Those who can, do; those who can’t, write about it. Such is the difference between politicians and newspaper editorialists at the Post-Star.
Politicians are responsible for the decisions they make. It takes time, sometimes much time, to work out what the right policies are. Coming to a correct analysis and understanding of the facts takes more time than is allotted at a public meeting. Yet the Post-Star wants representatives of the different governments in the area to do all their debating and deciding right in front of everyone, especially the reporters seeking a story.
I spent 12 years in government. Voters came to our meetings when we took important votes, and they asked questions about why we voted the way we did. There was complete transparency. What mattered most to them was the substance of our thinking. No one wanted to know how many times one of us had changed our minds before we voted. In fact, if I had been forced to vote on some issues while I was going through the process of coming to a decision, I would have voted differently than I finally did. Because I went through the weeks-long process before I decided, my decision was more true to what I believed was right.
The one remarkable observation I had of Post-Star reporters over the years was how little they had done their homework. A reporter once asked me about an issue out in front of City Hall. I had just come from the mayor’s office about it. I told the reporter he should look up the information he wanted by going through the budget, which was readily available. I wanted to see if he would. He didn’t and the issue, an extremely important one ($500,000), was never reported by the Post-Star.
Jim Brock, Glens Falls
Retired from Glens Falls Common Council and Warren County Board of Supervisors
Catch the latest in Opinion
Get opinion pieces, letters and editorials sent directly to your inbox weekly!