Sunday, October 20, 2013

Cincinnati City Council races 2013 - This Race is yours to lose!

Secret weapon to win a seat on Cincinnati City Council and become Cincinnati’s Next Mayor in 2013
Who’s winning and who’s losing, and why?
Dear Council Candidate:
I have some good and bad news.  Here’s the bad news first, if you are reading this you are losing! That’s right, you are a candidate who is running a failing campaign.  How do I know that? Because according to a recent poll (which may be off by 6% percentage points) you are not in the top three spots for Cincinnati Council seats, and how do I know?  Is your name Charlie Winburn, P.G. Sittenfeld, or gag me with a really big spoon and throw me off the Purple People Bridge, Christopher Smitherman?
If not, why is your campaign failing?  Take ownership! You own it, not your campaign manager, and not your paid or volunteer staff.
Smitherman is quite possibly the most dangerous council person, because he won’t work with you, and he won’t speak to you at council meetings. The only people who Christopher Smitherman speaks to are Chris Finney, Winburn and Sittenfeld. The other two of the top three on council, and Finney.
Look up there again at the top three names, and while you are at it go ahead and slap yourself and ask your campaign manager to kick you in the butt.
Sittenfeld is the people’s candidate because he’s always on the move, working for the people, and he has out-campaigned all of you. Winburn has out-campaigned and out- fundraised you, and one can’t help but like Charlie, even though he’s on the wrong side of the track on so many issues. And Smitherman? Well, he’s out smarted, out-campaigned you, and left yout ass out backwards.
Voters deserve better than an arrogant council person that won’t speak to his colleagues.

 Each of you deserve to be in the losing spot that you are in. For some of you that means not returning to Council and for the hopefuls, it means not getting a seat on Council.
I know that’s a lot of bad news, but now here’s some really, really, good news.  I don’t care what the polls say, and I don’t care how many stories are written in that rag masquerading as a newspaper - this race is each and every one of yours to lose and you can thank me later with a balloon bouquet for giving you the winning strategy – in -  my Jerry Maguire-esque letter that I will dub FBK’s Strategy Guide:  How to win a seat on Cincinnati City Council.
When I post this you will have 15 days to win.  Let’s count 1, 2, 3, 4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15.
I can write a book in less than 15 days (in fact I wrote one in 4 days) about the evilness of Smitherman.  But I digress, because this isn’t about my dislike of Smitherman’s policies and his disregard for the AfricanAmerican community. It’s actually about my love for my community and my desire to see good candidates get elected to City Council.  I don’t think any candidate if elected will show as much disdain for the African American community as Smitherman. Therefore I feel obligated to share this strategy with you because if Smitherman wins, we all lose.
Especially, African Americans, and the most vulnerable, marginalized Cincinnati residents.
While I can’t speak for everyone in the above listed groups, I can tell you that as a grassroots activist and advocate in the trenches, people from the most neglected communities in the 52 neighborhoods, are hurting because they can’t find work, can’t get a city contract because of pass-through companies, can’t get their streets repaired, and don’t feel safe.  They don’t give a rat’s behind about stopping the progressive streetcar in which voters have voted to support two times, and they trust (OK, maybe pray) that those they’ve elected will continue or begin to make the right decision regarding leasing the parking meters.

What people from these groups care most about is having a candidate like Yvette Simpson who will love-on-our youth, i.e. continue to be a strong advocate for the youth.  They care about having a candidate like Chris Seelbach who understands the importance of voting yes on an ordinance that offers city residents training and good paying jobs.
They care about electing candidates like Kevin Johnson, Mike Moroski, Vanessa White, or Greg Landsman, who understand that all 52 neighborhoods matter.
We need council candidates that understand that there is no “I” in team.  Smitherman is not a team player. He’s charismatic, he’s articulate, and oh yeah,  he pals around with those that bankroll every social and economic injustice on the African American community, on the gay community, on women, and on children.  Yes, when Coast sued CPS schools, that’s bankrolling our children’s demise.
Here is my winning strategy. Feel free to send me a balloon bouquet and candy as a way of saying thanks.
Wining strategies for winners.
Procure $25,000 and start running TV commercials. 
I don’t care what you have to do to get the money, if it’s legal do it.  Take out a loan, beg relatives and friends, get a part-time job stripping at night, sell one of your kidneys and start running commercials on the TV.  TV commercials will get you a spot on Council.
Fire your volunteers, and then hire them back as paid staff.
Some of you candidates should be ashamed to ask someone to volunteer and work for you.  You’ve been absent in the communities, or the only time you’ve come to the community, is when you want something.  Stop wanting and start giving. Why are your volunteers wearing old clothes, and wrinkled t-shirts?  Their look reflects you. They probably look so broken, because they are broke and they can’t keep working for free.  Fire them, then hire them, then train them on what you expect.

Build brand Democrat.
Democrats do a lousy job with messaging.  Local and National Democrats have lost the message war.  The biggest conversation being had in the news media was manufactured by Coast and that plutocrat Chris Finney.
Why is the streetcar and parking still the number one conversation driving this election?  Whether you are for the streetcar and the parking, matters not because that cookie is baked, and the voters voted twice to bring a streetcar to Cincinnati and Council voted to support the parking lease plan.  Respect the voters John Cranley, and tell your Vice Mayor choice, Smitherman, to do the same.
There are other pressing issues for council candidates to focus on like the nearly bankrupt pension, joblessness, pass-through contractors, and shameful low minority inclusion rates. Talk about the aforementioned issues in the news media; drive that conversation car. Get that message out by any means necessary.  Ask your friends, family and paid staff (you’re firing your volunteers remember) to write letters to that thing masquerading as a newspaper, to make comments on the TV station’s blog, to call Lincoln Ware’s show – ask these people to get your campaign message out, your brand out, by any means necessary. 
Candidates, remind yourselves of the reason that you decided to run for public office in first place.  Most of you decided to run for some noble reason. What was it?
You knew that the day that you decided to run that it would probably be one of the hardest things that you’ve ever done in your life, and that there would be long days and sleepless nights. That your life would become an open book and that if you had a penny for every time a voter stated, “They (meaning you) don’t do nothing,” you would be very rich.
It’s OK to get tired candidates and to give out, but never give up.  If you are spending 12 hours a day campaigning, slap yourself and have your campaign manager kick you in the butt, because you need to be spending twice that amount of time.  That’s right 24-7 you need to be campaigning in these next 15 days. 
Failure is not an option and it’s not too late to raise brand awareness for your campaign and your party. 
That’s right I said Gangbang.  Gangbang Christopher Smitherman’s motherfuckin’ ass. Ever since Smitherman returned to Council he has slapped his fellow council people upside the head and kicked them in the rump.  He talks bad about his colleagues on hate radio.
He hates on you all in press releases. He talks about you behind your backs and to NAACP members.  He beer summits with groups that hate you all and you all sit back and take it. Stand up for yourself, because standing up for yourself is standing up for the people!  If all you candidates got together and bought a commercial and ads against Smitherman, he would not be polling in the number three spot. In fact, his ass might not even make it back on Council which would leave an open spot for a candidate that you can work with.  So what are you waiting for Dems?  Put on your blue t-shirts on and crip walk Smitherman to the unemployment line.
Grow a personality. I know that a few of you don’t like Sittenfeld - shut up! I’ve heard the rumors that you are jealous of him, and I know a whole lot more of you really just can’t stand Winburn.  Also, I personally and nearly all of you, don’t like Smitherman’s politricks, but the reason they occupy the top three spots is because of their personalities…although Smithermans’ is only charming to those he intends to con and use. Nevertheless, a few of you are impersonal. Voters are aware of which candidates never try to connect with people in certain communities except when they are running for political office, and then they want to kiss babies and walk grandma across the street. But then it’s too late because they have developed a reputation as being a mean or fake candidate. We voters know which of you goes into the same coffee shop everyday and never speaks. We know which candidate walked right past the Avondale youth council and didn’t speak. We know which candidate truly does not like black people according to his rich Indian Hill friends. We know.

That’s right, I said put out a hit on Christopher Smitherman in the form of Nate Livingston.  Trust me, nobody hits it better than Nate.  I know. I know. Nate has a job working out of state, but if the price is right, he might come down for the weekend and raise a thousand dollars’ worth of hell.  I know. I know. Nate has given a few of you hell. But that doesn’t matter. What matters is that you are losing and you want to win.  If you just can’t do Nate (and by the way maybe he can’t do you either), then go find yourself a hell raiser! Even If you have to go and knock on the devil’s door, get somebody that knows how to rally the activists and the agitators (and according to the NAACP handbook, agitation is good) when seeking change that is a good cause.
Finally, dear Council candidate, repeat after me, this race is yours to lose, because you’ve already won.  Really you have your coveted council seat awaits you. Please accept this Stop Smitherman Sticker as a small token of my appreciation for your service.

For more tips on how to Stop Smitherman, read this book.

FBK is an unapologetic black writer who often finds it necessary to keep it real with issues that pertain to politics and race and she wants you to GOOGLE JOE DETERS.