In his article on this week's Sierra Madre City Council reorganization entitled "John Buchanan Becomes Mayor Of Sierra Madre During Reorganization" (which can be found on The Weekly's sparsely visited website by clicking here), Terry quotes the new Mayor this way:
"There's but one reason for anyone should seek and hold office ... that is to do good," Buchanan said. "Being a council member or mayor ... is a chance to do good," he said.
And that is pretty much it. Usually when you're writing a feature article about a new Mayor you'd probably want to reflect a bit on that person's previous record in office, and the probable path this new executive leader might take on such burning local questions as bonds, debt, taxes, city services, planning, development, disaster preparedness, salaries and pensions. You know, the kind of information dutiful citizens care about and might want to read up on should such information be made available.
But we don't get any of that from Mr. Miller. Perhaps Terry made the reasonably safe assumption that anyone reading The Sierra Madre Weekly in the mistaken belief that they are getting actual news probably wouldn't understand these kinds of concepts, anyway? Of course, it is also possible that Mr. Miller doesn't quite have a handle on that stuff himself, and therefore couldn't begin to write about such issues even if he tried.
However, while Terry may have few things to say about the new Mayor and his policies, he does go on for most of the article about the Sierra Madre Tattler. Unfortunately, the things he does cite from this blog are not quite properly transcribed. Which you'd think, a blog being a sitting target and all, he might have been able to do. But apparently that is not the case.
Harsh critics of Buchanan and Mosca, like local blogger John Crawford, attacked Mayor Buchanan who Crawford claims, "gave a big push for large expansive government last evening ..."
The actual quote, "John Buchanan gave a big push for large expensive government last evening," having a decidedly different meaning than the one Mr. Miller was attempting to come to grips with in his article. And unless Terry was writing with a southern accent, the only thing expansive about this misappropriation was the liberties Terry took with someone else's words.
Here is another quote that Terry badly butchers:
" ... and also said Joe Mosca fans who put him "into power a year ago didn't bother to show up tonight. Maybe they stayed home so they could watch the cable news coverage of the impending royal wedding. Or perhaps they were just getting drunk.
To put things back into their proper context, here is the actual quote:
The first thing that jumped about about this evening's "City Council Reorganization" meeting was just how sparsely attended it was. The room was perhaps one-third full. There was little in the way of that celebratory atmosphere you usually find when one popular official takes his bows while his successor ascends to that seat of ultimate municipal power. The angry and vindictive mob that ushered Joe Mosca into power a year ago didn't bother to show up tonight. Maybe they stayed home so they could watch the cable news coverage of the impending royal wedding. Or perhaps they were just out getting drunk.
If you're going to quote from such finely crafted prose, you should at least have the decency to not take portions of it out of context. I'm not certain why Terry is embarrassed by the "angry and vindictive mob" part, though. Maybe it is because he played such a prominent role in that evening's debauch? The 2010 City Council reorganization being one of the ugliest ever in this City's 100 and some odd year history. And if you don't believe that to be true, head on over to the Neuroblast site and review Hail Hamilton's speech that evening (click here).
Of course, as a former contributor to the old Sierra Madre Cumquat blog, Terry does have prior experience not just in being angry and vindictive, but also in the anonymous creation of salacious material that just isn't fit for the eyes of most decent citizens. Perhaps his problem with The Tattler stems from its ability to succeed in presenting to the public a reasonable and fastidious news site? Something Mr. Miller did not see fit to do back in 2007 when he played an active role in Jim Snider's dark dream?
Here is how Pulitizer Prize winning Los Angeles Times columnist Steve Lopez described the Cumquat experience in a 2007 column entitled "Sierra Madre fears for its treasure."
Another blogger, known as the Sierra Madre Cumquat, reported -- in one of the lamest stabs at satire I've seen in a while -- that Councilman ***** had opened a gay bathhouse for young men, superimposing his photo over what looked like a gay orgy. The same website made up a story that pornographic images of (Measure) V supporter ***** had been released on YouTube ... When I told ***** that DowntownDirt.org didn't appear to be as satirical as other sites and instead seemed devoted to jabbing the Observer, she scoffed. DowntownDirt has a space devoted to "lively, spirited and civilized debate," on which a February entry by "Cumquat" asked "how long it's been" since ***** "had an orgasm."
Of course, not everyone was as critical of The Cumquat as Steve Lopez. In a January of 2007 Pasadena Star News article entitled, "Blog makes Sierra Madre politics a laughing matter," staff writer Molly Okeon had these revelations to share:
Since its inception, The Cumquat has "spread like wildfire," Snider said, garnering about 200 hits a day. He is now seeking advertisers, and has sold 50 Cumquat t-shirts. Snider said the response he's received from the site is "overwhelmingly positive," although he's sure he's ruffled some feathers.
Even Sierra Madre Mayor John Buchanan answered Snider's online request for an interview, producing a piece that Buchanan called "light-hearted and fun."
Buchanan was a fan of the site even before he was chosen as a subject of one of its posts. He said a political environment like Sierra Madre's, where "substantial tension" exists, is exactly where Web sites like the Cumquat can flourish. "They provide a kind of comic relief that all human beings need to cope with life on a day-to-day basis," Buchanan said. "A little humor and a little poking fun is good for politicians so we can maintain a perspective."
Obviously John Buchanan and Terry Miller go back for a bit. And now that Mayor Buchanan has returned to the center seat, perhaps we can look forward to more of the same?
Should be quite a year. Do gooding and all.