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It Must Be Something In The Water


For years, I’ve been suspicious that they must be putting tranquilizers in our drinking water.

How else can you explain the voters of Charlotte nodding off, election after election, while those entrusted to do the people’s business have been thumbing their noses at the public, lining their own pockets and pockets of their cronies, all the while strengthening their stranglehold on political power?

It’s laughable.

Just today: Our Mayor publicly whines that City Attorney Mac McCarley “sprung” the last-minute news on him that the mayor cannot vote on a pay raise for McCarley and City Manager Curt Walton. The Charlotte Observer, ever dutiful to uptown interests and the charade that masks their entrenched tentacles of power, reports Mayor Foxx’s supposed rage in a screaming page-one headline, “Ban on pay vote angers mayor.”

Foxx’s subsequent and indefensible refusal to exercise his veto is buried in the body of the story, complete with the Observer’s built-in excuse for Foxx’s inaction, stating that the veto is “an option mayors historically use only sporadically.” The implication from the Observer headline “news” story is that a veto from the mayor would’ve somehow been inappropriate. Seriously? A far more accurate headline would’ve been “Mayor refuses to veto pay raises.”

Yet the public continues to nap.

Even in this economy with our unsustainable public debt and an unemployment rate unprecedented in modern times, when we should be cutting taxes and bureaucratic bloat, Charlotte Center City Partners is so emboldened that they see no problem with lobbying for a million dollars in city funding for an uptown farmer’s market to be located in the now vacant Reid’s, a failed grocery store!

Yet the public responds with a collective yawn.

Our elected officials, from Mayor to City Council, and the public at large need to recognize and come to terms with the fact that the unelected, overpaid City Manager and the unelected Board of Charlotte Center City Partners are who actually run this city. They ALWAYS get exactly what they want, one way or another, “Public be damned.”

Until we de-fund Charlotte Center City Partners and make the City Manager truly accountable to our elected officials (who are then in turn accountable to the voters), the good-ol’ boy uptown crowd will continue their traditional, tone-deaf, systematic misallocation of our increasingly scarce community assets for their own benefit.

All this occurs with the direct help of traditional political cronies from big-government Democrats and self-serving, turncoat, yuppie Republicrats.

Yet the public snores.

Sadder yet, the exact same template applies to the vastly overpaid Mecklenburg County Manager Harry Jones and his compliant County Commission.

Look at the larger picture: Cityfair, DSS scandals, the mismanaged money pit called “light rail,” streetcars to nowhere, a NASCAR museum, the building of a publicly rejected arena, ridiculously expensive laughable giant earthen frisbees sold to us as public “art,” and the list goes on and on and on.

City leaders’ response? New bonds and even more public debt to burden our grandchildren.

Public response?  Zzzzz.

C’mon. Really. It must be something in the Charlotte and Mecklenburg County water supply. If not tranquilizers, what? Hallucinogens?


Special to Pundit House

©2010 Wayne Powers.  Used by permission.

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