REPLY TO: Marc Johnson – The Relentless Negativity of Politics: A Tea Party in Manzanita, really?

By: Gerald W Wineinger
First, Marc, I want to thank you for the great work you do for our community.
Your letter hits the mark about all the negativity in elections. Manzanita is a wonderful place to live in and it will still be a wonderful place after the election no matter who wins.
The two major themes that incumbent supporters point out are that the challengers are nasty people and the incumbents are saving you from COVID-19. How pathetic as neither of these are even close to the truth.

I take exception with you calling the challengers in Manzanita the Tea-Party. We have no tea party in Manzanita. You also claim the challengers are using innuendo and attacks on incumbents’ integrity when the truth is the exact opposite, the innuendos and attacks on integrities has come from the supporters of the incumbents against the challengers. The challengers have clearly stated their issues are with the decisions the Manzanita mayor and council have been making, not against any individual. Only the decisions of the office they hold is being challenged. Any challenge against the mayor or council about their decisions is called participatory democracy, not innuendo, not misrepresentation and not thinly veiled assaults on the honesty and integrity of the incumbents. Yes, democracy is messy. From my heart the intentions and disagreements about their decisions are not directed at any person what so ever. The problem is, when there is no sensible reply to a disagreement from the opposition, the incumbents’ supporters say the opposition is attacking the person when that is not true at all.
No matter how eloquent it may be written, the supporters of the incumbents keep trying to distract voters by hurling insults at the challengers. Sorry, Marc, but your favorite candidates aren’t running against the tea party, the far right, Newt Gingrich, or whatever cheap shot comes next from the incumbents’ side. Some people in Manzanita feel that it’s time after 22 years of uncontested mayoral elections to make some changes. Why not respect those voters instead of trying to find just the right nasty label to stick on them?
I attend almost every Manzanita council meeting we have, and it seems to me that if you really cared about what is going on in Manzanita and want to understand the decisions made by the council and mayor you might want to attend as well. Anytime a citizen who is not part of the council or mayor’s inner circle disagrees with a decision, that citizen is called an attacker. We have been told by their supporters if we disagree with them “don’t look back as the door behind you slams shut”. The mayor and council never correct these unkind remarks, but instead applaud them.
As to the ideas and proposals of the challengers, details are available at https://manzanitacitizensalliance.org/ This website has information about all candidates not just half of them. Letters to citizens of Manzanita have been mailed and received detailing the ideas and proposals of the challengers. I would be glad to provide you a copy.
We have serious problems in Manzanita.
  • Mayor and council ignored the warning signs of mold in 2017 in the current city hall
  • Botched bond that was voted out by almost 70%
  • City staff now housed in way too small of quarters
  • Short Term Rental overloads in hot zone areas
  • City is paying $155K+ per year on land we are not using
  • Storm sewer problem that was identified two years ago is now causing a budget shortfall of ~$800K to $1.2M.
Sure they tell everyone they are doing a great job with COVID-19. I lived in the middle of the mess this last spring break when other cities like Warrenton, OR lead the way doing what was needed and the residents of Manzanita had to wake up our mayor who does not live in an STR hot zone to the problem. I posted information about what Warrenton was doing and finally our mayor did something. I was contacted by one of our current councilors stating I should not have alerted people to the fact that Warrenton was doing something because it made Manzanita look bad. Image seems to be more important than the residents.
Your Voice, for a Change – Make sure to vote.
Scott Galvin for Manzanita Mayor, Randy Kugler and Jerry Spegman for Manzanita Council
Gerald W Wineinger
Resident of Manzanita, OR