Pushing Buttons

I have to say I’m kind of liking this sitting at home and watching the Wylie City Council meetings on my telly.  I could get used to this, especially since I can mute the horse and pony show during the first 30 minutes of the thing.   I always cringed watching Mayor Eric Media Hogue smile for the camera.  There should be some sort of law limiting how many times a city official can appear in the newspaper, because I have to say his standard weekly photo should be criminal.  Talk about taking vanity straight to bordering on absolute narcissism. 

Imagine my surprise when I got home from work and found that the live stream was nowhere to be found.  I pulled up my trusty agenda packet online (because I didn’t get an email over the weekend announcing their meeting like I am supposed to, as those seem to be hit or miss lately) and took a look at the topics du jour.  I have to say there isn’t much of any substance on the agenda this evening.  Oh sure, Red will have his kiss and cry party and we get to be reminded of all that he has done for Wylie.  It should be no surprise I’m not on the Red Happy Camper List so my absence is probably a total relief to him. 

To wrap the evening up there will be a droning on of Robert Diaz over the fees that Parks and Rec recommends charged to citizens for the use of our parks, the Bart Peddicord, and the Rec Center.  This is just the fluff used to fill in between the real meetings where the real fun and games reside, such as the budget meetings and some of those Code of Ethics work sessions.  No fun was to be had tonight, as the cameras were presumably rolling but nothing was playing live.

Just think.  This time two weeks from now, the agenda will be sporting the party for the newbies elected to the council.  Will Bennie make the grade?  Will Gilbert get a chance?  My money is on Bennie.  For the other seat, will Catherine or Nathan be elected?  This one is a little more difficult to predict and here’s why.

Back in the day, Catherine Butschek pissed off some of the Good Old Boys in Wylie.  She was outspoken against the practices of Mayor John Mondy.  Now whether you think Mondy did a good turn for Wylie or not probably depends on which side of the 8-10 year mark you are as a citizen and which side of the political fence you sit on.  Those old-timers who have been around Wylie for 8-10 years or longer and who are a little liberal in the loafers seem to really dig Mondy.  As a mayoral dude, he was pretty righteous.  Yet, there are a couple teensy little gaffs that caused not only the old time conservatives to dislike him, but also the newby conservatives who have been here about 10 years or less.

I’ve been here 11 years but I’m a conservative and have less of an appreciation for all things liberal and spendy-pants.  As I see it, Mayor Mondy rocked as a mayor and rocks as an individual, but he was also the mayor seated when all the deals were done that brought this boring sea of grey roofs sitting atop vanilla homes crammed on postage-sized lots.  The question is, do I like him more than our current mayor?  Well hells to the yes.  I like him more despite the gaffs because our current mayor behaves like an overly chatty and catty school girl.  At least with Mondy, what you see is what you get and I love the no-drama, no-nonsense style.  I love the anonymity he tries to carry with him.  I love that he tells people to call him simply, “John.”  What a guy.  THAT commands respect.  Someone calling a friend of mine asking if I am religious or not in order to determine if I am of the ‘forgive and forget’ mindset and to see if there is some way to shut me up, commands a Befuddled award. 

Gaff number one by Mayor Mondy is really the letter he wrote on City of Wylie letterhead asking for leniency in the sentencing phase of a convicted child molester.  Inexcusable and irrefutable as a major faux pas.    One that is perhaps more subjective is the type of homes and buildings we have here in Wylie.  I realize a certain amount of building a new community brought cheap homes and that was to be expected.  This is pretty standard practice in most up and coming communities, but nicer developments usually come a little later too.  So I view Mondy’s gaff number two to be that Wylie doesn’t have much to speak of in the way of those nicer neighborhoods.  It seems that Sachse and Murphy gobbled up those home builders.  Gaff three is that Mondy was there when the Wal-Mart deal was done and also all these ugly metal buildings you see all over town but I guess I can forgive him for that because Wal-Mart brought in  some tax revenue and all was to be forgiven and the ugly metal buildings could be overlooked, sort of. 

Conversely, people think that Mayor Eric Hogue had something to do with getting the Target development on 544, alas it was Mondy who was seated at the time when that commercial development was started or at least if memory serves me correctly, he was there when the Target deal was conceived.  In my book, that was one of the best things Mondy had his hands in and for that I forgive him all his past transgressions.  Still, I am a tad angry about the low-cost housing sprawling all over Wylie.

If you are not a fan of the sea of low cost housing that exists in Wylie, Mondy is only partly your man.  There are those who served with him such as Earl Newsom, Rick White, Carter Porter, Red Byboth, Eric Hogue, and Merrill Young.    Wow, now there’s an A-List of Good Old Boys.  Think about it, back in the day these boobs voted to approve just about any piece of metal garbage someone wanted to erect.  Flash forward to today.  These same boobs who wreaked havoc upon our city back then are still, for the most part, in charge quite literally or have their hands in behind the scenes.

Mr. Newsom is not on council but he’s all over the Wylie View spewing his old Wylie worldliness to the bow and scrape crowd.  Carter Porter is licking his wounds still after being unseated by the outspoken conservative Diane Culver last year.  He has given cash to the two flaming liberals running for City Council right now, Gilbert Tamez and Nathan Scott.  Porter is best known and endeared forever to me for his penchant for yelling at Catholic Priests during council meetings and in snotty email responses to citizens.  But he is also known to me for being the sot that wrote a Letter to the Editor that whined in his little boy voice that Councilmembers Culver, Jones, and Goss are feathering their personal nests during their stints as Councilmembers.  Now that does present a bit of a problem, firstly because it is against the charter and State Ethics for them to benefit in the manner Porter accused them benefiting, and secondly because none of them have businesses in Wylie for which to gain any ill-gotten goods.  Goss comes the closest with his wife’s T-Shirt screening company, but I don’t recall the City or their employees buying shirts from them nor do I believe the nest is all that feathered from the venture.  Furthermore Porter stated that they were receiving personal favors.  Now you know how twisted my mind can be and I could have all sorts of fun with that statement, but I will play nice.  I have to wonder what personal favors it is that Culver, Jones, and Goss have received?  Yes, that was true Vegas-style drama queen letter writing stuff coming at us from Carter Porter just about this same time last year after he lost his seat.  Sour grapes is an understatement.

Merril Young, wow, now how do I address this one in a ladylike manner?  I’m sure he is a nice man and all, but he paid $200 for a fake ‘college degree’  from a degree mill, had it back dated to 1970 something and was able to use it to obtain his teaching certificate through our dumb state of Texas and for a teaching position through our even dumber Wylie ISD.  Oh, and he was serving as councilman and refused to step down all the while. He was convicted, fined, and given probation by a court of law.  Guess it takes all kinds and some simply wear their shame better than others.  He wears his brazenly as he is still working in a paraprofessional position with the school district.    I wonder if Nathan Scott gets his tutelage in wearing personal shame freely in public from some sort of secret admiration for what Young did.  Seriously, in Wylie we put the fun in dysfunctional.  I mean, how can you not laugh at the ridiculousness of this stuff.  I couldn’t make it up if I tried.

In a roundabout way I am bringing us back to Catherine Butshek who is running for Wylie City Council and yes, she pissed off some of the good old boys because she ran against their fair-headed angel John Mondy, but as you can see from the examples of their legacy above, they seem to be quite a dysfunctional lot possessing ownership rights on how Wylie became what it is today; a low-income housing community where property values continue to plummet (yes I call going from an average home value of $153K down to $141K in one year a plummet).  Where our police force is missing 16 brothers and sisters, and where our Rec Center loses money every year.  Wylie is a place where dysfunctional candidates call home and they support their dysfunctional brethren.  So you can see why they don’t like Catherine very much and why they are tossing their support behind someone who plays like them.

 In fact, they didn’t like Councilwoman Diane Culver very much either last year when she ran, because they don’t want people to come in that have ideas different than theirs.  Culver made it on Council, so now they really hate Butschek, thus Butschek is taking all of the good old boy ire. 

How does that affect the race?  In the Wylie voting world of 600-700 voters:

Good Old Boys = half of voters
Tea Partiers = half of voters
Winner is decided on by the independents, uneducated walking up to the polls, and the morons.  Sadly, nobody else votes because they are too busy trying to live and they have no idea any of the nonsense that I have written about here has ever taken place.  If they knew, they would vote.

How does this help Scott?  Since Nathan Scott still has no job, he has been up at the polls from morning until night working them, and golly my hat goes off to him for it.  I still personally think he is a piece of excrement because he did not address his past arrest for striking his wife or his past child support issues with me when I interviewed him back in February like a real man should have.  Had the man owned up to his past mistakes with big boy pants on and addressed it in a mature manner, proving he has grown from the experience of his past mistakes, I would have gladly overlooked that.  He did quite the opposite in fact.  He has refused to deal with it publicly, rather his wife wrote a Letter to the Editor taking full responsibility for his arrest in some sick blow by blow of why he couldn’t keep his hands to himself and was arrested for striking her.  This is not a mature man who takes responsibility for his actions and learns from them.  This is a juvenile delinquent who yells at his opponent at the Candidate Forum, yells at his opponent’s supporters, degrades his opponent outside the polls and changes his story about voting in the past and about his platform, as if he somehow miraculously supports a tax decrease now even though his interview with me, interview with the newspaper, and appearance at the forum did not addressed this as part of his platform. 

The question that remains in the Catherine vs. Nathan campaign is whether enough people decided to Google their names and find out who and what they were actually voting for before they pressed that electronic button.