Monday, February 07, 2011

Anonymous Misinformation

I was added to Davidson Conservative's distribution list some time ago and I have mostly ignored it because it’s just so over the top and obviously intended to tear down the Republican Party in our city that I find it worthless. If I hadn’t gotten a new computer and had to reprogram my MailWasher I might not have seen this at all. Criticism of the hard work the Davidson County Republican Party has been doing is all that “Davidson Conservative” seems to do. It’s always easier to tear down than build up and “Davidson Conservative” is clearly taking the easy road. But what’s different about this screed, and why I feel the need to respond, is that, in my opinion, it is specifically intended to slander someone in time for the Davidson County Republican Party’s upcoming convention. That’s lazy, low ball gutter politics and should not be allowed to stand unanswered. So, let me set the record straight for anyone who may have considered "Davidson Conservative" any sort of reliable source. 

I attended the “Running for Metro Council Workshop” hosted by the DCRP on Saturday morning. In fact, I was in charge of checking people in, collecting money and handing out lunches. I was there before the event began and I was there through the whole thing and was among the last to leave. So I write this to respond to “Davidson Conservative”, who is as wrong as they are anonymous. 

From the error filled email:
"Davidson County Republican Party Chairwoman Kathleen Starnes held a training workshop last weekend for those considering a run for Metro Council in 2011; except that most of who she trained were liberal Democrats!"
Let's start with the fact that Kathleen Starnes trained no one at this event. In fact Kathleen missed several chunks of this event because she was at the Bellevue Breakfast Club and so arrived late, had to run out for drinks and cups before lunch, and stepped out of the room several times to speak with people and work with the venue to ensure attendees had what they need. 

Additionally, this wasn't a Kathleen Starnes event. This event was hosted by the Davidson County Republican Party. Our goal was to provide people who are considering running for counsel with some basic information about what was in store for them. We knew that people from all political points of view would be in attendance. I know of no effort to screen those who RSVP'd to the event in order keep anyone out. The list I worked from and that was provided by Kathleen looked just like the one I had complied from E-mailed RSVP’s I had received. Even ousted former DCRP Vice-chair Matt Collins RSVP'd and attended. Clearly, being a bona fide Republican was not a requirement. 

Maybe “Davidson Conservative” is unaware of the fact that Council elections are non-partisan. It makes sense to me that their training sessions should be also. I would hope that every Republican would be happy to ensure that every candidate running to steer our city would understand the job requirements. I attended the Democrat hosted event held recently. Much of that event came across very much like the giving of marching orders to candidates. The DCRP event had none of that and a great deal of honest exchange of information that was truly useful to prospective candidates. It’s to our credit that even liberal Democrats were valued and given a place at the table, quite literally. We don’t agree with their way of running this city but to ignore their wisdom and experience is foolish and akin to cutting off our noses to spite our faces. 

Unless "Davidson Conservative" polled each attendee personally there is no way they can say with certainty that "most...were liberals". Yes, there were plenty of known Democrats on panels and in the audience. But, just like what should happen in the Council, we all played well with each other and respected the process.

One of the invited speakers was head of the SEIU, a government employee's union.  Another panel member invited to speak at this 'supposedly Republican' event was Freddie O'Connell, Mayor Karl Dean appointee and former co-host of the exceptionally progressive liberal Vanderbilt "LibeRadio" talk show:

Firstly, Doug Collier is the local SEIU head. I was told by Freda Player that he was out of town and unable to attend. The SEIU, does represent government employees. It also covers others. Freda Player of the SEIU was on a panel regarding working with the council as an outsider. Should our councilmanic candidates ignore this group representing Metro employees? I think not. Yes, Freddie O’Connell is liberal, but he’s also on the MTA Board and was part of a panel on issues the council will have to deal with in the upcoming term. Should our councilmanic candidates be unaware of the transportation issues in our city? I think not.

A council member attending the event observed that “there were more Democrats than Republicans there”.

Anonymous twofer here. Anonymous “Davidson Conservative” quotes an anonymous source.  When your argument is weak, make stuff up. Better yet, put it in bold font.

Since the day of the training session she has even publicly and openly published a campaign plan for Metro Council races on the DCRP website which anyone is free to read. Talk about providing aid and comfort to the other side!!! Why would you share your campaign strategy for all to see? 

And this is the paragraph that is most wrong. Kathleen had nothing to do with the availability of the “campaign plan” on the DCRP website. I don’t think Kathleen was even in the room when CM Carter Todd mentioned a great resource he recommended. It seemed clear to me that the attendees were very interested in this resource since he praised it so highly. I asked the CM where it could be obtained. He said he had it and I offered, without Kathleen’s knowledge or permission, that if he sent it to me I’d upload it to the DCRP website and make it available to the attendees. He did provide it. I uploaded it as promised. I tweeted its availability. So, do we have this straight? This uploading was my doing and my ‘fault’ and not Kathleen’s in any way, shape or form. 

Now that we’re past the false accusation part it’s actually pretty funny. Had the anonymous arbiter of all things conservative done a bit of  homework, known our city, done a quick Google search, they would never had made the mistake of accusing anyone of providing ‘aid and comfort’ to Democrats. The document originated from a fairly well known Nashville Democrat. It’s certainly not new to them, no secret plan to them, no aid and comfort to them. In fact, if anyone should be peeved, it should be the Democrats.

But this is no surprise since Republican Chairwoman Kathleen Starnes was a former liberal Democrat herself before she decided to conveniently become a Republican a few years ago. One has to wonder if she still shares the same values of her former Party? Was her switch to the Republican Party disingenuous? Why is she still so cozy with the liberal Democrats? Why is she using Republican Party funds to train Democrats? Is she a Democrat plant who has successfully infiltrated the Republican Party? The answer to these questions are starting to become self-evident.

Every time I read an accusation like this I think “What a fool.” This is Nashville. Democrats are a dime a dozen around here. If we didn’t have former Democrat Party members we wouldn’t have very many Republicans at all. It’s part of the goal of the Republican Party to convert LOTS of Democrats to Republicanism. Is “Davidson Conservative” completely unaware of the fact that Ronald Reagan was also a former Democrat? Is he unaware of Jesus’ quote about a house being divided? Did "Davidson Conservative" only decide this was the end of their unfair and false diatribe because they ran out of question marks?

If the anonymous self-appointed defender of conservatism in Nashville named "Davidson Conservative" is as accurate about everything else they do, they, and their followers, are in serious trouble.  Oh wait, they did get one thing right: 

The event took place Saturday the 5th of February at the Green Hills Hampton Inn.

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