Greater Eureka Chamber of Commerce vs democracy in Eureka

chamber of com

On Saturday Linda Atkins wrote “The Greater Eureka Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors recently announced that it is going to get involved in local elections” then asked “why now?”  Well, it seems pretty clear to us. The good ol’ boys had lost their majority to the all woman progressive (actually centrist) leaning City Council and now they all going all in to get it back. Matthew Owen and John Fullerton are the Chamber candidates and then there’s the very scary (to the good ol boys) “true ward true voice” ballot measure that would actually facilitate someone from your neighborhood or maybe even you, to be elected. Now that scares the crap out of the Eureka Chamber, Robin Arkley and Rob Mcbeth types.

c of c building

Linda also says “, the city of Eureka supports the Chamber with about $120,000 a year from city coffers for them to do visitor services. In addition, the chamber’s headquarters located on land owned by the city of Eureka and leased to the chamber for $1. (prime real estate worth over a million dollars) The headquarters is the location where chamber board meetings occur and where chamber offices are located. Does this mean that the city of Eureka is subsidizing an organization that will be campaigning against candidates and issues that will affect the future of our city?”  Ya think?

The ol’ boys are so scared that Tom Hannah (the God father of our current screwed up city charter and corrupt ward system) in a near hysterical diatribe in today’s Time Standard went so far has to invoke the name of the dreaded former city councilor Larry Glass…twice. The mere mention of his name is a dog whistle for the powers that be in this town striking terror in their hearts.  Hannah goes on to say “This would be detrimental to the quality of life in Eureka. Implementing a ward election could only lay the groundwork to undermine the current council-manager format municipal government chosen by voters in 1950, and mandated by your city charter.”  He forgot to mention that he and Eureka’s power brokers wrote the charter to keep themselves in power for perpetuity.

This year brings a chance for Eureka voters to choose a system of election which would bring an inclusive neighborhood based City Council…..and maybe take a step in breaking the stranglehold on local politics which the good ol’ boys are desperately holding on to.

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8 thoughts on “Greater Eureka Chamber of Commerce vs democracy in Eureka

  1. What a grump! He really likes to end his rants with the same old adage. C’mon, Eureka! You can do better than this 1950 convoluted ward system.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Tom Hannah is right: It’s just divisive politics. No one wants divisiveness, do they?

    Why stop there? Obviously representative politics is by it’s nature divisive, so we should also do away with both houses of both the State and Federal governments. That way we could free ourselves of all that divisive talk going around every two years.

    Let’s just elect some guy to run things until he dies. No that’s not right, then you’d have all that divisiveness when our Leader kicks the bucket…

    Wait, I got it. That guy’s kids could then run things. Yeah, that’s the ticket. I mean, it works pretty smoothly on Game of Thrones, doesn’t it?

    Democracy is a very annoying way to go. That is in the very nature of representative government. I’m sorry to read that Mr. Hannah considers it too annoying for his own tolerance.

    I think democracy is still worth the effort to put up with it.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Oh ya Right Tom the Ward system has worked just fine to keep you and your ilk in power for decades.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. As Trump would say, it is a rigged system. However, it is rigged in favor of the local moneyed power brokers.. Has been for years and it is surprising a centrist majority even got control of the council. Actually, a real progressive like a Larry Glass on council would scare the crap out of the power brokers. He and Linda Atkins were in the minority on the council and still got a lot done. Principled ideas still have a chance, providing it is a level playing field.

    Liked by 2 people

    • And Larry Glass lost his bid for re- election to a virtual unknown: Marian Brady. He likely would have lost under a ward system, too.

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      • Typical revisionist history from Fred, She was far from unknown, Brady outspent Glass 4 to 1 not counting Arkley’s measure N money. I remember Eureka (and strangely Cutten) being awash in Brady bunch signs and daily slick mailers.
        Hey Fred did you get a job at that shiny new Marina Center?

        Liked by 2 people

  5. Putting this issue on the ballot is the biggest accomplishment yet for this council, but it will take some organizing to counter the BS that’s going to be leveled against it. Otherwise, without a 2016 political candidate to hammer the issue, it will fall victim to the right wing echo chamber.

    When has the Chamber of Commerce NOT been involved in local politics? Not one media source or council member bothered to query how they were allowed to put an anti-Measure “R” statement on the Nov.2012 ballot “on behalf of the city” without a public hearing.

    Unfortunately, we lack the public-interest media necessary to demand answers to simple questions like, “who benefits most from candidates requiring tens of thousands of dollars to campaign citywide instead of the cost of a good pair of shoes to cover their ward a few times”?

    Obviously, the beneficiaries are the same folks with the deepest pockets buying most media ads, who, according to the Republican gospel, trickle-down prosperity on all.

    What trickled down from the 1950’s were highly toxic “tee pee burners”, pulp mills, a nuke, and a bay surrounded in brownfields killing jobs and poisoning this county’s highest population center. They said “yes” to every job-killing big box, they even wanted to level Old Town to get rid of the “riffraff” but wanted public money to pay for it, just like Eureka’s promotional billboards the Chamber of Commerce will not help fund despite the outrageous public subsidies they receive…to promote Eureka! Since the 1980’s Eureka’s Greedheads conspired in 2 housing bubbles by effectively fighting every affordable housing tool.

    As a result, the only thing that has gotten these goons to appreciate the importance of greenbelts and a clean environment is their hatred of the homeless living on the bay, an epidemic their policies helped create.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. The Eureka Chamber of Commerce Board has already been involved in local elections. The City of Eureka illegally allowed the Chamber to put an argument (full of lies) on the 2014 ballot against the Eureka Fair Wage Act. Don Smullin appears to make almost the entire $120,000+ a year that we unwittingly subsidize the Chamber with. To do NOTHING. Except to use their power and money to keep most of the people of Eureka in poverty. Fullerton, Owens, and the Chamber are enemies of the common people. They tell the same lies that harm the people. They are selfish and self-serving… and dishonest.

    Liked by 2 people

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