern Wasatch Association of Realtors, a special interest group wanting to get supporters in the council to do work for Ogden's Real Estate and not Ogden's Citizens. Our grassroots campaign is going strong and would thrive greatly with your support. There's no contribution too small, if you could spare $10 that would be greatly appreciated. Please visit my website for more info.
If you haven't yet coughed up at least a few shekels to help out with Susie's campaign, why not amble over to her campaign website, click the donation button and make a contribution right now?

2) We've received several emails from WCF readers, expressing appreciation for our Ogden City 2009 General Election Voting Guide, which we posted on Friday. In that connection, some of you said you got some extra chuckles from this segment, "focusing" on Ward 3 Candidate Pat Dean:
Patrick “Invisible Man” Dean

I’ve never met this guy. I’ve never seen him, and I don’t know anybody who can describe anything about him. The people who finance me apparently found him someplace, and got him to run by telling him the job pays several hundred dollars a month. They assure me he’ll do what I tell him to do. This is exactly the kind of visionary, forward-looking candidate we need more of in Ogden.
Fun is fun, gentle readers; but we want to give the man a completely fair shake. So being the curious type, we accordingly contacted Patrick Dean by telephone, and requested that he send us some info -- something to let our readers know what he and his campaign are all about. Mr. Dean cordially agreed to do so; and here's the information he promptly sent:
Patrick Dean - A Few Words About Myself.....,
In speaking with Mr. Dean, we were also delighted to learn that he has a fairly information-rich (although still "under construction") campaign website:
Vote Pat Dean
As we know, there are numerous readers among us who are not completely satisfied with Councilman Doug Stephens' somewhat unpredictable council performance; and even one or two readers (or more) have come out and suggested they like Mr. Dean as their preferred candidate. We're thus shining a little brighter spotlight on the other Ward 3 alternative.

Our inclusion of this information should be in no way interpreted as a Weber County Forum endorsement of Mr. Dean's candidacy (not at this point, at least); but we thought it might be useful for our readers to know he's not really quite "the invisible man" he's heretofore appeared to be.

That's it for now, gentle readers.

Have at it; and let the ever curious world-wide blogosphere know what our ever-savvy WCF readers think. We know you're out there; we can hear you breathing.

Alternatively, feel free to consider this an open topic thread.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

WSU Homecoming: WSU v. SSU Game Day Thread

The University from Governornator "Arnold's" capitol city of Cal-E-Fornia shows up at Stewart Stadium to get their "Ass Kicked" today

Regular as clockwork, the calender has rolled on by one week since our last WSU Game Day article; and we're thus delighted to open up another article and discussion thread in that vein. Here's the pregame setup from this morning's Standard-Examiner:
Mighty motivation
Weber State University will be playing Sacramento State at home in Stewart Stadium this very afternoon. Kickoff is @ 1:30 p.m., to be exact. We can always hope, with a homecoming game going on, that otherwise distracted, but actual WSU students who are turned on by the "Homecoming Atmosphere" will rally up, to put themselves and their fannies and into stadium seats, and actually pack the stadium for at least a couple of quarters.

Once again we'll provide the internet links, for those local WSU fans who can't (for possibly implausible and logicly inexcuseable reasons) make it in person for this afternoon's game:

Check out the internet video version on Big Sky TEEVEE. Check it out. It really is very good.

For those who might be satisfied with classic radio audio, WSU Flagship KLO Radio is the ever-reliable "go-to place," of course.

We''l leave this article up for today's game comments. Don't hesitate to throw in your own two cents.

Final Score: WSU Wildcats 49; Sac State Hornets 10 = Homecoming Blowout.

Update 10/18/09 9:00 a.m. MT: Check out this morning's Std-Ex post-game writeups:
Homecoming Bliss - Jason Asay
Halftime momentum pays off - Jason Asay
I's Toone time at Weber St. - Jim Burton
And here's the post-game story from the perspective of the Hornets' home town newspaper, the Sacramento Bee:
Hornets' winning streak is history
Great to see our Wildcats hitting on all cylinders, no?

Friday, October 16, 2009

Ogden City 2009 General Election Voting Guide

Special Guest Commentary from Mayor Godfrey (Parody)

You’ve probably heard about how abusive I am toward the women on the city council. Some people think I’ve gotten even more crabby than ever since all my projects are going to pot. But in reality, my administration has always taken a consistent approach toward women. Take my Business Development manager, Scott Brown, who had to resign because of sexual harassment charges and computer porn, or my current Chief Administrative Officer, John Patterson, who had to quit his last job because of having an affair with one of his subordinates.

You see, when these city council women sometimes won’t meet with me when I command them to, it reminds me of the way women have treated me all my life – they ignore me. Most women don’t know their place and how they should serve a man. When the members of my administration have affairs, abuse women or look at computer porn, they are just tying to help themselves to see women in their proper role.

Take my problem with council chairman Amy Wicks. She’s a woman, but she acts like a man, by having her own opinions on things. One day I started to give her a piece of my mind, and one of my people took this picture. You can see in my eyes that I don’t like women to ignore me.

To drive home the point, I called my people at the newspaper and told them to hit the women on the council, which they did. The newspaper not only told the women to let me beat them up as much as I want, they even called on Amy Wicks to resign. Click here to read their brilliant editorial. Who’s the boss now, Amy?

But I didn’t want to take all day talking about the proper role of women. I wanted to talk about who you should vote for in the upcoming election on November 3, to implement my vision.

At Large Seat A

Mark “Stinky” Haines

You probably remember my new committee that I talked about in the primary: the “Supreme Committee of Real Estate Workers – United.” Hains is in charge of this committee now since my other candidate lost out in the primary.

Now somebody told me if you take the capital letters of my committee, it spells out something not very nice. Well, I’m not changing the name because I’ve never admitted to making a mistake in my life, and I’m not going to start now.

Haines is a real estate agent. He gets his nickname “Stinky” from the expression that he gets on his face whenever he sees or smells open space. Stinky Haines is getting a little on in years and so he doesn’t like to walk too far when he’s selling homes – condos are much better for him. So he’s running for city council to help me put condos all over the East Bench.

Look, Haines is a real estate agent, with real estate money bankrolling him. Haines understands that the East Bench needs to be bulldozed. Why else would he be running and raking in all that real estate and contractor campaign cash? But he’s not going to come out and say it because the naysayers will complain. You can figure that out for yourself, can’t you, Sherlock?

Susan Van Hooser

This is the woman who ran against me in my last election for mayor. My lawyers intimidated the county elections director (another woman) into throwing out enough ballots to barely make me the winner. It’s seems easier for me nowadays to intimidate some women into doing what I want. If only I could take that ability and go back in time to High School.

Anyway, VanHooser has tons of useless public service, and she’s been on the city council. She listens to people, studies issues, and thinks before voting. And she is courageous. In other words, she’s another woman who has her own mind and is no good for anything. Do you really want me to have to deal with another independent minded woman?

At Large Seat B

David “Alfred E” Phipps

I still think the campaign portrait I had done for Phipps is a near perfect likeness.

Phipps’ campaign got off to a slow start. First, he put the wrong seat he was running for on his signs. Then he sent out a flyer saying people were supporting him who actually weren’t. Then he apologized. Then he did it all over again.

Then to top it off, this screwball let everyone know that he just moved to Ogden from Sugarhouse during the last year, and doesn’t even own a home in Ogden – he rents. (The dummy posted it on his blog! Then when people started noticing, he took it down. But the darned naysayers still have it available to read here.) And he tells people he has a business in Ogden, but he’s really just a real estate agent in Layton. And to add the frosting to the cake, he admitted in the Standard-Examiner via this very morning's Scott Schwebke story that he committed voter fraud in Salt Lake County on November 4, 2008! With this kind of sloppy work and calm, casual falsification, you can see why I love this guy!

On the bright side, when people ask why he knows nothing about Ogden, he can claim it’s because he just moved here. That way, people may overlook the fact that he actually doesn’t have the lights on upstairs either.

But he doesn’t have to be the brightest bulb in the box to take my cronies’ campaign cash and buy a council seat for himself. Phipps just has to keep going around saying he’s independent while he keeps taking the money my cronies give him. In the end, my supporters know Phipps will do what he’s told. Enough said.

Bart Blair

Bart Blair’s family business has been in Ogden for over 50 years – Blair’s Service. Those who are familiar with it know it is a clean place that does an honest business in good times and bad. People trust him and come back again and again.

In other words, he’s a dinosaur who is out of touch with my new approach to business. Blair refuses to get with my “Godfrey School Business Model,” which involves me selling off public land to my cronies on the cheap while they write me campaign checks.

In the 10 years I’ve been in office, this guy has taken none of my graft and has not given me a single kickback. Do you really want him to apply his work ethic and real-world business sense to Ogden City?

Municipal Ward 1

Neil “Doughboy” Garner

Garner looks like the Pillsbury Doughboy. At least I guess he does. I’ve never met him.

I said I needed somebody to get rid of Garcia, and they got this guy. My people have given him so much money he ought to be able to get elected to anything. With all that money I’ve fronted him, I guess he really is the “dough” boy. So I’m right as usual. I’m a genius even when I’m not trying.

Jesse Garcia

Garcia gets in my way. I tried to kill Union Station and he stopped me. I tried to close the Marshall White Center, and he blocked it. He lives in a district full of lower and middle income people. So why do they need any public facilities – they’re poor, right? I thought those people were supposed to entertain themselves by dancing or something. I need money for my failing projects downtown and since people in Garcia’s district rarely vote, I decided I can axe all the stuff in their neighborhoods and get the money I need. But Garcia keeps getting in my way. He’s my #1 target in this election.

Municipal Ward 3

Patrick “Invisible Man” Dean

I’ve never met this guy. I’ve never seen him, and I don’t know anybody who can describe anything about him. The people who finance me apparently found him someplace, and got him to run by telling him the job pays several hundred dollars a month. They assure me he’ll do what I tell him to do. This is exactly the kind of visionary, forward-looking candidate we need more of in Ogden.

Doug Stephens

Stephens is the incumbent. He votes with me sometimes, but I still have to talk him into things. And for some reason, he seems to like to hear other opinions as well. I’m tired of this guy and need somebody who is easier to work with.

In Summary

It’s easy to tell which ones are my candidates, because they are the ones being funded by the same people who bankroll my campaigns. My candidates were dug up by, and funded by, my back scratching real estate people and crony contractors who make their money from big government projects, from carving up raw land into condos, and from fomenting a lot of house turnover so they can collect their commissions. In other words, my candidates are those who will do what my bankrollers tell them to do – just as I do – for the good of Ogden.

So if you’re tired of council meetings, public hearings, public input, discussion, and a sense that there is more than one opinion in Ogden, this is your chance to do something about it. Vote for my candidates, and all discussion will end. If you’ve ever watched what happens when I get one of my people on the city council, you know they always, always do what I tell them to do.

On a final note, I wanted to show you the new place in my office I have for uppity women and people who disagree with me. Yeah, it’s right here:

In fact, for anybody who doesn’t agree with me, this is where they can go. Just put your hands together, and jump. So you see, I do have a place in my office for alternative opinions after all.

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