Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Moran wasn't wrong on this one

Labor honcho Curt Wilson is bum rapping former Kenosha Mayor Pat Moran for not suing Chryster Corporation when it ended auto production in Kenosha in 1988.

The truth is that there was no basis for such a lawsuit. The truth is that Chrysler, while damaging the city's economy, still maintained engine production here and paid millions to retrain workers and make other civil improvements.

Chrysler's decision to end auto production here may in hindsight have been boneheaded but so, too, would have been a lawsuit of dubious merit that would have tied up scarce city resources and finances that were appropriately used to attempt to move the city forward at a time when the economy was on life support. It also would have created false hopes rather than delivering the harsh reality check that shifting gears was the only way the community could survive.

And survive it did.

While Pat Moran's "new direction" seems to be backward and his supporters include friends of special interests, such as Aldermen Steve Casey and Jesse Downing, he made the right call on this one and the slam against him was uncalled for.

Curt Wilson needs to understand you're either part of the problem or part of the solution. His view certainly isn't the latter.


peteydachef said...

Hello again good sir,

I commend you on pointing out that suing a city’s largest employer would have been one of the largest imaginable mistakes we could make. What message does it send to other companies looking at setting up shop in Kenosha? It would send them running, its common sense, whether the union hacks will admit it or not.

I am curious though, how Mr. Casey and Mr. Downing endorsing Mr. Moran is special interest? It seems to me, by looking at voting records, that these two do not agree with the way our current administration has handled things, and want to see a change in our spending. It only makes sense that they would support the man pushing for a change, rather than the one that wants to keep things going as is.

I also believe that the union endorsements for Mr. Bosman are far more special interest than having a few Alderman. The guys looking for big dollar city building contracts and such have far more personal benefit on the line than a two Alderman that realize the mistakes the city has made.

RAG said...

Special interests are special interests no matter who the candidate is. A union's special interest is usually fairly identifiable.

As for Pat, I have known him for years and supported him because he helped move the city forward. He legitimately can take some of the credit for the progress the city had made because he helped set the wheels in motion.

The flip side is that he walked away from city hall and has been detached until recently. It seems almost disingenuous for him to repudiate the very inertia he helped establish and the "new direction" seems like a vaguely defined move backward which is utterly unacceptable. We simply shouldn't even consider turning the clock back.

I also like Steve Casey and his loyal opposition has served a public interest but there are times when the overall good has to be considered.

The city hasn't made many mistakes and those that occurred are far outweighed by accomplishments.

Ralph said...

Casey and Downing are friends of the liquor and tobacco industries, geez.

RAG said...

I opted not to include a response/comment because it seemed to be more like a Moran camopaign speech and he has his own web site which everyone is invited to visit. Plus, the comments seem to be misdirected attacks at the present mayor who is a lame duck and not the opponent. All three major candidates suffer from an affinity for being vague and general. Everyone wants lower taxes, better public safety and more jobs and industry but nobody gives any specifics nor identifies specifically what they did or will do.

As for Moran's sudden affinity for criticizing the mayor, where was he for the last 16 years? That's a fair question and Moran has not given an answer, let alone a sufficient one. He has a lot of explaning to do.

Anonymous said...

Moran seems to want it both ways. In one breath he wants to talk about the Chrysler shutdown and plays himself to be a big hero. Then, in the next breath, he is trying to distance himself by saying he couldn't have sued them if he wanted to.

He wants to pick and choose the issues in his past that voters should see - there are a lot of things he did as mayor that he doesn't want to talk about.

Moran brought up the Chrysler issue on radio and on his website, which is unfortunate because it was a very difficult time for a lot of people in this city.

The union and business endorsements of Bosman represent a lot of people, not individuals. If Moran had gotten then, he'd be touting them too. I'd be surprised if he didn't try to get them.

I agree - I wish all of them would talk more about what they are going to do and not so much about the past (especially Antaramian's past - since he isn't even running).

I think the people in Kenosha will not respond well to negative campaigning and just criticizing. There is enough of that going on at the federal level.

Anonymous said...

What I see is Moran trying to inflame public sentiment by beating the public safety drum and saying we have too many museums. But at the same time we then have to look at his record in terms of developing the downtown area and it isn't very good. That's the problem -- you can't be critical without opening yourself up. How many fire stations did Moran open? The police department? He was a supporter of law enforcement, sure, but they were below national average in staffing then? Street maintenance? City snow plowing was just as bad then as now. What about bringing new businbess to the city and getting rid of the "no growth" attitude of Ray Forgiani and other city department heads?

Don't get me wrong. Moran did help get things off dead center and deserves some credit for that but at the same time he can hardly criticize Antaramian who built on what Moran started.

Bosman, for his part, wants to rest on Antaramian's laurels and doesn't seem to have the stones to be a leader. That's too bad because if he wants to be mayor he needs to find them.

PMoss said...

A lot of folks forget that the city was taking baby steps toward diversification when Chrysler pulled the plug. It was especially hard because of that but I agree that a lawsuit would have been futile, costly and would have delayed necessary development.