Have you seen this in the Scene

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Jim O'Bryan
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Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby Jim O'Bryan » Tue Aug 31, 2010 7:21 am

http://www.clevescene.com/cleveland/port-in-a-storm/Content?oid=2013336

Port In The Storm

An article about how corruption and power has kept Cleveland back.


.


Jim O'Bryan
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"The very act of observing disturbs the system."
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Bill Call
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Re: Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby Bill Call » Tue Aug 31, 2010 12:08 pm

Jim O'Bryan wrote:http://www.clevescene.com/cleveland/port-in-a-storm/Content?oid=2013336

Port In The Storm

An article about how corruption and power has kept Cleveland back.


.


I not only saw it, I actually read it!

It was a good review of the whole Port fiasco.

The article mentioned that no one was willing to go on record with their concerns about the Port Authority. Apparently, many people in positions of authority thought

the Port Authority was a corrupt
and incompetenct agency
run for the benefit of the people who served on the board
and that its plans for the future of the port were
unrealistic
dangerous
foolish
too expensive
poorly planed,
and just plan dumb.

BUT
they were to afraid to say so publicly.

SO

What is it in their carreers, lives and fortunes that is so dependent on the cabal that makes them so afraid that they can't point out the obvious flaws in the Ports plans?

A related issue and question is:

Why is Akron and Summit County set to surpass Cleveland in virtually every area?

CSU is failing, Akron U is thriving
Cleveland Hopkins is failing, Akron Canton is thriving
High tech first shun Cleveland but not Akron


and more

but I've already provided more examples than there are people who care about this issue. Something like the Lakewood Schools.

If I had the time or talent I'd do a study on what makes Akron succeed where Cleveland fails.

If the new County Executive isn't able and willing to shake the ruling cabal to its foundations then this whole "reform" movement was a waste of time.


Bryan Schwegler
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Re: Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby Bryan Schwegler » Tue Aug 31, 2010 12:46 pm

Bill Call wrote:CSU is failing, Akron U is thriving


Where do you come to that conclusion?


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Re: Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby sharon kinsella » Wed Sep 01, 2010 3:30 pm

Did anyone else find some of the people associated with this to be familiar and the tactics similar to a local organization?


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Re: Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby Stan Austin » Wed Sep 01, 2010 4:30 pm

Bill---- I am in general agreement with you that local government processes have not served their direct constituents.

The cause or blame can span the spectrum starting and ending with human nature.

That being said-- your direction in your posts has clearly been less government, minimalist government.

I am, however, left with the disconcerting feeling that any solutions to the problems that you have accurately presented rest with a "strong man" type of government, the antithesis of your philosophy.

Is this what you are calling for? Clear this up!

Stan


Bill Call
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Re: Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby Bill Call » Wed Sep 01, 2010 5:07 pm

Bryan Schwegler wrote:
Bill Call wrote:CSU is failing, Akron U is thriving


Where do you come to that conclusion?


I'm working on it. I'm waiting for CSU to release their enrollment for the year.


Stan Austin wrote:Bill---- I am in general agreement with you that local government processes have not served their direct constituents.

Tsolutions to the problems that you have accurately presented rest with a "strong man" type of government, the antithesis of your philosophy.

Is this what you are calling for? Clear this up!

Stan


That is a insightfull question.

The short answer:

I'd prefer that the federal and state governments wouldn't be spending billions to subsidize the death of cities but they are.

I'd prefer that the various boards and commission that have evolved into caccooned sinecures weren't corrupt and self serving but they are.

Cuyahoga County spends hundreds of million of dollars to subsidze, the Port, the airport, the universities the colleges and the arts. A strong County Executive should exert pressure on those institutions to bring the economic center of gravity back to Downtown and the inner ring suburbs.

Bringing strong management, operational efficiency and honesty to the current functions of county government are the easy part. The hard part will be to coral the "non governmental" agencies that spend so many tax dollars with little accountability.

It would not hurt to also excert some pressure on State government. $165 million on a the Nelsonville bi-pass to nowhere using stimulus money earmarked for Cleveland and our elected leaders are silent?

One reason Akron is doing so well is because it has a strong Mayor. A strong elected official is not the same as a strong man.

That's not a really good answer but it's the best I can come up with for now.


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Re: Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby Stan Austin » Wed Sep 01, 2010 5:24 pm

Bill, I understand and appreciate your reply under a time duress. I really think this should be the direction of our discussions, namely how do we organize ourselves. This new county government, so far, is just a Chevy Biscayne trying to be an Impala.
Stan


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Re: Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby Will Brown » Wed Sep 01, 2010 7:50 pm

How much does Cuyahoga county spend on the universities and colleges?

The art receive money from a tax the people enacted specifically to support the arts. That doesn't appear to be a subsidy from the county; all they do is administer the collection and distribution of that tax.

And I'm not sure that the county subsidizes the port authority, which apparently has the authority to raise money by issuing bonds itself.

The economic center of gravity of the county has never encompassed the inner ring suburbs. It has usually been the city of Cleveland. Lakewood has never been more than a bedroom suburb for people who worked in Cleveland, although with the decline of Cleveland, we are now existing largely on cottage industry.

And I'm not familiar with fiscal operation of the airport, but it seems to be largely under the control of the city of Cleveland, rather than the county.


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David Anderson
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Re: Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby David Anderson » Fri Sep 03, 2010 2:01 pm

“A Prayer for the City” is a fascinating book profiling the struggles of Philadelphia. (I highly recommend it to anyone interested in big city politics and the never ending fight to recalibrate an industrial metropolis.)

The book revealed that 1994 was the first Presidential election in which more votes came from the suburbs and rural communities than the urban cities. I thought folks might appreciate the role this stat/observation plays in the shifting public policy debate related to defining what an economic center of gravity is, the importance of a thriving urban core (or lack thereof) and the balance of power in the political world (clearly not in the hands of urban leaders).


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Re: Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby Bryan Schwegler » Fri Sep 03, 2010 7:26 pm

Will Brown wrote:How much does Cuyahoga county spend on the universities and colleges?


The only college supported at the county level is Tri-C and they have their own tax levy and distinct funding. I'm pretty sure it's not supported from county general funds.


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Jim O'Bryan
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Re: Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby Jim O'Bryan » Sat Sep 04, 2010 6:19 am

But to go back to the article and Bill's original comments.

Why is it we this city and region find it OK when elected officials are afraid to speak the truth?

Why do we all sit back and let non-elected groups have some much power they can run
and control the elected officials.

Why do we as a community not understand that many if not all special interest groups
and civic leaders soon have more power than they should and than that powers corrupts.

I can disagree with Bill on many things, but at some point the government that is elected
has to get back to serving the needs of the people that elected them, not merely the needs
of the people they are willing to go to lunch or dinner with.

This region, this area and yes this community need to wake up to why it is going nowhere.

FWIW


.


Jim O'Bryan
Lakewood Resident

"The very act of observing disturbs the system."
Werner Heisenberg

"If anything I've said seems useful to you, I'm glad.
If not, don't worry. Just forget about it."
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Phil Florian
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Re: Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby Phil Florian » Sun Sep 05, 2010 8:15 am

Jim O'Bryan wrote:Why is it we this city and region find it OK when elected officials are afraid to speak the truth?

Why do we all sit back and let non-elected groups have some much power they can run
and control the elected officials.

Why do we as a community not understand that many if not all special interest groups
and civic leaders soon have more power than they should and than that powers corrupts.



I don't think anyone finds it "okay" but how much more can citizens do? If you support government you get cowardly hacks or corruption and if you support biz you get the ones that are creating the hacks and the corrupted politicians. Where is the entry point? The largest watchdog of this locally, the media, is limp and cowardly, too. The PD now lacks the ability to do even basic journalism. They have shrunk so much that they post AP articles and fluff pieces mostly and lack the resources or seemingly the interest in doing in-depth articles. The Scene can do these good articles but no enough people read them and take them seriously. Do you think anyone in the region is seriously shuddering when a weekly free 'zine takes a serious swipe at them?

What is the check and balance in this region?


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They are too lazy or stupid to reach correct...conclusions, or
They are biased by their self-interest, dogma, or ideology."
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Bill Call
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Re: Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby Bill Call » Sun Sep 05, 2010 9:47 am

Will Brown wrote:How much does Cuyahoga county spend on the universities and colleges?

The art receive money from a tax the people enacted specifically to support the arts. That doesn't appear to be a subsidy from the county; all they do is administer the collection and distribution of that tax.

And I'm not sure that the county subsidizes the port authority, which apparently has the authority to raise money by issuing bonds itself.


The Port Authority is subsidized by County property taxes. The County Commissioners appoint some members of the Port Board.

Tri-C receives about 30% of its budget from County wide property taxes.

The Arts are subsidized by a County wide sales tax.

The Airport is a City of Cleveland operation.

I'm probably expecting too much from the new County Executive. It seems the corrupution and incompentence run so deep that County employees can cut their own property taxes:

http://blog.cleveland.com/metro/2010/09 ... oards.html

Perhaps the most we can hope for is a midling level of compentence and honesty that keeps County government out of the headlines. I think we should demand more.

Any institution that receives any funding from County wide taxes should be held accountable to the elected County Executive and Council. Without that additional level of scrutiny those institutions can and will and do behave no better than the Port Authority.

The new County Executive will have an opportunity to set the template for how this County is governed. A bold and decisive Executive can set the agenda and take control of these uncontrolled institutions.

When the Plain Dealer talks about reform and regionalization they don't mean better managed and more accountable County institutions. They mean "Lakewood has its own water department and Parma has its own fire department and that is a bad thing."

They are wrong on all levels. Will the new County Executive challenge them or give in?


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Re: Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby Grace O'Malley » Mon Sep 06, 2010 12:01 pm

Bill

How can you say CSU is failing with a straight face?

http://www.csuohio.edu/news/releases/2010/09/14840.html

CSU has seen an increase in enrollment, a new high in fact, and continued improvement in the stats of the enrolled student body.

Take a drive by the campus: new student center, new dorms, new Education building, lots of activity. Beyond the buildings, CSU has a new Science Entrepreneurship program to encourage people to take ideas and turn them into income generating businesses. There is a new Biotech program and a Gene Research center. Many professors have joint projects with CWRU and the Cleveland Clinic.


CSU is thriving as never before. How you can say they are failing is beyond me.


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Re: Have you seen this in the Scene

Postby Jim O'Bryan » Tue Sep 07, 2010 7:05 am

Bill Call wrote:Any institution that receives any funding from County wide taxes should be held accountable to the elected County Executive and Council. Without that additional level of scrutiny those institutions can and will and do behave no better than the Port Authority.

The new County Executive will have an opportunity to set the template for how this County is governed. A bold and decisive Executive can set the agenda and take control of these uncontrolled institutions.

When the Plain Dealer talks about reform and regionalization they don't mean better managed and more accountable County institutions. They mean "Lakewood has its own water department and Parma has its own fire department and that is a bad thing."

They are wrong on all levels. Will the new County Executive challenge them or give in?


Bill

I would say any group that receives public funding, should be accountable and closed down
if there is transparency issues. We o not have the millions and billions to waster any longer.
This county is filled with "civic leaders" who are just there for the check, not to lead, not to
improve, and certainly not to make things better so they are not needed any longer.

It is a region based on GRANT ECONOMY and that is not sustainable.

When the PD writes it it is to fill pages in their "regional" publication. Of course they are
for regionalism.

I agree with Grace. CSU and Tri-C as as full as they can get, and both are looking to grow.

.


Jim O'Bryan
Lakewood Resident

"The very act of observing disturbs the system."
Werner Heisenberg

"If anything I've said seems useful to you, I'm glad.
If not, don't worry. Just forget about it."
His Holiness The Dalai Lama

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