Some people should not be involved in government

Just now, I was stopped at an intersection not far from my home when Sandra Motzer, crossing the street with her husband Tim, said loudly, “Oh god, there she is!” They passed in front of my car, Tim Motzer smirking.

Sandra Motzer, active in numerous neighborhood organizations including the councils, is someone who once wrote an email to other members of her neighborhood watch, several developers, and several apparent house flippers, talking about how parking strips could be marked and then the codes enforced to get renters in her neighborhood to move. Perhaps not so auspiciously for the homeless, she also chaired the Lake City neighborhood committee on Mayor Murray’s homelessness initiative. Tim Motzer is a former City of Seattle Parks and Recreation manager and, at least until Mayor Murray withdrew funding from the neighborhood council (I haven’t kept up on that; I hope¬† funding was not restored), was active in the neighborhood councils as well as a neighborhood watch member who attempted to intimidate renters in his neighborhood out of parking on public streets with a public display of anger and fist-shaking.

It’s hard to imagine that people like this exist, or that they would be welcome in local government in an increasingly diverse community of any egalitarian spirit. I’ve barely even met either of them and probably spoke with one briefly once or twice before their sentiments became clear. With behavior more fitting for high school than in community, it’s no wonder what has happened to me in my neighborhood; small-minded people are the spirit of mobbing. These are the people who would be enthralled by an old-fashioned shaming of those they cannot control.

Mean-spirited people who hide what they are in positions of supposed benevolence, small-minded people who drain city coffers with their nuisance complaints, their incessant and often bogus reports of civil code violations, their misuse of civil services including false reports to police, people like these who would try to run off those who rent or those they plain don’t like, should be excluded from leadership roles. This is the only way to create change for the better. The time for “leaders” like Tim and Sandra Motzer has long since passed.

 

Advertisements

On the mob and the decision of Mayor Murray to dismantle the Seattle neighborhood council system

A couple months back, someone sent me a link to SEIU 775 president David Rolf’s opinion piece in the Seattle Times, “Seattle’s neighborhood councils have raised selfishness to an art form” (July 25, 2016, http://www.seattletimes.com/opinion/seattle-neighborhood-councils-selfishness-raised-to-an-art-form/). Preoccupied as I was much of the summer with the sad process of evicting a deadbeat roommate, I didn’t get around to it earlier. But that’s just as well since I would have missed including a link to The Stranger‘s acerbic headline on Mayor Murray’s attempts to deal with Seattle’s housing affordability crisis:¬†“Seattle’s Neighborhood Councils Are Exclusionary, Self-Interested ‘Cartels,’ and the City Wants to Cut Ties with Them.”

In his attempt to hold back the growing “economic apartheid” that exists in Seattle, Mayor Murray issued an executive order defunding the neighborhood “cartels,” and should be issuing further legislation on the matter to city council chambers, well, just about now. (The Stranger, http://www.thestranger.com/news/2016/08/03/24422135/seattles-neighborhood-councils-are-exclusionary-self-interested-cartels-and-the-city-wants-to-cut-ties-with-them.)

David Rolf’s op-ed piece begins with a single statement that acknowledges the position of those who rent in neighborhoods like my own:

We should not use taxpayer money to support Seattle neighborhood councils that have an agenda excluding renters, people of color, the young, the poor and those who need social services from their neighborhoods.

Rolf’s comments that neighborhood councils consistently argue against new development do not address neighborhoods like mine in which watch and council members welcome the razing of existing single family houses in favor of new single family residences that can be sold at the million dollar mark, or for razing smaller, older properties to allow speculators on either side to “build out” before they flip the homes they own.

Continue reading