The Blog Squad

Friday, February 16, 2007

The Master of Revenge is at it again

There are those who subscribe to the notion that living well is the best revenge. Then there are those for whom isolating your enemy, excoriating and belittling them in the most public way possible and making sure they take the blame for a completely unrelated but unacceptable situation is the best revenge.

I don’t suppose I’m going out on a limb in suggesting Doug Wilder falls into the latter category.
The Emperor’s latest gambit is to link the Richmond School Board (whom Wilder clearly detests) with the rising real estate assessments that have Richmond property owners concerned, if not up in arms. Wilder barely made a logically tenuous link suggestion that wasteful public schools spending is related to inflated assessments, yet the Richmond Times-Dispatch unwittingly gave Wilder the most delicious gift in its lead on the story Wednesday: “Is there a link between rising property assessments and spending by Richmond Public Schools?”

And also, senator, when did you stop beating your wife?

The suggestion, now out there -- no matter how “out there” -- can’t just be yanked back, which, I submit, pleases Wilder greatly. Wilder has taken these two seemingly unrelated issues -- rising assessments and wasteful spending by RPS -- and fused them together, hoping they will stay that way in the minds of Richmond residents.

This has the whiff of another stink Wilder raised last summer when he suggested that he might be forced to cut trash pick-up service to punish City Council for cutting 1 percent from the budgets of city agencies, amounting to $600,000 from the department of Public Works. While Council said the cuts were clearly meant for administration and office supply-type costs, Wilder used the opportunity to blindside Council by setting them up as the bad guys for cutting one of the city’s most basic services to Richmonders. (He never did it, by the way.) Then to twist the knife a little more, he also suggested that cuts in Parks and Recreation might mean reduced hours for neighborhood recreation centers. Oh, no, not the children!

Really, you’ve got to hand it to this guy. He is like a surgeon of revenge -- focused, precise and cutting -- and woe be to anyone who lands on his bad side.



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