Ok Janesville, let me ask you a very serious question. Based upon some of the response I received this past Thursday on the radio show, you would have thought I declared war on anyone attempting to run for elected office in Janesville, or anywhere else for that matter. Many of my friends on the left or self-described “good loyal democrats” were concerned for my well-being, even going so far as to ask me if I were “Ok”.
For the record, I’m fine. Now, let’s get serious & back to the question. If you have a potential candidate for the Janesville City Council who has filed papers and is seeking the mandated number of signatures required to make that candidacy official, and it has been public knowledge since written about in the Janesville Gazette, is it fair to look into his or her background, educational, military, professional, or non-professional work experience?....And does that potential candidates political affiliations, leanings and activism have any bearing on your final analysis & decision as to whether or not he or she is a worthy candidate?
Here is the shortest answer I can give you. You’re damn right it does.
One of the things made very clear to me since arriving in Janesville a few months ago, is the amount of economic suffering, both personal & commercially, that has taken place. It has been especially devastating in Janesville and all of Rock County since the loss of the plant & the recession. I didn’t just get this information from City & County officials; I actually speak to my neighbors. Yes that’s right! I’m a fellow Janesville resident, economic stimulator & taxpayer whose voice is going to be heard on this subject whether or not anyone else agrees or disagrees. and it’s not lost on me I have a very unique bully pulpit I get to utilize at 9:15 every morning here on WCLO, and that’s why my friends who get angry with me or disagree with me, can always have their opinion heard as well. Just listen to any podcast and you’ll know that’s true.
Having heard incredibly heart wrenching & sobering tales of economic strife, lost homes, businesses failing or leaving Wisconsin, families breaking up and having to permanently relocate all across the country, it’s not lost on me we’re living in very serious times. It also begs another very important question. Is a seat on the Janesville City Council an appropriate “jumping off point” for a budding professional politician? Last time I checked, Janesville is the home of over 60,000 residents with a decent sized school district along with influential unions, two of the most professionally recognized first responding agencies in the state with our police & fire departments and a transit bus system that serves thousands. I can’t mention all the personnel, maintenance & social services that are part of the equation here, but the City of Janesville is not an insignificant place to manage and more importantly….Lead.
The candidate that has filed papers I pointed out Thursday, Is 25 years old, a recent college grad with no demonstrable leadership experience in business (whether starting, owning, or leading , Hell, I’ll even take having worked for a business!). That means knowing how to hire, fire, schedule, budget, inventory, and negotiate with unions & employees. There is no other obvious “real world” “real life” experience indicated either. A background in either military or civil services is something that would certainly get my interest going. There are no other displayed skills or abilities from this potential candidate that would garner any attention from me at all.
The days of a 25 year old candidate who has simply worked on the campaign of an extreme left liberal politician & worked a short time for a politician out in DC, allows him or her to walk into the Janesville City Council and hold dominion over the taxpayer dollars of people who have worked and lived here a lifetime, watching their City go through one of its worst economic moments in history, I pray to God are over. A seat on the Janesville City Council is not a silly little position to start your political learning curve.
It is in the best interest of all City Councils, School and County Boards to not loose site of who you work for and the changes that we made in executive management last election day. Now it’s time to take a look at our organizational chart again. We must analyze, assess and evaluate our middle management team and see how effective they are in allocating, utilizing and applying their resources & personnel. (That was just a couple of lines of kooky business talk)….In other words, How are local politicians spending and or wasting our money?
After the emotional reaction Thursday to the point I was trying to make, Rosie Stricker asked the most logical question. If a potential 25 year old candidate had the same resume (or lack thereof) as the liberal young man, only in conservative circles, would you still have the same reservations?
The shortest possible answer?.....Your damn right I would.
Let them go look for a job in this economy, find one, achieve some success, advance into management & leadership positions, then lead your people.
That’s the real world experience I’m looking for.