It is said a photograph is worth a thousand words, so a video must be worth a couple thousand, right?
Today the YouTube video has become the new communication vehicle of politics, as last month’s primary demonstrated in abundance. In recent years, a new cottage industry of small scale video producers has sprung up, creating and distributing video on as many subjects as there are interests. Applying humor and satire to address the shortcomings of our elected politicians is a natural fit and often times it serves as a subtle (or not so subtle) means to focus public opinion on the issues at hand. After all, who hasn’t seen a JibJab video?
noun ( pl. hypocrisies )
the practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behavior does not conform; pretense.
In calling attention to Commissioner Todd Johnson’s recent meeting absence, I could have written a letter to the editor (I may still do that) pointing out the blatant hypocrisy of his attack on Commissioners Rogers and Kuehler a year ago, when they went on spring break with their families. A video just made the point better and of course, in a more entertaining way.
“During closing comments, Johnson said the county was dealing with major problems and all board members should be present.” is a quote from the EJ story, “Johnson criticizes meeting attendance of Rogers, Kuehler”, published April 20, 2011.
Johnson attacked both Commissioners who were out of state on vacation with their families. He conveniently used commissioners comments at the end of the meeting — it was premeditated, mean-spirited and most of all unnecessary. In fact, the hallmark of Commissioner’s Jonathan Thomas and Johnson time in office, has been the constant attack on both women Commissioners.
A year has passed and the Union County Public Schools is in a funding crisis, teachers are being laid off! What more of “major problem” is there?
Is Johnson’s reported “working” vacation to the Virgin Islands any different than other Commissioners taking vacations during the year? No. Being an elected official does not mean you sacrifice your responsibility to your families — Todd Johnson is not the exception. Conventions and “Spring Breaks” are date restricted, so some accommodation is due, but I do think all Commissioners should be present for the budget hearings and budget vote.
Making it political and sowing discord among on the board members was result Johnson’s rant last year. There is no vacuum in local politics and as long as elected officials break “promises” or attack others, they themselves can and will be justifiably criticized.
The caustic atmosphere of commissioner meetings now and for many, many years in the past, do not serve the county or it’s citizens well. It only serves to minimize the number of citizen candidates interested in serving on the board.
Commissioners should respect each other for their opinions and let the show of hands be the final decision on an issue.