Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Dysfunction Anyone?

 The Jones Library:  Amherst's living room

Perhaps in addition to the nifty new electronic voting clickers the Moderator should also consider another modern day device to assist him with keeping Town Meeting running smoothly: a stun gun.

In all my 25 years of as a Town Meeting participant/observer I have never seen such a display of unruliness bordering on bedlam. Brought to you by, who else, Carol Gray.

Carol Gray with a loaded weapon in her left hand 

Although the Moderator certainly could have handled things better, as "Points of Order" richocheted around the room like shrapnel from a Hellfire missile.

One thing an attorney is trained for is the give-and-take of cross examination. One little slip "opens the door" for a line of questioning that otherwise would be out of bounds.

By allowing the Jones Library delegation to talk about the building project in their presentation he invited Town Meeting members to follow suit, even if it was against his preamble speech to the membership that it would be ruled "outside the scope of the article."

 Historical Society property would have allowed expansion less destructive to green space

Not that I think the zoning change -- which requires a challenging two thirds vote -- was going to pass no matter how smoothly the presentation and follow up discussion went.

The privately owned Town Meeting list serve was a beehive of conspiracy theories all these past few weeks, so the failure was hardly surprising.

By killing the chance for the Jones Library to purchase abutting property from a kindred spirit, Town Meeting has set up the future renovation/expansion project for failure.

Even worse, it demonstrated our legislative body takes Ms. Gray seriously.  That alone is reason enough to terminate Town Meeting. 

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

Voters should be allowed to see the online discussion. If they are going to blame it on the way Yahoo works, they need to find a different host for their discussion page. Unacceptable!

Anonymous said...

Has anyone noticed that this version destroys green space: the 250 year old kitchen garden of the Strong House? Did anyone talk about that? The other version destroys less green space and leaves the library garden connected to the kitchen garden. Facts anyone?

Anonymous said...

The Jones Library in my opinion is the busiest place in town. Serves the most people and draws the most people. All these committees and organizations trying to figure out how to get people in town and they're are killing the best resource.

Anonymous said...

...it demonstrated our legislative body takes Ms. Gray seriously. That alone is reason enough to terminate Town Meeting.

HEAR HEAR!

Anonymous said...

I think this photo of carol really captures her soul.

kevin said...

Now playing, on the Carol Gray channel, from last weeks Charter Commission Public Hearing -- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EnbvlmbfN_M

'Scuse me while I puke.

Larry Kelley said...

Only topped by last night's performance.

Anonymous said...

Does town meeting have homeless people as members as carol says in the video?

Larry Kelley said...

I don't believe so. Maybe in the past.

Anonymous said...

On the TM members yahoo e-list, didn't Mr. Kevin Collins say that he is sometimes homeless ... this came up after he was questioned about the address of his legal residence by another TM member.

Anonymous said...

I can't find the amherst town meeting blog you said was a beehive of activity. Do you have the url?

Anonymous said...

7:22, plebians like us are excluded from the forum. Carol Gray and Larry Kelly have full access because they are Town Meeting members.

Anonymous said...

I know I won't be able to submit comments but I just wanted to see the discussion.

Anonymous said...

Nope. Access denied. Welcome to Amherst!

Anonymous said...

Was Ms. Gray also the unpopular savior of that little school Amherst College wants to demolish? She's really just another Vince, isn't she. These people are so self-serving, they LOVE being big fish in a small pond. I guarantee that the primary reason they are all so anti-development and expansion is that they desperately want to keep it a very small pond, else they'd lose the standing they have in the community.

These people rarely, if ever, act in the best interest of Amherst's citizens. They are the worst kind of public servants: SELF SERVING.

Ralph Reed said...

The "Magic Garden," as it was called in certain sub-circles, mowed down by gentrification.

Anonymous said...

The Moderator was/is the problem.

Anonymous said...

You should start a recall election, that would be fun,

Anonymous said...

What is wrong with the people in this town? The Jones Library is a wonderful library and the garden outside is so beautiful and peaceful. Why are you talking about screwing all that up with a renovation that will ruin that garden? Most towns would kill to have a beautiful library and garden like that. I go into Jones Library fairly often and I have never thought it was too small or needed to be enlarged. The number of people in there on any given day seem to be enjoying themselves and aren't complaining about the library's size? Is this all because someone in the library administration has got her panties in a twist for building a new library? Is that why you are considering ruining what you have? Will no one just come out and say it? You are ruining this town. Between kowtowing to student "activists" that want to rewrite history with meaningless protests and gestures like renaming the Lord Jeffrey instead of actually contributing something of value to the town and Town Meeting Members who only want to hear the sound of their own voices, this town is turning into a laughable crapfest. I'm sorry.... stop worshiping political correctness and start appreciating the town for all that it has. Amherst is a laughing stock of towns in this state. It's such a pity. We already had a little slice of paradise here and we are hellbent on ruining it.