From the get-go, we wrote that the new weekly columnist for The Union, George Boardman, was a Jeff Ackerman “mini me,” in tone and in “content.” It is a defensive strategy by The Union to prop up its diminishing readership of aging, conservative readers instead of reaching out to new readers. There is no weekly columnist to counteract Boardman.
Now George has upped the ante: He has become a water boy for the hard-right in his election season blog posts, which The Union links to weekly from its print edition. It’s time that he disclose his financial arrangement for this “communication.”
In his latest “observation,” Boardman concludes that Gregory Diaz running unopposed for clerk-recorder this year is somehow a sign of miscalculating that there is any coordinated politicking going on by the hard-right contingent in our community. He downplays the activities of a “hard right machine” and its ringleaders.
In fact, Diaz running unopposed is merely a sign that the hard-right couldn’t find anybody to run against him – though it sure tried. And Boardman’s political ally, hard-right and tea party activist Barry Pruett provides the proof: “Will somebody please run against this guy …” Pruett pleaded in a Facebook post in January, referring to Diaz. Pruett then linked directly to this post on Boardman’s blog that chastised Diaz. (See screen grab below).
“Tea Party’s 40-year plan”
Alas, they tried but no one was brave enough to come forward, not to mention Pruett, who lost in every precinct when he ran against Diaz for the same post. (The tea party also tried to find a candidate to run against Supervisor Richard Anderson in Truckee a few years ago — but failed). The tea party’s “40-year” plan calls for recruiting politicians, judges and educators who share its views to “take back our country.”
Then Boardman goes on to downplay the tea party PAC donation to District 3 supervisor candidate Dan Miller for his first mailer, even expressing pride that The Union has failed to report on it. From over in Penn Valley, Pruett chipped in $300 to Miller’s campaign, a nice politically collaborative gesture though he can’t vote in the District 3 race.
And Boardman is also proud that neither he, nor The Union, has reported on Tom McClintock’s contribution to the developer of the proposed Dorsey Center “lifestyle” shopping mall, even though McClintock later ranked the interchange a “high priority.” Regardless of your perspective on a “lifestyle” center, many cities have banned development on ridge-tops in their communities because it is unsightly.
And the one to quickly come to Boardman’s defense on his blog is none other than hard-right advocate Todd Juvinall, whose nasty partisan tone is legendary among locals.
Why is The Union censoring routine campaign contribution filings about this year’s election, along with activities of a hard-right political machine? I suspect I know why: Because The Union is the “Tea Party Gazette,” and Boardman is the latest political pawn, in exchange for being perceived as “a player” in our community. I’m sure The Union also thinks it can generate new ad revenue from a new lifestyle mall (though it is in for a rude awakening: direct mail is changing how businesses advertise).
Hard right wants “low information voter”
Along with Boardman and Pruett, The Union is contributing to the hard-right’s campaign for a “low-information voter” turnout this year, hoping their aggressive coordinated politicking is swept under the rug — or ignored. They are trying to counter transparency (and Boardman is supposedly a former journalist).
As we’ve said all along, Boardman is an angry-toned conservative retiree who hasn’t had enough to do since his family-run restaurant, The Stonehouse in Nevada City, shut down several years ago.
So instead of looking at his own shortcomings trying to run a small business in our community in his commentary, providing an educational outlet, Boardman shoots “verbal harpoons” from his perch in a gated community, where I suspect he routinely turns “left” to shop when he gets to Highway 49 — outside our county.
In short, George is not a complete enough community stakeholder to be taken seriously. Yet his column is the only one in The Union that appears weekly. And now he’s being used by the political operatives in a bid to be “important” (AKA yet another “big fish in a small pond”).
Pruett’s Facebook page, where he openly recruits for a candidate to run against Diaz, pointing to Boardman’s blog (to no avail):