Thursday, April 12, 2007

When is a Debate a Debate?

One commenter challenges the comparison of Stone's debate scheduled for tonight and Dolar's debate held at the Boone School. I won't argue that the analogy is exact, but I do think there is an important comparison.

If I understand correctly, and I know my readers will correct me if I'm wrong, the Boone School debate was sponsored by a group in which Naisy Dolar was a member, and whose referendum she was not only an active participant but devoted campaign resources to in November. I am told that its members are heavily involved in the Dolar campaign. If true, the sponsor could in no way be seen as a neutral party.

Nor can they be seen as the only non-political stakeholder in the community. Stone's collection of sponsors can lay equal claim to that, and certainly have been in the neighborhood longer.

I won't pretend that the Stone debate is any more neutral, merely that neither debate can be viewed as sponsored by an impartial or independent third party. I might even question whether any neutral or impartial parties exist in the 50th Ward. So why should one debate be preferred over the other? The only reason that I can see is that if you support Naisy Dolar, you prefer the Boone School debate. If you support Ald. Stone, you prefer tonight's debate. In trying to be fair, I see no reason to favor one over the other. Neither met the impartial criteria I would have thought necessary.

I don't think the Chicago Tonight appearance can be given equal weight to these two debates held in the neighborhood. It was only six minutes long, and probably had the same viewership as our CANTV-wannabe.

Fairness requires that we set aside the claims of partiality or impartiality here. Both sides have acted in their own interests. Both sides set up their own debates under favorable circumstances. Both sides have sought to skewer the other for not showing up.

But only one side could afford to pass on these debates. Ald. Stone has been the alderman, is well-known to the community, and voters feel they have a good idea what he will (and will not) do. The next four years under Ald. Stone will look basically like the last four years. One side of the ward can expect exceptional city services while the other side of the ward will complain about the lack of the same. Stone's office will remain dysfunctional. He will continue to embarrass us and endure health problems. But many of my neighbors feel he's "our Berny." Warm fuzzies all around, I suppose.

The question then, at least for most voters, is what will Dolar do? And one conclusion that you can draw today is that she won't show up when she's asked. Unless she wants to. Dolar supporters think that sounds harsh. Maybe, but I thought I was to expect more.

Naisy Dolar and her campaign is the one that set up this expectation. They've condemned Ald. Stone's leadership as inadequate, something I agree with. They've offered Dolar as an alternative, even saying that she has demonstrated effective leadership in the past (such as in the 24 hour parking meter "removal").

Ask yourself this question: Did Naisy Dolar demonstrate leadership with her decision about tonight's debate? Dolar claims leadership when the solution was easy for her. But governing the 50th Ward can't be easy, with all the competing interests involved. So the question really is, Is Naisy Dolar up for this job?

Tonight was an opportunity to find out. Was it a trap? Of course it was. But a strong candidate, one who was an effective leader, could have walked into the Lions Den and won over the voters. Dolar denied herself the opportunity to prove that she was an effective leader. She denied the voters the only opportunity to take their own measure of the two candidates side-by-side.

Many voters, but especially those who weren't inclined towards either of these two candidates, look at Character as a decisive factor. I know I do. I look at Berny Stone's character and find it wanting. But I can't really get a handle on Naisy Dolar's character. She's been very erratic, flits from one thing to another. She seems easily persuaded by outside forces. She has no focus. This was an opportunity to show her mettle. It's an opportunity that she declined.

My heart tells me that no one could be worse than Berny Stone as alderman. My head is not so sure. Naisy Dolar hasn't made it easier to vote for her.

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31 Comments:

At April 12, 2007 9:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

At this point, only the votes matter. I am confident that most of the attendees of tonight's debate will all be Berny supporters. Strategically, it would be dumb to try to persuade voters who most likely already voted for Stone.

Naisy Dolar should spend her time door knocking.

 
At April 12, 2007 9:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Henry Kissinger was once asked why college faculty political infighting was so much more fierce than that which went on in Congress and he responded, "because the stakes are so much lower."

Frankly, I will be happy when this whole silly thing is over. After all, this is for a seat to represent just one tiny spit of acreage, in one city in one of 50 states before a rubber stamp parliament.

Wednesday, April 18th will bring happy relief from this madness.

 
At April 12, 2007 10:02 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

> Naisy Dolar should spend her time door
> knocking.
>

I agree. Everyone's mind is made up by now, and now, getting out the votes will decide the election.

> this is for a seat to represent just one tiny
> spit of acreage, in one city in one of 50
> states before a rubber stamp parliament.
>
But it's MY own little postage stamp of native soil ;-)

 
At April 12, 2007 10:20 AM, Anonymous Naisy should go... said...

I agree that Naisy absolutely should show up to the debate, no matter if Berny set the whole thing up to work in his favor or not. She's a tough little broad and I'm sure she can handle it! If she is elected alderman she will be faced with many contentious, uncomfortable and politically damaging situations. It says a lot that she is willing to walk away from this event.

Naisy can win but she needs to show courage and not waver under pressure. This time I suppose it's her advisors telling her not to participate in this event. It's a mistake.

 
At April 12, 2007 11:01 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jay,

I agree with you pretty much on everything relating to this issue. Dolar is dangerous because she is not what she appears to be. At least with Stone, you get what you see.

Since invited by the Dolar website to visit the "west rogers park" yahoo group, I spent some time reading it. I'd never heard of it before and will be sending more observations. It was very informative. Perhaps if the Dolar people had taken the time to read it, they wouldn't have linked it:

Here's what I found:

--There is a Naisy Dolar yahoogroup! I'd love to read those comments--and perhaps they should be made public since she is running for public office? But, when I hit the link, I was forbidden entry: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NeighborsForND/

--There is a long impassioned debate about WRPCO this organization that was supposed to sponsor the debate on March 21st. Here's a snippet. I think it's okay to copy it since they seem to be so adament about being a public forum. You can go the site and look around for the other discussion on this. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/wrogerspk/message/1162

Bottom line, it is obvious from the discussion that this group was filled with Dolar supporters and were inflexible about the format:

RE: [wrogerspk] An Open Letter to Greg Brewer

Alan,

Since I've spent some time working on this forum, could you help me out here by being specific about the aspects of the format that you consider to be unfair? It appears to me on the surface that the format if anything favors Greg, because it asks for careful answers to issues on which he is very strong.

Steve Andrews
-----Original Message-----
From: wrogerspk@yahoogroups.com [mailto:wrogerspk@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of snow bored
Sent: Saturday, January 27, 2007 4:34 PM
To: wrogerspk@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [wrogerspk] An Open Letter to Greg Brewer

On Sat, 27 Jan 2007 22:04:39 -0000, lramyk wrote:
>
> The West Rogers Park Community Organization is hosting a Candidates'
> Forum on Wednesday, February 7, starting at 7:30 p.m. At a meeting
> earlier this week, I learned that your campaign manager has decided
> that you will not participate--though you had previously indicated
> that you would.

this is untrue. greg never indicated that he
would participate. he told people that we were
working on it. greg was willing to participate,
as long as i determined that this forum would
be fair and neutral.

> Apparently Alan believes that WRPCO is endorsing
> Naisy Dolar's campaign.

also untrue. what really bothers me about trying
to deal with the wrpco is that there doesn't seem
to be a way to agree on basic facts. i never said
i thought that wrpco was endorsing naisy. however,
i am not surprised that you were told this.

i have chosen to keep greg out of this debate
because chris brown was unwilling to alter the
format to make it acceptable to me. obviously,
if the format was fair and neutral then greg
would be there. it is too bad that you are
spending your time trying to pressure me, when
all you have to do is call chris brown, who told
me to take his format -- or leave it. take it
or leave it, does that sound fair to you? it
didn't to me.

this campaign accepts that you will be having
a candidates forum with naisy and salman. it
sounds like fun. as i've mentioned repeatedly,
we have to spend our time trying to beat bernie
stone. the difficulties that have emerged in
this particular episode can be dealt with
*after* the eleciton. good luck with your
forum...

ac

 
At April 12, 2007 11:36 AM, Anonymous p.t. baer said...

Whatever its format or outcome, this debate would have had little influence on voters. This discussion does, however, illustrate the root of voter ambivalence towards Naisy. She's the only candidate we've got, but we're still not convinced. We want her to prove herself. We want her to show some leadership. We want her to give us a reason to vote.

I've had conversations with friends and strangers alike who don't like Stone, but aren't comfortable with Naisy. "He's no good. She's no good. What's the difference", they say. These are the undecideds Naisy needs to worry about. They're not trying to decide between Naisy and Stone. They're trying to decide whether it's worth voting.

It it too late to give them an answer? I don't know, but now there's one less opportunity to try.

 
At April 12, 2007 12:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

what is all this stuff about Dolar's size? She is referred to as a "little broad" here and she refers to herself as a "petite" asian-american woman--WHY? Who cares?

 
At April 12, 2007 1:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dolar would be a fool to walk into such a s---storm tonight. Only a bunch of Stone supporting idiots are going to show up, anyway. Total waste of her time. Go Naisy!

 
At April 12, 2007 1:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jay, I hope you'll get out there and let people in your community know that good leadership is more important than birds of a feather sticking together. This ward is a mess and it can only get worse with Stone and company in charge. May the best woman win, regardless of her gender, race, or religion.

 
At April 12, 2007 1:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Dolar camp must be reading this blog because they've now put a rather lengthy attempt to justify her not showing up tonight. (sure would be interesting to read the naisy dolar yahoo group!). Running scared obviously --and what's with all the adjectives? True cowardice, shams etc speaks for itself--not necessary to keep using the words over and over again.

Seems that all that energy could have been directed at helping the candidate prepare for a debate . . .

Let's face it, if she wanted to debate, there was a two-week interval to work out the details. They still haven't explained the gap between Moses' March 18th invitation and the very untimely March 31st response. Is this how quickly Alderman Dolar and crew would respond????

 
At April 12, 2007 2:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Dolar would be a fool to walk into such a s---storm tonight.
And all you dolar supporters expected Stone to walk into Boone which was a setup with one Group (Dolar's)You all suk
Dolar is scared she wont know the answers being she didnt have the questions a week in advance.

 
At April 12, 2007 2:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The Dolar camp ... put a rather lengthy attempt to justify her not showing up tonight."

Too bad Naisy didn't speak for herself on this issue instead of leaving it to Marissa.

 
At April 12, 2007 2:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Frankly, I will be happy when this whole silly thing is over."

So do yourself a favor and stop reading and posting. Just pretend it's over.

 
At April 12, 2007 3:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Too bad Naisy didn't speak for herself on this issue instead of leaving it to Marissa."

Too bad Marissa can't debate for Naisy.

 
At April 12, 2007 5:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dolar is dangerous because she is not what she appears to be. At least with Stone, you get what you see. This is so true !!
The next problem is you never see Naisy's husband Ben. She has to hide him. He is a time bomb. There are stories out there that would curl your hair. He is also a racist.

 
At April 12, 2007 5:53 PM, Anonymous morris' meglomania said...

well Henry Morris has done it. The electronic meglamaniac has now stopped anyone but his HAND-SELECTED SECRET SOCIETY to even see the posts on his "OPEN COMMUNITY FORUM". How could he deny us the comedy of his Anti-Stone FREAK SHOW starring everyones's most HATED poster,HUGH! and co-starring such liars as rich,robin,leslie,wd50mom,rockyfields,and the always disgusting anastasia.NOW WATCH,HENRY will make his"members" take a SECRET OATH.

 
At April 12, 2007 7:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

> The next problem is you never see Naisy's
> husband Ben. She has to hide him. He is a
> time bomb. There are stories out there that
> would curl your hair. He is also a racist.
>
Stories that would curl my hair? Do tell -- IF you have anything verifiable to tell, that is. It would save me a trip to the hair salon.

 
At April 12, 2007 8:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh no . . . the West Rogers Park chat group--bastion of "free speech" is now closed to the public? That is hilarious given all the rhetoric earlier in the week! Very funny.

 
At April 12, 2007 8:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey you guys, this stuff about Naisy's husband is pretty nasty and detracts from your credibility. Let's cool it--okay? They are doing a good enough job on their own of making themselves look bad.

 
At April 12, 2007 9:45 PM, Anonymous Neighbors for ND Yahoogroup said...

There is a Naisy Dolar yahoogroup! I'd love to read those comments--and perhaps they should be made public since she is running for public office? But, when I hit the link, I was forbidden entry: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NeighborsForND/

>>I remember the yahoogroup was used in the beginning of the campaign before its current email marketing program. It was closed down to make the switch to the new program and I don't think it was meant to hide anything from the public. The emails back then only stated when events were; there were no discussions at all.

 
At April 12, 2007 9:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY HUGH!!!!! You've been quiet today. Enjoy.

 
At April 12, 2007 9:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

People missed Naisy at the Debate.
She should have shown up. Her supporters were there. It showed she could not answer questions in a split second from the audience. The Phil Ponce show was 1 person with a few simple questions, which some she was stumped on.

 
At April 12, 2007 10:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is it possible Hugh celebrated by PAINTING and MAINTAINING his property?NAAH!!

 
At April 12, 2007 10:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There was no debate.
"NO show NAISY"
Stone answered all questions asked.
Where in the world was Naisy??
Maybe at eating dinner at Whats Cooking, making her next U Tube!!

 
At April 12, 2007 10:35 PM, Anonymous YELLOW FOR COWARDICE said...

Dolar once again showed how unqualified she isto hold public office.Nasty Naisy was a NO-SHOW for tonight's DEBATE,but she did send her YELLOW-HATTED STORMTROOPERS TO HARASS THOSE ATTENDING.YELLOW IS APPROPRIATE FOR THE COWARDLY Naisy !

 
At April 12, 2007 11:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What happened at the event tonight? Can someone describe what happened at the non-debate?

 
At April 13, 2007 12:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A couple of things
1)Boone VS last night’s debate, Boone had Pre written questions for Both candidates and had a week to study and prepare for a answer, unlike last night where the people attending could raise their hand and ask a question. People were cheated out by Naisy not showing..

2)Did Naisy Dolar demonstrate leadership with her decision not to debate? I don’t think by her campaign manager making her decision is leadership.

3)Is Naisy Dolar up for this job? Does not seem like it..

4)Was it a trap? Didn’t seem to be., Naisy talks about all her support she should have packed the room with all her support no setup. Both candidates could have answered questions, and it wouldn’t have been one sided.

5)This was an opportunity to show the people what she will do and how she could handel herself. She's seems very erratic, and easily persuaded with no focus with the job at hand. The job being serving the people.answering their questions. We the people lost out last night.

 
At April 13, 2007 9:04 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

why didn't the alderman accept the alternative dates offered by the tv station? It didn't have to be duringthe holiday week.

 
At April 13, 2007 9:22 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
What happened at the event tonight? Can someone describe what happened at the non-debate?

Yea DAISY did NOT show. She disappointed people. Did I answer your question? Dolar did not answer mine last night, she was a NO SHOW !! Stone took all questions from the audience and answered them, even from the yellow hat people. I’m sure they reported to naisy.

 
At April 13, 2007 10:25 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Naisy's reponse to any question would be:

For example: How would you solve the parking problem on Devon, Ms. Dolar:

"I would assemble a team to study the problem. It would be inclusive."

But how would you solve it?

"I want everyone to be part of the process and solution"

But what is your plan?

"Well, I would have to hear from everyone from my team--including those really smart people from the West Rogers Park yahoogroup, but I think I would put in those boxes they have downtown."

But how does that solve the problem Ms. Dolar . .. .does that add spaces?

"Well, I'm sure my team would figure it out. Alderman Stone has been so corrupt and mean, that I really don't have the information to come up with that answer."

What information do you need Ms. Dolar?

"Look, we are tenacious and we have guts and I'm little and cute and a petite asian woman and I went to Decatur, so trust me . . "

I could keep this up all day but gotta get back to work.

 
At April 16, 2007 3:53 PM, Blogger Hugh said...

Bernard "Anytime, Anyplace, Anywhere" Stone Declines Yet Another Opportunity

When [Jeff] Berkowitz [Show Host/Producer of "Public Affairs"] invited Stone, recently, to come back on Public Affairs, but this time to make it a joint appearance with his opponent, Naisy Dolar, Ald. Stone declined. Not very sporting and not very good for democracy.

 

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