Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Shamefully Biased Jim Sutton Editorial on St. Augustine Beach Commission Vacancy in St. Augustine Record newspaper

St. Augustine Record Opinion Editor JIM SUTTON shows his ass, and his animus in an uninformed editorial about St. Augustine Beach Commission vacancy.

Do Sheriff DAVID SHOAR and State's Attorney R.J. LARIZZA own SUTTON -- or does he owe them --  as a result of their bungled handling of SUTTON's intoxicated driving wreck, involving alcohol, Ambien, a mailbox and a man on the hood of his car?

Beach: Prioritize what is right over who is right

So, Gary Snodgrass’ abrupt retirement from the St. Augustine Beach Commission has smoked out — count them — 14 candidates, all eyeing the single seat.

An editorial would normally begin with something like this: “It’s heartening to know that 14 citizens are willing to give up parts of their personal lives in order to make government fire on all eight cylinders in this modest beach town. Kudos to their sense of responsibility and stewardship.”
That, however, might not be altogether true. Fact is, there will be some candidates who may have ulterior motives for running. Paybacks might be one. Ego is likely another.
The remaining Beach Commissioners will, apparently, interview all the candidates in a regular meeting Dec. 4; likely ranking them on some sort of qualitative system, adding up the scores and picking a winner.
The other option would be to hold a special election to fill the seat. That would be the most egalitarian route to take. But it would cost money — around $35,000.
So the interviews will probably have to do.
There should be two questions the sitting commissioners ask each candidate. First, “What makes you qualified to lead this city?”
The second question may be more illuminating. We’d suggest the candidates spell out briefly — but precisely — why they want the seat in the first place. (Hint: giving back to the city that gave so much to you, probably won’t play in Peoria.)
The job doesn’t pay much. Beach commissioners take a lot of guff off the predominately colorful crowds that attend the meetings. If the crowd doesn’t start some kind of spat, it seems the duty of commissioners to fill in for them, by arguing among themselves. Finally, The paid insurance perk is dead, at least until the next time it comes up. So what’s the upside?
The dominant attribute that must be exhibited by a beach commissioner, historically speaking, is one of the four “Cs” — captious, contrary, cantankerous and contentious. It’s helpful to also have a background in linear physics — like how much is 35 feet.
Still, the candidate must be able to deliver the goods in an unassuming manner, with eye-rolls, bit lips, deep sighs and occasionally a cross word — at least while the camera is rolling. Some background or special talent in verbal pugilism is generally most helpful.
It’s not easy, and certainly not all of the candidates could qualify. For instance, Tom Reynolds has his four Cs down pat. But can he refrain from letting loose too early? We met Rose Bailey last year in endorsement meetings. She showed up with her own cameraman and entourage, compliments of the local Tea Party — which is OK — though she had some difficulty answering specific questions about beach issues, preferring to stand by her party’s national objectives — no government, no taxes, no, sir.
From where we sit, the ideal candidate would need to understand a few things. St. Augustine Beach is a beautiful town that nearly runs itself. Get out of its way. Its residents are predominately savvy professionals who feed its quality of commerce. They realize that the city is at, or slightly past, its quality of life tipping point. It’s getting too big for its board shorts. Commercial taxes do fill the coffers, but a balance needs to be met.
Bigger is no longer better. And the candidates who best articulate that understanding, their love for the town and their capacity for the stewardship of its great possibilities should make the short list.
If they show up in flip-flops, well, it’s just gravy.


Edward Adelbert Slavin · 

1. Shallow excuse for an "editorial" by Jim Sutton, who has repeatedly attacked activists.
2. When retired Record editors Margo Pope and Peter Ellis wrote editorials, the Record appreciated activitists and even praised some of us by name, making us blush.
3. But Jim Sutton is the exact opposite. In one-sided pro-establishment editorials, Jim Sutton has lauded praise on people who don't deserve it. He damned government watchdogs B.J. Kalaidi and Tom Reynolds as "hangers-on," misusing the term and abusing two dissenters, among the few who attend meetings gavel-to-gavel.
4. Jim Sutton has never attended a St. Augustine Beach City Commission meeting, to my knowledge.
5. Jim Sutton's angry attack on Rose Bailey and Tom Reynolds -- the two candidates I mentioned in my comment yesterday -- speaks volumes. Has Mr. Sutton unfairly attacked protected activity, just as he wrote about how his mentor did at Flagler College when Sutton was newspaper editor?
6. Sutton's 2016 St. Augustine Record editorial endorsement of Mayor Richard O'Brien deprived readers of informations on Mayor O'Brien's abuse of public office and unfairly mocked Ms. Rosetta Bailey.
7. On December 7, 2016, Circuit Judge Howard O. McGillin held O'Brien violated the First Amendment when he sought a stalking injunction against Mr. Reynolds.
8. Jim Sutton has never written a word of criticism of constitutional rights violations by political bosses, including Sheriff David Shoar.
9. Jim Sutton has never written about the Michelle O'Connell case. He's repeatedly rejected columns in which I mentioned the need for an investigation..
10. Jim Sutton once wrote a column attacking me as a "gadfly" and a "conspiracy theorist."
11. I've never met Jim Sutton, but I must now question his lack of intellectual integrity.
12. I hereby challenge him to a televised debate.
LikeReplyJust now
Tom Reynolds · 
Thank you for the Endorsement, Jim!

plus thank you for the tip on shoe choice ...............

I will be Sporting a Long Sleeve Tuxedo T-Shirt, a new off the racks of the Betty Griffith Boutique,pair of baggy shorts (no skinny tight anything on this HOT BOD) and of course, UGG BOOTS!

I am going to CRUSH the competition, if a person could even call it that, in the BEACH COMMISSION FASHION CATEGORY!
UnlikeReply214 hrsEdited
Jim Sutton · 
You go, Tom...
UnlikeReply113 hrs

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