• Roger Butow

    “Never mistake activity for achievement.”

    Coach John Wooden

    I agree somewhat with DZ on this: Activism shouldn’t be construed as successful action.

    Ex.: Losing 90% of the time to developers is the reality in OC. They have incredibly deep pockets, time to use their funds to lobby, to get into ex parties with decision makers and their staff that result in flaccid review rubber-stamping.

    Activists are NOT well-funded, mostly composed of volunteers, every project that has any reasonably sized footprint is David vs. Goliath…except David winning is a fairy tale, a myth created to inspire but NOT the way life actually works.

    This is especially true in the areas I know best and work within: Coastal/near coastal cities. San Clemente, Dana Point, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, Huntington Beach? Their councils have ALL sold their souls & former quality of life to Big $$$. Only a naive person could believe that campaign coffers aren’t stuffed by commercial, special interest groups.

    It’s noble and inspiring to say/write: “We are the government.” But in fact MONEY buys that governance and leadership without conscience. From city councils, water/sanitation districts right up to the POTUS, America has been FOR SALE for quite some time.

    “Politics: A strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles. The conduct of public affairs for private advantage.” Ambrose Bierce

  • David Zenger

    Sorry to sound cynical but it isn’t public activism that is stirring things up, it’s the fact that the County’s manifest shortcomings in almost every facet of their operations are coming under scrutiny by the Voice of OC.

    And I would be sure to make the distinction between public bloviations by our BoS and any meaningful accomplishment.

    Norberto & Co.: assess them by what they do, not what they say.

  • Paul Lucas

    Hear hear. Nice work Norberto. Blogs and online local news sources have had a heavy hand in this new engagement of citizens. The VOC professionalized that.

  • Jasenn Zaejian

    High sounding rhetoric is one thing. That is a far cry from putting policies for the public good into practice

    • David Zenger

      Right. The spotlight forces the PR mode into high gear. Once the light goes off it’s right back to business as usual. Remember Spitzer’s big fuss about the Form 700 filers? Dropped once, and now seemingly forgotten.