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John Nephew

Maplewood City Council Policy & Politics


WTB Roseville City Council Seats

Last year, as "Garbage Haulers for Citizen Choice" bought themselves two seats on the Maplewood City Council (Bob Cardinal and Marv Koppen), it was odd at first glance -- since most of that group were not even licensed in Maplewood, the one that was had very little business here.  What's more, the key votes were going to be made before any new councilmembers were seated, and there was a likely 3-member council majority to approve organized collection whose terms didn't end until 2014.  But all the election spending in Maplewood of course had less to do with Maplewood than with sending a message to other suburbs -- in particular, next door in Roseville, where the business interests behind this group have a lot more business at stake, and where there's been a notable groundswell of resident interest in and support of organized trash collection.  Given that we estimate Maplewood's plan will save our residents about $1.6 million per year, you can understand that these haulers are willing to spend a fair bit to protect their profits elsewhere.

Sure enough, the GHFCC has been spreading cash around again this year, trying to repeat their Maplewood success by buying a couple of seats on Roseville's city council.  Unlike Maplewood's race, when the spending was focused on mailings on the eve of the November general election, in Roseville they've started throwing their weight around ahead of the primary. From their mailings and candidate financial reports, one can see that the haulers have decided that their candidates are Lisa Laliberte and Bill Hoffman.  In a field of seven candidates for two seats in Tuesday's primary, with the top four advancing from the primary to November's general election, Laliberte came in #1 and Hoffman came in #4.  The top three candidates were fairly close, at 1282 to 1377 votes each, while #4 was a much more distant 860 votes.

I'll be interested to see how this plays out in the general election, and to learn how the candidates not anointed by the haulers' PAC respond and adapt their campaign strategies.

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Correct me if I am wrong, but didn't you accept money from all over the nation for both of your city council campaigns?

I recall you received contributions from states like Illinois and California?

Also cities like Duluth, Stillwater, St. Paul, and South Saint Paul?

Then there was a contribution from AFSCME, the people who are sitting on the opposite side of the labor management negotiating table from where you sit.

Seems like the pot calling the kettle black, along with a serious conflict of interest.

That was just the last election, what about your first run for office? I recall many more out of state contributors.

Maybe I am wrong, but I have the impression that these garbage haulers you are talking about are not living in California or Illinois.

Ooh, ad hominem red herrings! Classic Mayor K!

I'd love to respond in kind, but alas, when you were mayor of Roseville, busily making your city the laughingstock of the metro, I wasn't paying close attention, let alone poring over your own campaign finance reports.

John, why don't you respond to the questions I raised? They are legitimate questions. You took contributions from all over the nation and from people who had business directly before the council. Now you attack others for doing less egregious things than you did?

Criticize all you want about Roseville, but both you and I know that you were never there, and that your comments are based upon second hand information like newspaper articles written by 22 year old college students.

Proverbs 14:15: "Only simpletons believe everything they're told!"

I don't answer them because they are red herrings, John. A red herring, as I hope but can't assume you know, is "a deliberate attempt to divert a process of enquiry by changing the subject" (quoting a Wikipedia page, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_herring_(fallacy)).

Anyone interested in campaign contributions from past campaigns can use the handy search button in the right-hand column to find discussions of them in years past when I was a candidate. My campaign finance reports were also public record. And none of that has squat to do with Roseville.

Your whole post amounted to "Hey, look over there!" Not actually worth a serious response, but thanks for stopping by.

John, you seem to be oblivious to the fact that it was you who decided to inject yourself into Roseville politics. That is why my questions are not red herrings.

If you had minded your own business and I approached you with questions out of the blue, then you would have a point to stand on.

Look up and see who started this blog posting. You invited this upon yourself, just like you invited the citizens opposed to organized collection upon your campaign.

You're a hoot, John Kysylyczyn. Years of commenting on this blog and otherwise "injecting yourself into Maplewood politics" -- and when I happen to comment on Roseville you think that suddenly means that your red herrings and ad hominem arguments are magically turned into logical gold?

Sadly, no. You are the rhetorical equivalent of an angry monkey flinging poo.

LOL... John you are such a funny character.

Let's get back to your original posting. You are attacking some Roseville candidates who have gotten support from garbage haulers right?

These are haulers that serve the Twin Cities, most likely have employees who live in Roseville, owners that live in the Twin Cities, and profits that stay here in the Twin Cities. These are local people.

You are mad that you lost your reelection because these local people put out accurate truthful mailings that pointed out your opposition towards citizen choice.

You imply that it is improper for these people to do this. But how can you say this when you are supported by similar organizations. The DFL and the labor unions which supported you are all local organizations that have employees across the Twin Cities. There is no difference between the two. All of these groups are local.

Why is it fair for someone to get a direct contribution from AFSCME labor union, with all of its conflicts of interest, but unfair if haulers send out a friendly mailing promoting another candidate?

The fact that you took a contribution from people you set salaries and benefits for is very troubling.

I'm proud of my campaign finance reports.

Seems like you have a case of "sore loser".

OK, let's go back to my original posting. It pretty much just states objective facts: what the GHFCC did last year, what they are doing this year, and my comment that "I'll be interested to see how this plays out in the general election, and to learn how the candidates not anointed by the haulers' PAC respond and adapt their campaign strategies."

You react to this blog entry by inferring that I am "attacking some Roseville candidates" (merely by noting who supports them) and that I "imply that it is improper for these people to do this." I'm afraid you are projecting what you want to read into my posting, rather than actually seeing what it says.

After constructing your straw man reading of what my original posting said, you responded by trying to change the subject to attacking me and criticizing contributions to my past Maplewood campaigns. All of which is wasted effort, and can't even knock down straw men -- after all, even if you conclusively prove that it is a pot calling the kettle black, that doesn't change the kettle's color.

If you'd ACTUALLY like to get back to my original posting, you could tell me what you think is factually wrong in it. For example:

- Did the GHFCC not spend money to influence the 2011 Maplewood election?
- Was more than one hauler in GHFCC licensed for residential business in Maplewood?
- Do you believe the haulers in GHFCC are substantially motivated by something other than the protection of their corporate profits, particularly in cities besides Maplewood?
- Is the same hauler PAC not spending money in Roseville's races this year?
- Is the GHFCC not spending money specifically to support Lisa Laliberte and Bill Hoffman?
- Is my information about the primary election results erroneous?

And finally, as a matter of opinion, you could offer your reasons why you perhaps are not interested in the effect of all this on the election and why others should not be either.

Or you could just rant on about the dozens of different individuals and PACs, union and business alike, who supported my campaigns; and call me a "loser" or whatever else you've pulled out to throw around the cage.

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