Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Berry And Canada Might Have Something in Common, Plus: Alligator Hypocrisy In Rep. Maez Blog? And: More On Valentino's Valentine To The Fourth Floor 

Berry by Bralley
ABQ Mayor Berry has presided over tumultuous times in city history, with the ongoing APD crisis and the downsizing of the economy two of the more dramatic developments that rocked the city since he took the helm in December 2009. Still, among those most likely to vote in city elections-- a much smaller, older, more conservative and less Hispanic electorate than you get in a regular election--Berry wins positive approval numbers. A poll we had conducted last September had him at 60% approval with that crowd.

If you're among the Berry critics you might find this take on the nine year tenure of Conservative Party Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper applies to explaining Berry as well:

He promised a steady and quiet life, undisturbed by painful facts. The Harper years have not been terrible; they’ve just been bland and purposeless. Mr. Harper represents the politics of willful ignorance. It has its attractions.

Berry is adept at filtering the reality he wants to see so today's photo of him sporting sunglasses seems especially apropos.

Keeping it at City Hall, what about those reports here that city Cultural Services Director Betty Rivera was headed for the exits after it was reported several of her staffers took an expensive taxpayer-paid junket to New Orleans? Well, Rivera is still there and we pressed our Senior Alligator about what's going on:

The source is sure that Chief Administrative Officer Rob Perry took action to terminate Betty and announced it at the director's staff meeting. They report that later in the week Betty appeared at culural affairs venues where she had not been seen before. The guess is that she went to Berry and he rescued her - if she did her job.

That makes sense but we don't like it when a Senior Alligator is not the direct source of their info as was the case on this one. Appropriate punishment in this case is more than 10 lashes with the wet noodle.

Speaking of sources. . .


We're we hypocritical to criticize KOB-TV for using an anonymous woman (they showed only her hands) to attack ABQ Dem State Rep. Stephanie Maez on how she raised her son who is now charged with murder? The woman, among other things, claimed Maez kicked her son out of the house when he was 11 and basically "threw" him away. This anonymous reader zinged us this way:

Joe, You're right about the shoddy journalism KOB used to publish an anonymous statement to indict a public official. Better if KOB had just described the anonymous woman as one of your "alligators," then it would be OK.

No, we are not hypocritical because our anonymous Alligators don't concern themselves with the personal lives of people as GOP BernCo Commissioner Johnson did in his hit on Maez or as the anonymous woman did. (The story containing the Johnson quote has been removed from the KOB-TV site. We know of no other media he spoke with).

This blog is not and never has been a forum to attack an individual's character or lifestyle, whether it be a politician or a private citizen. We will call into question a politician's character as to how it plays out in regard to public policy but not his or her personal life. Everyone deserves a zone of privacy.

Unless Commissioner Johnson is going to condemn the parents of every person involved in a major crime and question them as unfit to participate in public affairs (as he did with Maez) he should walk back his comments. As for KOB, next time you have someone (even a relative) making personal charges against someone put a camera on the face or else spike the story.

Now more on this from a reader--Larissa Lewis--a mother whose child was murdered:

As the mother of a murder victim (UNM engineering student Kerry Lewis 7/10/09) I have compassion for the moms of murderers. Evil tragedies destroy many lives and hearts. Nothing will bring back the dead, and being a killer is a living death. The focus should be on reducing the influence gangs and drugs have on our youth, not easy blame after-the-fact. Albuquerque has almost the highest concentration of gang members per capita-why? Cut the crime chain, don't glamorize it. (or profit from it).
Discouraged, but still hopeful-Larissa

Thanks, Larissa, As we've blogged for years, when it comes to kids much of the state is a mess. That's why we're supporting a constitutional amendment that would ask voters to approve the use of a small portion of the state's $15 billion Land Grant Permanent fund to fund very early childhood education--prenatal through age 5. The goal is to help set kids (and parents) on a course early where the gangs, the drugs and other dysfunction does not have the power over them it has today. Let's not blame. Let's build.


A reader with a background in education administration writes of the troubles of new APS Superintendent Luis Valentino and his hook-up with the current powers-that-be:

Perhaps a clue that the Californian might not do too well was when he immediately brought three of his highly-paid associates into APS positions. A wise administrator would leave the current administrators in place for awhile--observing and learning the local "system" from them and evaluating them on the their job performances before making significant changes. And yet, he did seem to get hooked into the Martinez Machine power axis quickly. One wonders who has his ear and is giving him advice on La Politica in New Mexico.

To polish this off with a bad pun: Valentino making like a valentine with the Martinez Machine is enough to give those APS teachers heartburn.

This is it. . . .

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