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05/13/02  How do we take it back?

There are many levels where just a handful of power junkies (rich and wannabe's) control everything important in this town.  They are Our Downtown Betters (the ODB), even though many of them would never go to Downtown Dallas.  

It's not because they are smarter than the rest of us.  Their power comes from money and leverage.   They either have their own big money to leverage against various government agencies or they have influence or control money (someone else's $$).  

You can't call this particular type of robber baron greedy -- it's not about acquiring great wealth (although they do that, too).  Their main priority is control and power and leverage.  They wake up in the morning thinking of ways to expand their power base that day.  Who are they going to shakedown?  Here are two examples of how their obsession with power impacts your life and pocket book:

1.  DART has a preferred alignment for elevated light rail going North -- right down Harry Hines.  Their preferred route would hook up with the elevated crossing bridge at Southwest Medical/Zale Lipshy.  It's sensible, it's efficient, and it would serve Love Field passengers and the general Dallas County community the most effectively.  One powerful jerk in the Southwest Medical Community is blocking the entire route because he doesn't want the riff-raff who might use light rail stopping near Zale-Lipshy.  This jerk is frequently called the best beggar in Dallas.  He raised over $250 Million in donations for Southwest Medical.

No one would dispute the importance of Southwest Medical to our city and county.  They have brought great, positive recognition for Dallas.   The consortium of Harry Hines medical facilities have done wonders to improve the appearance of the boulevard in their area.  That does not give them the right to arbitrarily cost Dallas taxpayers -- and all the citizens of DART-participating municipalities -- over $23 Million just because their chief fundraiser has some insecurity problems he hasn't dealt with.

Not only will it cost us $23 Million more than taking the line down Harry Hines, the route this fundraiser-guy is forcing on DART would wipe out a big hunk of Arlington Park, an established single family residential community that is predominantly African-American.  When the Hospital people bought off former council member Barbara Caraway, they were able to get an apartment complex plopped down in the middle of that neighborhood over the objection of most of the residents.  Arlington Park has already been victimized.  

Taking away the homes of elderly Black people is not going to look good for DART's image.

No one will remember it was the top fundraiser for Southwest Medical who forced DART into that wrong alignment.  DART is going to be blamed when the houses are taken.  No one will remember an employee of the Hospital group was sitting on the DART Board to carry their water when the non-Harry Hines route was approved.  No one will remember that Southwest Medical drew an imaginary building on their future site plans just so they could block the best route for DART and/or shakedown DART for millions.  

On good authority, it is only one very successful fundraiser who is driving this DART train the wrong way.  You need to call your County Commissioner and tell him you want to save our tax money and save Arlington Park by keeping DART light rail going right down the middle of Harry Hines.

2.  Victory/Palladium -- Here's a second way some ODB are going to ruin our city and cost you and me money.  This is an amazing example of what leverage will get you with the likes of Beat that Indictment Fantroy, Brain-Dead T-Reese and Don Hill on the council.  The big boys even got to Dr. Elba Garcia.  It's all about money, honey!  

The Victory/Palladium crooks have bought off several minority council members with promises to transfer some of their tax abatement savings to those particular districts.  There is no way to properly manage how that money is used once it's diverted.  It will be like Shakedown Chaney's operations in the Fair Park area with that Smirnoff blood money.  See Shakedown City.  There is Smirnoff money being spent in South Dallas, but it is being spent by friends of Leo Chaney on their pet projects -- some of which are pretty interesting.

Any future robber baron seeking a multi-million dollar tax abatement just has to put some money on the table for a couple of council crooks or take Mayor PreTend Poss to lunch, and/or both.  They can be sure the appropriate speeches are made on how this will benefit the minority community and can be certain any opposition will be met with screams of racism. 

Now, MPT Poss is comparing the Victory Project to Dallas losing out on its bid for Boeing.  That stupid, stupid woman!  

If Boeing was ever seriously considering Dallas (which is doubtful), we lost out because we have a miserable Downtown.  According to Christine Perez of the The Dallas Business Journal, Central Business District rental rates declined by nearly 4% in 2001.  These are old buildings that will be competing with brand new buildings in a shopping mall setting.  We are in effect subsidizing the final end to any viability of our Downtown if Victory/Palladium gets their $43 Million extortion request.

These are issues that will impact your life -- your children's lives.  The ODB and their council puppets think you have no say, you just get to pay.  These issues are being determined by people who are no smarter than you and certainly much less ethical than you.   You just cannot close your eyes and hope it goes away.

A council person told me there are 8 votes for Victory/Palladium's tax abatement.   Call your council representative.  Make note of who votes for the tax abatement.  Plan to send checks to anyone who is willing to oppose those 8 council members.  Fortunately, Poss and Walne go away with this term.

The DART/Harry Hines matter is more fixable.  You can call your County Commissioner and let him know you don't want one fundraiser to control the whole DART rail alignment.

There's another option to fighting to take back our city -- you can just move out of town to escape becoming a serf for Our Downtown Betters.





  Ward politics is the Devil's key to the soul of the city council.  It is how some council members got themselves in trouble in the past.  It is the bait that will get others in trouble in the future. 4/6/8