Thursday, February 24, 2005

Which Side Are You On? Atlanta's? Or Lafayette's?

It was a pretty ugly day for LUS in Judge Byron Hebert's 15th Judicial District Court.

The Advocate has two stories. One on the decision. The other on the Consolidated Government press conference in response to the decision and what may be next.

At blog time (1:30 a.m. or so), The Daily Advertiser had only posted one story on it, this one a wrap up of the decision in the time-honored Gannett style: short and tight.

UPDATE: Later Thursday, The Advertiser posted this story by Claire Taylor on Wednesday's court ruling and the reaction of the direct participants.

As Durel said at his press conference, this was a setback.

It appears that this all could be heading to a public vote. If so, the number of public backers of the project appears to be growing. The Advocate (again!) reports that Lafayette's Democratic Parish Executive Committee has passed a resolution in support of the project and that their Republican counter-parts will consider a similar resolution which was introduced at their meeting on Wednesday. This comes on the heels of The Advertiser's strong editorial series in support of the LUS effort earlier this week.

Oddly, the Lafayette Chamber remains sidelined at this point, although efforts reportedly continue to move the organization off the fence and into the fray — hopefully, on the side of cheaper bandwidth for the community (and you know there's only one place that will come from — LUS). The issue is, apparently, money: having lost BellSouth as a member several years ago over the Chamber's support of the LUS fiber loop plan, the Chamber can ill afford (literally) to lose Cox as a member. So, the delicate organizational dance continues. It may look necessary from the inside, but it is taking on near Nero-ian (fiddling while Rome burns) proportions from the outside.

In every endeavor, there is an ebb and flow of events. Yesterday, things broke against those of us who favor the LUS plan (maybe the Sock Puppets of the Incumbents will finally have the courage to admit that they are fundamentally opposed to the plan, that the idea of a vote is merely a possible path to killing the plan). But, the fight is far from over; in fact, it is now on in earnest.

The prospect of a contested election is no longer a hypothetical. The question now becomes: Which side are you on?

The ability of this city and parish to assert control over its own economic destiny hangs in the balance. It is no longer possible to excuse yourself from the debate.

The question is on the table. The future is at stake. It's time to declare your allegiance. Which side are you on? Atlanta's? Or, Lafayette's?

19 comments:

Neal Breakfield said...

John:

"The ability of this city and parish to assert control over its own economic destiny hangs in the balance."

Is that what you said? Do you really feel that the City-Parish Government must have control over the economic destiny of the community? Correct me if I am wrong, but when you speak of control, you must mean governmental control. Can you please answer that simple question in 100 words or less?

John said...

Neal,

You are simply astonishing. I have been trying to get you to engage a real question for weeks while you threw sissy tantrums on our pages. And you have the nerve to try and demand a question of me.

Astonishing on a second level as well: you can't read our posts any better than you read your research. I didn't write this post. (Though I agree with every word.)

GumboFilé said...

I'm astonished by the presumption and arrogance of those who refuse to concede that for many this disagreement is based on principle. Y'all act as if you have a monopoly on truth and virtue.

baycock said...

O.K. Mike,

I am fundamentally against the current fiber plan. Now that the first item on my priority list seems to be a done deal, I will cross it out and move to the to the next item on the list. Defeating the bond issue as we now understand it.

I intend to keep crossing off items on my priority list until I get to the last item. Campaigning against and defeating Joey Durel and Marc Mouton.

I would argue that if we are the “Sock Puppets for the Incumbents”, that must lead reasonable thinking people to conclude that you and your fellow pro-fiber brothers are the Sock Puppets Durel, Huval and LUS.
Welcome to the SOCK DRAWER!

Anonymous said...

Man - they win one battle and they become even more angry. What gives with that?

GumboFilé said...

It's not anger, it's resolve. It's a byproduct of a righteous cause provoked by an arrogant opponent.

ricky said...

Hey folks, keep up the great work here. Didn't know if you saw this yet, but the LUS screw by the courts got some national press today.

As for this "disagreement on principle" business. What about the many businesses that see the city's initiative as fundamental to their growth? Is there ever a point where the government should begin to provide services that private corporations either refuse to or are incapable of providing themselves? That's the real question here. BellSouth and Cox are stifling the economic growth of our city. Should a multi-billion dollar and multi-million dollar corporation be able to control the economic destiny of Lafayette? Is that the principle you believe in? That two giant corporations who care about Lafayette only as long as they have complete control over the market for cable, Internet, and phone should have so much control on the decisions of the city, or should it be the people we actually elected to lead us? Your principles are with unelected corporate bosses and not with democratically chosen civic leaders.

As far as I'm concerned you can take those principles and sell them to some other rube in some other town. You can let Cox and another bell run your little corporate, principled utopia and enjoy your exorbitant rates, your poor service, your swift-as-a-glacier incremental upgrades. Enjoy that and your principles while I'm sitting in Girard Park, enjoying a gorgeous spring day and chatting with my brother in another city on my laptop. Enjoy it. It sounds like a real dream.

Captain Fantastic said...

The unfortunate result of the efforts of 411-ers, bellsouth and cox is that while they claim their efforts are civic-minded, the end result is that no one wins but bellsouth and cox.

It seems your major concern is not that the technology is bad, but that the program might fail. How about concentrating your efforts on supporting the program so it doesn't fail rather than creating uncertainty in the minds of those who arent as 'well-read' as some of you.

411's efforts will cause one of the following results:
1) A vote doesnt take place b/c only a pathetic 5% signed that petition. However, enough citizens are disheartened about the fiber plan and choose not to buy into it... thus it fails.
2) A vote does take place and fiber wins out. However, see the results of #1...
3) A vote does take place and fiber looses out. Congratulations, we're at status quo, in a one-horse town with lame copper service, terrible customer service and our two wonderful 'civic minded' companies, Cox and Bellsouth walking away from the situation with the 411'ers wondering what happened to the happy-go-lucky cox commercials...

There's still time to change all of this though guys and gals. How about showing some civic spirit and congratulating our city-parish president and the council for having the gumption to try to catapult Lafayette far and beyond the kinda-cool town that it is now to the uber-cool town that it can be. We'll no longer be known as a nice place to stop by for a good meal and good traditions... we'll be a world-class community where major corporations will want to relocate to because of a good meal, good traditions, and some of the best technology that money can buy.

GumboFilé said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
GumboFilé said...

You sound like a spoiled child who can't have everything he wants, just the way he wants it, right now. You wish to force your neighbors to assume a risk so you can have what you want.

Actually y'all should be happy. We're now in a no-win situation. If the LCG wins the vote and this succeeds beyond everybodies expectation, then we were foolish obstructionists. If the LCG wins the vote but then fails to deliver on it's promises, then it's our fault for causing delays and discouraging subscriptions. If the LCG loses the vote, you'll be able to blame us for everything bad for years to come.

Neal Breakfield said...

Okay Mohn St. Jagg...

Does SOMEBODY WANT TO TACKLE THIS ONE? Here it is again:

--------------------------------
"The ability of this city and parish to assert control over its own economic destiny hangs in the balance."

Is that what you said? Do you really feel that the City-Parish Government must have control over the economic destiny of the community? Correct me if I am wrong, but when you speak of control, you must mean governmental control. Can you please answer that simple question in 100 words or less?
--------------------------------

You know, I have never met you and I feel no personal animosity toward you. Either of you. Or is it both of one? I'm confused...

Anyway, this is your forum and you may conduct in it any way that you see fit.

Isn't freedom GREAT?

John said...

Neal,

I agree that its funny that you have a hard time keeping track of who you are talking to--and what people have actually said.Some people caught in a mistake like that would admit it. And some people try and pass it off as a joke.

Here's the deal. You blow in and spam this site with identical comments splattered all over the blog as if you are pretty comfortable with the method. its rude. I'm offended. And worse: it is an abuse of the commenting function to muck up their real use as avenues of conversation.

Then you come along and want to pretend to be the victim because people who you can't be bothered to identify correctly don't respond to you demands. It won't work with grownups. Here is the sort of thing that does work: Apologize for spamming the site and then work to regain some respect by actually answering questions addressed to you.

You'll find me more than willing to talk in that event.

Captain Fantastic said...

Gumbo, I'm sorry that you think I sound like a spoiled child... and i think it's unfortunate that you have to result to name calling in an attempt to get your point across... who sounds like the spoiled child now.

Captain Fantastic said...

Neal,
I agree with John that the city/parish government... and all governments should have control over their economic destinies. Why wouldn't you want that? If they dont have control over it, who then? You know that LEDA is funded via taxes and they do a hell of a job building incentive packages to get companies to move here to create jobs, etc. It's the job of the government to empower us to be as successful as we possibly can (i.e. give us ftth)... but in that same token, the city/parish government still has the ultimate control over the system. By the way, Eric Benjamin of the Times, that doesnt mean that such control leads to a soviet-like state of control. What kind of leap in logic is this? Benjamin's article in Wednesday's issue of the Times was one of the worst articles EVER.

GumboFilé said...

I think I was reponding to Ricky, and I didn't start the name-calling, and I didn't really call anybody a name, I just gave my impression of what some of you sound like, and it's true, some of you do sound like spoiled children who can't have their toy. Some of you also sound like arrogant jerks. As for acting spoiled, I have nothing to gain by this. No toy for me.

ricky said...

I'm not sure what about my comment sounded like something a spoiled child would say, and you weren't particularly specific, so I'll reduce my statement/question to its essence.

We elected Joey Durel and the City Council to lead our government for at least the rest of their terms. The chiefs at BellSouth and Cox were elected by no one. Their commitment to Lafayette only goes so far as their profit margin. Why they should be the ones making decisions about the direction of our city is beyond me. I don't know what's spoiled about respecting the decisions of our civic leaders and questioning the motives of giant entities who really only care about their profit and not the city of Lafayette.

Neal Breakfield said...

John:

You are absolutely right about one thing: I was rude and I apologize. No excuses. I apologize to you and all the other users for spamming your site.

It will not happen again... with one exception: I will post this where I spammed in hopes that it will clear the air.

I want what I think most of us want: a meaningful, informative and civil discussion where all sides can be heard.

John said...

Neal,

Thanks, that's a gracious and straightforward apology.

Accepted.

We all get wound a mite tighter than is good for us at times. Myself included.

GumboFilé said...

The Chamber has no business taking a position on a controversial issue on which its members are divided.