I'm not feeling it

Here's an interesting profile of Portland mayoral candidate Sarah Iannarone, in today's Willamette Weed.

I see enough there not to like that at this point, I'm inclined to hold my nose and vote for Wheeler. According to the story:

  • Portland State urban planning expert – strike 1.
  • Throws "Ph.D." around as a credential, with various qualifiers, when she doesn't actually have one – strike 2.
  • Wants a municipal wi-fi network and a city-run bank – strike 3.
  • Multiple years of not paying taxes – strike 4.

It goes on. I'll stop there. Ted is a drag, but I don't see Ms. Iannarone as an improvement. She's an uncomfortably risky proposition at best. 

There’s enough momentum against the police union now that she wouldn’t add much there. And that would be the only reason even to consider voting for her.


  1. Ted sucks and VERY badly needs to go collect however many pensions he's got coming, but not if this is the alternative. Most people quit inflating their credentials sometime in their twenties and just let their resume speak for itself. Add to that her various media appearances wherein she just yells at Donald Trump and yeah...I'm holding my nose.

  2. My reasoning for voting for Sarah. I think the good old days, whatever they might have been, are gone regardless of who is elected. The rebuilding will be something new rather than a return to what was. If I have a political affiliation, it would be pro small business and pro community engagement/participation. We are not going to be saved by superman or any strong leader. Wheeler does not have new vision. He has the vision of the past 20 years here which were extra good years in political terms. It was easy to get powerful interests into coalitions to produce what looked like positive results for Portland. The underside of that was rapidly rising inequality and consolidation of power in smaller groups of people. The parable of the frog in boiling water might be apt there. Ted knows how to get those coalitions together and that is an important skill but without a corresponding increase in transparency efforts and community engagement efforts, it leads toward oligarchical rule and management for maintenance of power.

    I respect that Ted knows his way around politics to some extent, but at this point, his inability to articulate a clear set of values to which he expects the police to adhere which would get both business interests as well as community interests on board is a failure that simply needs to be ousted. If he can't say out loud that police are public servants, not gang enforcers, that justice is not served by revenge or injury, that citizen oversight with power to change practices and deal with officers who violate the public trust is not only necessary but indispensable to community trust and institutional legitimacy, that we are now in a place where cops have violated the public trust and lost their public legitimacy and that is the point we are at from which we must move forward, then he is not going to be able to navigate the emerging social conditions and will just make it more likely that strain will lead to collapse which opens the door to more blatant authoritarianism.

    Sarah does indeed know how to articulate a clear set of community oriented values. An expert in urban planning doesn't need to mean a whole lot more than that she gets the message that Jane Jacobs articulated in "The Death and Life of Great American Cities" with some extra nuance. A city bank could be a fabulous idea, depending how it's used. For reference, look up the bank of north dakota. Her financial situation is common among small business owners and would only be a flag for me if she had a depression fueled meltdown over it and fell apart. I have not seen her actually claim to have a PhD, although if she is a candidate then she has done the coursework and gotten her research proposal approved which is pretty close to the fact and if the subject her education was relevant to a point being made, I can let that slide as being a shorthand that she probably shouldn't use but that in some cases expedience could justify.

    I was happy to vote for Ted last spring because the whole changing horses in midstream thing and he seemed to do well under pressure. But I think we are in a crisis where values will determine the course we will chart in a new world and her values are substantially clearer and frankly better than Wheeler's. If she is competent enough to keep a schedule and find some common ground, she will be better for Portland in the long run. It is up to us, not our mayor, to build community. It is up to the mayor to create the conditions where that can happen.

    That's my thought process anyway. It's also important to me to remember that the future is too uncertain right now for any reasoning process to lead to the right or wrong decision without the aid of hindsight. There will be some people who will be able to say I told you so but only because the dice happened to roll their number, not because their reasoning had any real validity. I basically just cannot support anyone who cannot clearly articulte the problem with our police.

  3. Just a follow up to that last post. I got a lot more serious about checking out Sarah last night. While she has expressed a clear value set that aligns with my own, I am less sure of my stance today. I hate to use heresay evidence to support my positions but I need to check this one out. I do in fact respect the urban planning department at PSU, although I understand that some of their output is hard to swallow for some people. I have some peripherally connected contacts who have secondhand information regarding Sarah so it is by no means legit but is worth checking out which I will do today (Hell of a sentence there).

    I temporarily suspend my earlier comment and ask this question, have you encountered any examples of her being a little bit of a prima donna? Examples might be, not apologizing for disrespecting or inconveniencing coworkers, blowing off obligations, taking revenge when she felt slighted, general narcissistic behavior, that sort of thing?

    I'm a little worried she sees herself as a savior and may govern that way.


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