Saturday, August 31, 2002

Do The Bart, Man

Proving why you should never let elitist-aesthete Socialist reporters write about issues close to their hearts -- it always overrides their minds -- Bartholomew Sullivan has this story about the inauguration of County Mayor AC Wharton on Friday. It's billed as a straight news story, but just start with the headline, for cryin' out loud:

Wharton Takes Oath With Can-Do Gusto

Then read these excerpts:
Wharton was the main speaker at a ceremony in
which the county's constitutional officers, including new sheriff
Mark Luttrell, along with county judges and county commissioners
took their respective oaths of office. Wharton thanked them all
for meeting in a symbolic show of unity.

Before the session, Memphis Mayor Willie Herenton said
Wharton's inauguration indicates "this community has reached a
state of enlightenment that goes beyond some of the barriers
that have kept us polarized."

George Flinn, who lost the mayoral contest to Wharton,
congratulated him Friday as "my brother, my mayor, my friend."

A mood of celebration pervaded the ceremony. The crowd was
wowed by the Whitehaven High Band and Jazz Enemble and
mesmerized by a rendition of The Star-Spangled Banner by Shana
Margolin, an eighth-grader at St. Mary's Episcopal School.

But the ceremony reached its crescendo when Wharton, the
county's chief public defender, received a standing ovation after
taking his oath.

In brief remarks, he thanked God, his parents, his friends from
Middle Tennessee and out of state and other public officials
before stating simply, "We have a good county. It's our job as
newly elected officials to move it on to become an even greater
county, and we will do that."

He said he promised integrity and honesty and hard work....

The crowd got the message and roared its agreement....

Reaching the climax of his speech, Wharton turned folksy....
Yep. That was a news story. No bias there, no sir. Just the facts.

But if you read to the final paragraphs of the story you get to the real eye-opener, which is glanced over in the earlier going:
Wharton also said he plans to convene a growth summit within
45 days to form a controlled growth plan with the force of law,
one that will balance "the community's commitment to inner-city
redevelopment and suburban development."

"You talk about growth, and the bankers say one thing, the
developers-home builders say one thing. The real estate agents
say another. Environmentalists say another. And it becomes very
strident," he said.

"What I'm going to do is do as Portland, Oregon, and Austin,
Texas, and other cities have done - and pull everybody together.
It's never been done here."
Controlled development? In Shelby County? Maybe that's why he's convening a summit, so he can disassociate himself from it when things fall apart. The cat is out of the bag long ago and she's had kittens. Efforts at "controlling" the mess we already have, and the extant plans for more, are so long past due as to be ineffectual and impositional.

Watch in the coming week to see if Wharton now declares for consolidation. I'll take bets.

And pity poor Bart, the enlightened man stuck in the mosquito-laden swamps of Memphis.

Until next time,
Your Working Boy

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