No sooner have our community’s “critical thinkers” George Rebane and Russ Steele completed their first monthly columns for The Union than they are now blaming the rest of us for “not getting it” if we express skepticism.
Their MO is to comment on each other’s blog, telling the rest of us how simple minded we are. Check it out here.
Russ insults Publisher/Editor Jeff Ackerman’s readers and customers, calling them “IQ challenged,” and George blames it all on our inability to comprehend the printed word.
I feel sorry for The Union and the local Republican Central Committee, which have turned to these two to build more *interactive, constructive dialogue* in our community. George now seems to be carrying water for developers, who need to build more broad based support among skeptics, not alienate them.
Rebane’s column this weekend had a major error, confusing “billion” with “million.” He promptly threw the paper under the bus for the mistake. Funny, since George always promotes personal responsibility as well as numerical illiteracy as his big “issues.”
Maybe he ought to be more engaged in the proofreading process.
Neither of their arguments held much water, either, and people called them out on their logic. For them it was a tough pill to swallow.
Russ complained that the Board of Supervisors was trying to grab additional board seats on the Economic Resource Council — even though the county subsidizes the group practically more than private industry.
To those of us who have served on the board and are familiar with it, a few more board seats among a couple dozen makes the group more accountable, but it doesn’t give the Rood Center a “power grab.” Russ was letting his “big government” ideology get in the way of pragmatism.
Rebane argued that senior citizens are the “cash cows” of our community, and we need to embrace them as part of our economy.
He claims “Nevada County barely makes a business case for locating or keeping information-based businesses” and others because of its location. But *our location* is what just *attracted* a Silicon Valley company here — Huntington Labs.
While promoting the retiree economy, George forgot to mention a key point: Retirees become elderly at some point and can create an undue strain on the economy.
We have a shortage of doctors, health-care workers and caregivers, largely because we have failed to diversify our economy beyond tourism and retirees.
Many service workers can’t afford to live here. Who’s going to take care of our aging population?
To be sure, a retiree economy is a double-edged sword. No analysis on that point, however.
George’s essay came across as self-serving and incomplete — for a Ph.D. no less.
He even missed the mark on the smaller points, “pooh poohing” top-notch amenities in our senior-living facilities, such as the fabulous indoor pool at Eskaton or the “patio” homes there.
In short, both of their “critical thinking” essays fell flat. They came across as out of touch, egocentric and intolerant of opposing views — not exactly constructive.
George and Russ keep talking down to us, not with us. How effective is this type of communication for a diverse community such as ours? We need commentators who can help unite us, not divide us.
Let’s get some more collaborative voices into the mix on local economic-development and economic issues. You need to provide a greater balance of views.
Let’s spend more time discussing the problem of declining enrollment in our schools, the need to attract younger people and families to our communities, and the need to create more higher-paying jobs.