Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Recall in the Real World

Sincerely, thank you Ms. Ross for bringing it on. Back at the time, I wrote:
Please bring it on. In some ways (and I am only speaking for myself, as always), I'm glad to see this happening. It amounts to calling the bluff of the chattering handful that have crowded out intelligent discussion at the Prime Buzz, and the joke blogger who will be working on the effort. After this is over, the city will get to see just how widespread and deep the opposition to Funk really is.
To her everlasting credit, Ms. Ross was forthright and honest in reporting the results - "the general consensus of the Kansas City populace was to give Mayor Funkhouser more time to fulfill his agenda for the city."

The joke blogger and his "internet mobs" never showed up. (Remember the awesome power of the internet and the electronic versions of the petition that were going to gathered at "collection points"?) The handful of hateful commenters on Prime Buzz turned out to be merely a handful of hateful commenters on Prime Buzz.

The bigger lesson here is that the local blogosphere is an echo chamber that does not reflect reality. According to the loudest and most numerous voices on the internet, this recall effort was a grassroots effort building to a tidal wave of public outrage, with only a couple absurd, ill-informed, out-of-touch kool-aid drinkers like me raising doubts. When the joke blogger wrote of being seen by the Mayor while carrying out boxes of recall petitions, he wrote that it "was a surreal moment but one that tells me that this recall effort is a lot more substantial than what has been depicted by the media." Somebody was in an altered state of surrealism at that encounter, and it wasn't the Mayor.

As Ms. Ross learned and reported, Kansas City wants Funkhouser to fulfill his agenda for the city. That's the real world. Let's look forward to more people working to support Funkhouser in fulfulling his agenda for the city.

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17 Comments:

Anonymous mainstream said...

I have to differ with you. The blogosphere wasn't anywhere near the way you characterized it. TKC is not the blogospshere, and even Funk's more vocal critics, myself obviously included, considered this recall a wasted, ill-timed effort.

The failure of this recall petition isn't anywhere near a victory for Funk or a statement on the efficacy of the blogospshere.

The petitions weren't tea leaves.

This is exactly what it was Dan:

a poorly conceived and poorly planned efforts whose failure was guarateed at the outset.

Nothing more or nothingless.

2/20/2008 8:00 AM  
Anonymous Back with the Funk said...

I remember those douchebags at the Blue Blog acting all gaga, and the Prime Buzz commenters crowing about this being the beginning of the end, and, of course, Tony pledging to work on the effort. To be fair, though, Mainstream did see right through these bozos and predict they would fail. Dan had predicted it before it even started, though, and he was right. Using the word "recall" in KC politics is simply a way of saying "Look at me, I'm stupid!"

But I think the effort proved more than you think it did, Mainstream. The people pushing the recall effort, Funk's sworn political enemies, came out and admitted that the general consensus of the Kansas City populace is to support Funk's agenda. That's pretty impressive, coming from them.

And you sure wouldn't get that impression by reading the baboons commenting on the internet. Dan's the only one who seems to have the pulse of Kansas City on this issue.

2/20/2008 10:34 AM  
Anonymous the nitwit said...

Wrong, Back and Dan. No one but you has suggested voters were saying people want to "support Funk's agenda." The recallers did say people want to give him more time, but that's far from the same thing as "support Funkhouser."

Only in the minds of the most rabid porchsitters would a reluctance to pull the trigger on a recall equate to strong support for Funk and Squitiro.

Of course amid Funk's constant failures, it's not surprising ya'll (or is it yael) would embrace this as a mandate.

2/20/2008 11:10 AM  
Anonymous Back with the Funk said...

Nitwit -

You seem horribly confused. Has anyone here claimed that this means support for Funk? No, not me, not Dan, and certainly not Mainstream.

Dan and I have read a little more carefully than you have. Ms. Ross said - this is a quotation -"the general consensus of the Kansas City populace was to give Mayor Funkhouser more time to fulfill his agenda for the city." Now, any rational person MUST accept that as support for Funk's agenda - nobody would want to give him time to fulfill it if they don't support it.

I know that your little hateful hopes and dreams were crushed by the general consensus, Nitwit, but you and Tony are going to have to find a new hobby . . .

2/20/2008 11:49 AM  
Anonymous mainstream said...

Most people don't follow, or are as opinionated or care about city government issues like we do.

To Nit's point, that's why I think it was what it was, and nothing more. A failed recall effort is not a mandate, and it does say something if that claim is made.

To 'Back's point, I will agree that some in the blogger community took the recall much further than it was merited.

2/20/2008 11:55 AM  
Anonymous the nitwit said...

Read more carefully, Back? Really?

Here's what you wrote: "The people pushing the recall effort, Funk's sworn political enemies, came out and admitted that the general consensus of the Kansas City populace is to support Funk's agenda."

Here's what Dan wrote: "Kansas City wants Funkhouser to fulfill his agenda for the city."

So to answer your question of "Has anyone here claimed that this means support for Funk?" The answer is yes. You and Dan both have. Quite clearly.

I wouldn't disagree that people want to give him "more time," but giving him more time does not equate to support. It only means voters weren't ready to pull the trigger on THIS specific recall effort. I wouldn't have signed it. Mainstream wouldn't have signed it. But if you think for a heartbeat that we and a large number of Kansas Citians "support" Funk, then you're the ones who are confused. Not everyone who does a subpar job gets fired.

Oh, and we don't have "hateful hopes." I love my city, and I'm optimistic that it can get better. I just don't believe Funk is up to the job. And if all Funk has to offer voters in response to the recall petition failing is to take a victory lap, then he's as doomed to fail as this recall effort was.

2/20/2008 12:00 PM  
Anonymous Back with the Funk said...

Nitwit - do you understand that there is a distinction between supporting the Funk, which I haven't talked about, and neither has Dan, and supporting his agenda, which the general consensus of KC, according to the people who pushed the petition, does?

2/20/2008 12:38 PM  
Anonymous the nitwit said...

Of course, Back, I do get your distinction. However, I fear that you, Dan, Yael and Funk are grossly misreading the mood of the electorate on this one.

Of course we all want a "city that works," but we're not getting it, and we're especially not getting it from this mayor and his continual litany of screw ups.

So yes, we're all willing to give him a little bit more time, but that doesn't mean a lot of folks have confidence that he'll actually do anything with that time. And it also doesn't mean he has an infinite amount of time to start delivering some tangible results. Funk is like an employee on probation at this point, and he'd better not be expecting to win tenure.

This recall was poorly executed and not well planned out. But the fact that a lot of folks wouldn't sign it says more about the recall itself and a lot less about support for Funk or his agenda. They didn't even collect signatures on election day. Had they done that and garnered zero signatures, your argument might hold more water.

Get with it: Funk has time, but the clock is definitely ticking.

2/20/2008 3:13 PM  
Blogger ryan said...

He has a little over three years. Those years will be plagued by misleading press releases from Glorioso and vengeful development lawyers, thousands of hateful blog posts, etc.

The thing is, if those people really wanted the city to work, I imagine they'd lay off the vitriolic rhetoric and let the guy do his job. But that's not what they want. Oh, they'll try to stake out the moral high ground and tell you it's raining while they're pissing in your ear, with self-righteous proclamations of how they are just trying to save the city from Funkenstein's wickedness. But it's all a ruse.

For many, it isn't about whether the city works, it's 100% personal. It's a smear campaign to repay Funky for whatever evil thing he did to you. Maybe he took away your cookie jar, or talked bad about your buddies and the way you do business, or maybe he didn't give your mom a prominent position at city hall.

In any case, none of this serves any purpose except making the guy look bad in the notoriously unjust court of public opinion, and willfully cock blocking progress by diverting focus from the city's real problems to Funky's imaginary personal ones.

But that's politics. If you don't have much of a policy case against your enemy, call them "stubborn" and "hard to work with," or even better, "idealistic"--of course, when you're using idealistic as a pejorative, you yourself are obviously "pragmatic".

If the dev/hater crowd play their cards right, Funky will be an easy incumbent to unseat. All they have to do is take the Barnes-era decisions that Funk warned against making in the first place, and twist it around so they can blame them on him! Which is, no doubt, what will happen if P&L doesn't meet expectations.

2/20/2008 3:46 PM  
Anonymous mainstream said...

Ryan,

I understand your point about people wanting to undermine the mayor. Those people are out there.

However, you're making a big mistake by charaterizing all of his critics as being somehow haters or inherently evil in their motivations.

Funk supporters may think they're on a mission from God, but the reality is that Funk is an extremely flawed leader, he has much to learn about actually getting work done and actually getting things accomplished.

It's painfully clear that he is having trouble getting out of the 18-year old mold of sitting in the peanut gallery throwing shells down at people.

Nothing good will ever come out of the attitude that one's critics are misguided and evil.

2/20/2008 4:04 PM  
Anonymous ray ray said...

great post main

serious concerns about someone who has been in the postiion he has for all those years, and all he seemingly can do is form commissions/committees to come up with policy recommendations. Thats is the opposite of leadership.

2/20/2008 11:01 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

I'd just like to thank you for writing about me again Dan. I don't even want to insult you since it's clear I have a great "share of mind" with you. I love all my fans. Keep up the great working following and promoting my blog.

2/21/2008 5:17 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

No problem, Tony. I remember when you would link to me when I was getting started, and I would see a bump in traffic. Those days are long gone, but I still keep an eye on the joke blog.

And let me thank you for your attention, while we're in full appreciation mode. One of my buddies looked at our archives, and you write about me almost twice as often as I write about you, so, really, the thanks belong to you.

Keep on plugging away, Tony.

2/21/2008 5:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

looks like there are two joke blogs in kansas city. Polar opposites on political views, but seemingly obsessed with each other. One blog is funny and admits he shouldnt be taken seriously, the other trying to be serious and self important and ending up as humorous for the effort.

2/21/2008 10:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wrong, Anonymous. One is a hatefilled, misogynist racist diatribe out to divide KC, mostly because the Mayor wouldn't hire Tony's worthless mom, and Gone Mild is an intelligent, thoughtful, honest and well-written personal blog.

The good news is that you're not forced to come here if you don't like it.

2/21/2008 10:22 AM  
Anonymous Aleks said...

"I remember those douchebags at the Blue Blog acting all gaga"

Did this guy actually use Douchebags and gaga in the same sentence? What does "all gaga" mean anyways? Does The Pitch sell an Funkhouser's Guide To The Elitest Language??

2/21/2008 10:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Like everything Tony has touched, the recall turned aout to be a failure. He couldn't even keep a job at Hispanic News for crying out loud!!

2/26/2008 11:09 PM  

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