Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Portland Mayor’s Race

Max Brumm is running for Mayor of Portland.

And his opponents – the ones so far announced – don’t seem to have a lot of ideas.

So they are co-opting Max’s ideas.  And as they co-opt Max’s ideas, they, of course, don’t make any attribution.  Attribution would admit that there is a candidate named Max Brumm.

And that, they must feel, would be a mistake.

It is better to just pretend that no such person exists.

Max Brumm is a viable candidate for the job of mayor of Portland Oregon..

How do I know that?  Instinct mainly.

But I have known him for quite some time and I have noticed that he always means what he says. 

And that is, from my point of view, an important characteristic in a leader.  And what he has said, and, therefore, what he means, are ideas that could be important for the City of Portland.

That is probably why his opponents are beginning to offer up his ideas as their own.

And that just isn’t right.

His opponents apparently are scared to death of what Max Brumm is. That is because: he has no history; he has no interest groups; he has no money. He is just the raw sort of politician that – in the old days – used  to win elections - before money and party - became the only names of the game.

So what are Max’s opponents saying about him?

How interesting.

They aren’t saying anything about him.

In fact, they are ignoring him.

But – as they ignore – they adopt.

They adopt Max’s propositions to the voters of Portland.

And therein lies a tale.

So, let’s look at it.

Max said, when he announced in April – he was the first – that he had four issues and a slogan.  The slogan would be the banner; the issues would be what he would carry forward as part of his administration’s to-do items. They were:

1. The Max Banner: “Change Starts at the top”

2. Issue One: We need efficient City Infrastructure

3. Issue Two: The Pot is the Pot.  Switching Money Around Doesn’t Change the Amount Available.

4. Issue Three: Parks are a disgrace.  They need to be turned into something that a world class city would consider to be acceptable.

That was April.

This is July.

So what is different?


Max now has two opponents. 

And they won’t admit that they are running against a nineteen year old who is serious.

But what they have begun to decide to say would seem to indicate that they have noticed Max and have discovered the issues that Max has made part of his campaign from the start. Here is what they are now saying, long after Max first said it.

!. The Food Lady says we need to change things at the top.

2. The food lady also says that we need more city infrastructure.

3. The Stephenson Guy says that we can’t keep moving money around.

4. The Stephenson Guy also says that we need better parks.  (So, why is somebody from Washington in this race anyway?)

As an interested observer from Seattle (so do I get to run also) I just wanted to point out an apparent electoral oddity: the best candidate in the Portland Mayor’s race is being treated as if he were invisible.

Luckily Max is highly, in fact, visible.  And to date he seems to be the one with the ideas.

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