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The process of elimination. 
Two Cents Worth
by Bill Evans, The Bay Times

Since I started writing the column again, Iíve already been asked the inevitable. ďWhen are you going to do something on growth?Ē Iím tempted to say, ďSorry, been there, done that.Ē That was four years ago, but still feels eerily like déjà vu. But some things have changed. 

Itís not just Kent Island and Four Seasons anymore like it was in 2002. And residents of Queenstown, Centreville and some of the hamlets up county who sympathized back then with those poor people living on the island, are now, themselves, those poor people! 

Also, we had 3 commissioners then, and five now. Back then the score was Commissioners 3 - People 0. Now the score is Commissioners 3 - People 2. But 3-0 or 3-2, it still adds up to the same thing. People lose! 

How did that happen? I have a theory. 

I believe we were brought down by our own value system based on an unwritten code of honor rooted in Queen Anneís tradition. Look a person in the eye around here and tell Ďem something and youíll get the benefit of the doubt the first time around. But begin saying one thing, doing another, and all bets are off! From that day forward your word wonít buy a free seat at the county fairís pretty baby contest. Itís harsh justice, but it keeps people honest. Correction...it keeps most people honest. 

But the problem takes on a new dimension when your vote is involved, because you have to wait four years to right the wrong. So what do we do between now and November with 19 candidates in the running? 

I donít know about you, but I get a headache deciding what to have for lunch. Usually I fall back on the process of elimination to whittle the list of possibles to a manageable few. After I eliminate the leftover pork because of the suspicious green fungi, and rule out salad because I havenít bought fresh greens in a decade, I grill my ham and cheese and get on with my day. 

The process of elimination can also make our job as a voter easier. 

For example, if there are incumbents running whose actions in office ran contrary to what they said while campaigning, eliminate them from the list. According to my math this leaves 16 candidates. 

Now place an asterisk next to the incumbents who proved their honesty and earned your trust during the last four years in office. These are keepers. 

 Now you have 14 candidates vying for 3 spots. It gets tricky here. A good place for the process of elimination to kick in. 

Cross them off your list if they...

- Talk in circles using generalities and platitudes but, when challenged, canít articulate a specific and detailed position on important issues. 

- Fail to demonstrate the courage and resolve needed to stand up for their constituentsí wishes against formidable opposition. 

- Havenít exhibited an honest passion for Queen Anneís honored traditions, quality of life, and natural resources. 

- Donít understand that, more often than not, the cost of infrastructure for ill advised growth is greater than the income gained from it, and leads inevitably to higher taxes! If they try to tell you different, you are allowed one profanity Ė an eight letter word that begins with B and ends with T. 

Come to think of it, I couldíve saved myself a lot of work by boiling this column down to a four word warning to candidates. You B------T, you lose! 

Be sure to read Did I miss something?

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© 2000 - 2006 Bill Evans.  Used By Permission.  All Rights Reserved.
Two Cents Worth columns appear weekly in the Bay Times in spite of the editorís usual good taste and judgment.


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