Not Better, Not Worse, Just Different
I have often commented, and remarked, about what the Speak Out Loud NA blog is for, and why it is that way, but I have never approached the issue to address why this blog is Different from the other blogs. Apparently, it’s time to do just that, as the attacks from the “others” are getting quite nasty and brutish.
Anyone who has read this blog for more than a couple of months, maybe less, knows the bashing and the constant harassing that we get from Volunteer Hoosier, aka Randy Smith, and New Albany Confidential, aka Roger Baylor (from this point forward to be known as R&R).
We have repeatedly requested that they refrain from visiting the SOLNA blog if they found it to be so objectionable to them. We suggested many times that if they do not agree with our purpose, or our mission, that they should simply keep to their own blogging practices, and just leave us alone. We really saw no point in continuing to argue, or to constantly defend our rights to free speech and the choice we made to allow anonymous comments.
As an interesting note, it is in fact the “Baylorites” (name we use for the folks who agree with R&R) that over-use the anonymous blanket to toss out very ugly comments. I will go back and retrieve some of those for you folks to look at, but most of you already know the tactics they use to try to intimidate and speak down to us. Here’s a few just from the last posting:
Anonymous said... you guys are losing it man, time to check into solna's nut house 1:14 PM, January 08, 2006
Anonymous said... tonight you little people will be so humiliated, you are toast 3:48 PM, January 09, 2006
Anonymous said... cry me a river losers 4:16 PM, January 09, 2006
Anonymous said... so go and sue the council then big mouth 8:49 PM, January 10, 2006
Anonymous said... you suck 12:47 AM, January 11, 2006
Anonymous said... because dan coffey is an idiot 3:48 PM, January 11, 2006
Anonymous said... eat shit potty patrol 9:13 PM, January 12, 2006
Now, I ask you, what is the point of being so obnoxiously rude and ugly? If they don’t agree with, or don’t like the way we do things on SOLNA, they could just avoid coming to this site. Only, they won’t do that. Despite our requests to stop interfering with the SOLNA blog, as well as our outright banning of them multiple times, they just keep coming back and taking swings at us.
Why? Because evidently we are perceived, by them, as a threat to Mayor Garner’s credibility and the way the current City administration is being run.
A threat because we are demanding answers and accountability.
This blog is for the people and by the people. People who want answers, and people who want to know just what is, and what is not, happening with our money. People who are upset with the deterioration of the City they have witnessed from the homes they have lived in for decades. People who have watched as neighbor after neighbor leaves town for better surroundings, and renters move in. Neighborhoods deteriorate, property values plummet, and drug sales escalate. People who want to know how their City is being managed. After all, they are being asked to withstand rate hikes, new fees, and the use of their property taxes to back bonds for a project they didn’t even get to vote on.
Speak Out Loud NA did not start the discontent of people of the inner-city feel. We simply gave it an avenue of release. SOLNA is an electronic means of civic activism. Plain and simple, we want to know what’s going on.
We are not the ‘blog press’ that Volunteer Hoosier claims to be by reporting news and information regarding the City’s activities. We don’t have a pipeline to the Mayor’s office as Randy Smith apparently does.
In fact, Randy tipped his hand in his latest posting by giving information about a budget that hasn’t yet been officially received by the City. A budget that no Council Member has seen, and yet Randy knows there is a separate fund in the budget that the salaries in question are being paid from. He accuses me of lying, in so far as we questioned the preservation of these jobs after the first of the year due to the fact that their salaries were mandated by Council resolution to be paid from Stormwater revenues, and not out of the sewer fund.
Since no Stormwater fees have been assessed or collected, we naturally assumed there would be no money in this new pot to pay these folks.
I don’t care if there is a separate fund their salaries are being “charged to”, we want to know what fund is being raided to pay them until the Stormwater fee indeed gets ramped up and begins collecting funds. Answers PLEASE!
This has been a major rub with the public. The misappropriations of funds, the borrowing and shuffling, has all led to a very fuzzy fiscal picture, and absolutely no idea what shape some departments are in financially. That is unacceptable.
Returning to the main issue at hand here, we are simply a different kind of blog than “Volunteer Hoosier”, who claims to be a news reporting electronic press. We find that one rather hard to swallow, but if that’s what he wants to call it, then have at it. In any instance, we do not deserve to be assailed, insulted, or slandered for seeking answers that we do not have.
We are also very different than “New Albany Confidential”, which covers many other topics such as beer, pubs, European vacations, and street spam, in between “satires” of the SOLNA blog and the egotistical manner by which Roger Baylor berates the intelligence of the readers and participants of SOLNA.
Notice that we do not go over to their blogs and wreak havoc on their opinions and attempt to wrangle their integrity with obnoxious statements of a personal nature. We most often ignore, and dismiss their assaults, but they have now crossed a line that is just going way too far. Calling me a liar is an outright attempt to shut me up and diminish my character. It is highly objectionable, and it is a false allegation.
We are a forum for civic activism, and we will be the watchdog group that will hound this Mayor about every bad decision he makes. Not because we don't like the man, or because we don't like his politics, but because we love New Albany, and we don't want to see it sink further into disrepair and go under financially. For any of the acclaimed economic development to occur, we MUST fix the inner-city sewers. This is also something we are under a Federal mandate to get done. Where's the money?
We will continue to push on with our mission of getting answers to the myriad of questions that remain unanswered, and our demands of accountability from the administration. Like it or not, that is our right as citizens, and we have no intentions of doing things any differently than we have been thus far.
Every blog out there has its place and its purpose. We are only one of many, but the involvement of the community speaks to the need and the appreciation of our blog.
Don't worry folks, we will continue to fight the good fight.