Just because a jerk said it, doesn't mean it's wrong

By now you may have read about former Portland Mayor Sam Adams's idea, leaked (supposedly) last week, to round up all the city's street campers, and force them into three 1,000-bed emergency mega-shelters with the help of the National Guard. Adams now works for the current mayor, Dud Wheeler, as the "strategic initiatives" man. I don't know what that's supposed to mean, but I'd bet the airing of his proposal was blessed by Wheeler. 

It's as obvious as a trial balloon can be. Dud's been talking about his "executive order" authority lately, and this would be the main thing to use it on (if it in fact exists).

Anyway, you can imagine the bleats from the homeless industrial complex, whose comfy careers would be ruined if Portland actually cleaned up its homeless mess. "Cruelty camps!" "Concentration camps!" Yeah, they actually said that.

There is nothing more cruel than the camps we have now. Cruel not only to the campers, but to everyone else who lives here.

The only part of Creepy Sam's dream that I disagree with is the massive 1,000-person shelters. They might work for a few months, but they would need to be replaced by facilities that would last years. Cheap facilities. I'd go with smaller barracks-like buildings, like the old Quonset huts, holding maybe 30 people in each. 

And no, you wouldn't have to build 100 of them, because a lot of the tent dwellers are junkies and mentally ill people who won't live by any rules. For them, you need jail beds, vagrancy laws, and drug and mental illness treatment beds.

You can call it concentration camps, call it anything you want, but Portland's downhill slide will never stop until the streets are cleared. And they're never going to be cleared if it depends on building hundreds of apartments that will merrily take in drug addicts and not mind that they won't pay any rent. Sorry, tough love is what's needed.

Barracks-like shelters, lots of jail beds, and more drug treatment and mental illness treatment. Motel-type rooms if there are kids. That, or something like it, is the only way out. 

The late mayor Bud Clark said it well: "Living in a tent with a needle in your arm is not part of the community standard." He knew it. Vera Katz knew it. And Sam Adams, for years Vera's flunkie, knows it. For once in his life, he is on the right track. 

Right now we're doing nothing. Even the old Edgefield poor farm was a better system than we have now.

One of the current city commissioners, Chainsaw Carmen Rubio, immediately dismissed Adams's ideas as a "nonstarter." So did another City Council member, Jo Ann "With the Bullhorn" Hardesty, using the exact same word. Two world-class nonstarters themselves.

Anyway, we all need to consider the Adams plan if there's any hope for Portland. All I ask is, for the love of God, get him out of City Hall and find somebody else to implement it.


  1. Give the fella a chance to redeem himself by getting this done.

    1. I agree with Paula. I am not a fan of the guy at all, but sometimes you have to give people second chances in life. I mean really.......does Portland have much to lose at this point? The dude is a strange fellow for sure, but sometimes even odd people accomplish great things.

  2. Do you think that a majority of Portland “leaders” would ever follow-through or even propose anything that would accomplish anything of any significance to the average (read normal) Portland citizen? Everything has to be filtered through their special constituents consisting of various groups of malcontents, and their own bizarre worldview(s).

    Anything that could be construed as “being mean” or tough will be automatically rejected. It is seen as bowing to the MAGA types, and would just prove that they have been wrong all along. No, they must stay the course.

  3. Unless you locate these tough love camps outside of town, it has zero chance of success. if they are still near their source of drugs and sh!t to steal there is no way it will work. I propose a farm setup where they have to actually become productive and responsible.

    1. One of the things that made Edgefield work was that it was pretty far out of town (in those days).


Post a Comment

The platform used for this blog is awfully wonky when it comes to comments. It may work for you, it may not. It's a Google thing, and beyond my control. Apologies if you can't get through. You can email me a comment at jackbogsblog@comcast.net, and if it's appropriate, I can post it here for you.