Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Beware the mechanical Dawn Clark Netsch

Dawn Clark Netsch is full of beans.

I just got a dystopian robocall from her saying that Vi Daley "listens to the community, because she knows your voice counts." That is such utter nonsense.

The reason I and everyone else is running is that Vi Daley doesn't listen to the community. What Dawn is saying is essentially a bald-faced lie. I had the greatest honor and respect for Dawn Clark Netsch until 10 minutes ago.

I was there when Dawn Clark Netsch got her start in politics. I was with her at her first campaign office on Eugenie. I licked stamps for her, carried signs for her. She was an idealist then. Dawn is not really here anymore, not really thinking about what the ward or the city really needs. She just called to bail out an old pal, Vi Daley.

I was there when Marty Oberman got his start in politics. Marty is no longer really here, either. He just wants a puppet in office, and he's had to stretch her grotesquely and unbelievably to make her appear to be a true people person, sensitive to any other issues besides development, because she is nothing more than a tool for Marty's development agenda.

I ran into Dawn last summer in Streeterville and asked if she would consider supporting me. I didn't really expect her to say yes right away, but I didn't expect her to shill for Vi Daley.

Who else is shilling for Vi Daley? Beryl Clemens, for the senior citizens. Alan Mellis and the rest of the cabal, for homeowners. Who's shilling for Michele Smith? Marty Oberman. They're all fakes. These people they are crafting are as robotic as the recordings you are listening to.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dawn Clark is a joke. Even her husband doesn't buy into her politics.

1:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

3:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We've written a lot about the internet insurgency and it's ability to sniff out bullshit endorsements and stale, stiff, canned, and manufactured support.

The grass roots and associated internet insurgency has a monopoly on authenticity and incumbents, by definition, have no claim on it.

Whose opinions hold more weight? A has-been politician's, or your neighbors' and friends'?

3:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Every candidate in this race has followed the law by filling campaign disclosures--- except Peter Zelchenko. What is your fine up to now, thousands? In the grand scheme of things, you’re lack of compliance doesn’t matter much. But the sad irony is that as you so often lament others with your self- righteous tirades, you've proven that you are no better, and probably even worse, showing no regard for transparency and integrity, let alone the law. You're with out a doubt the worst hypocrite that that I’ve ever come across.

8:21 PM  
Blogger Peter Zelchenko said...

I haven't raised or spent the $3,000 necessary to qualify as a committee. I'm arguing with them right now as to whether I should even be required to file. My argument is that technically, I'm not a committee even though I filed a D-1. They are arguing that I am a committee because I filed a D-1, but that's not the way the law reads.

9:23 PM  
Anonymous Charles Eastwood said...

Peter, I may have had a modicum of appreciation in the positions you've represented as a candidate for alderman. That is all lost. I will come out here as Ald. Daley's Chief of Staff, I respect your opposing point of view on the Lincoln Ave SSA. But your attacks on Vi are way way off base, but she's a candidate, and you dream about having her job, so there it is. But when you choose to attack Dawn Clark Netsch, you have gone way too far in my book. Dawn's positions on state gov, educ funding, and our tax system are still very relevant today. And I know Dawn and Walter's issues as residents in the 43rd Ward. They are still here. They do call our office and participate in the community. I look forward to visiting with her every year, standing in line in our office on City Sticker Day. You attack Beryl, Allan and everyone else who truly are relevant in this ward, or the cabal as you call them. I'm proud to be a part of this ward or cabal. You are a jerk (sorry it's late no other non-profane creative word comes to mind). You have done nothing in this campaign, other than attack Vi and other neighborhood people. I will argue with you any issue, any day, in the 43rd Ward. Don't riducule the Honorable Dawn Clark Netsch, and post her photo on the same page where you proudly displayed a photo of defecation. That photo of shit really strikes me as what I think of you, Michele Smith and Marty Oberman. I am very proud to have served Dawn and Vi. Why don't you clean up your folk's front yard on Lincoln Avenue and really do something on behalf of the 43rd Ward. Thank goodness or thank Vi for the SSA so I can walk on your sidewalk this year without slipping on ice/snow. Tell me who are your supporters? I don't know anyone. You have done nothing in this campaign other than insult true leaders in this neighborhood, and, now a true leader in the State of Illinois. I can only imagine that it was probably Walter on the post you deleted, probably really gave you "what for". We are fortunate in the 43rd Ward to have representatives like Dawn and Vi. I am truly regret I feel compelled to spend my time addressing you, but certain attacks cannot go unanswered.

1:54 AM  
Blogger Peter Zelchenko said...

Chuck, I respect you very much. I've told you before that I would keep you and all others on staff if elected, although I don't know if you'd stay.

I also like Vi, Barb, Dawn, Beryl, Allan, Marty, and everyone else who has been involved in our community. I like them very much as friends. However, I very strongly disagree that they are contributing to the overall health of the community. They are the cabal, and they cater to their own interests and shut out democracy.

Beryl Clemens, posing as a leader of the Halsted senior building, told me last year I had to cook New Year's breakfast for the residents if I wanted to meet with them. I couldn't just talk to them. I and other candidates still haven't been able to meet with them, though Vi has.

Allan Mellis and Jeffrey Kwiat of WNA went behind closed doors, excluded Lincoln Avenue residents from a private meeting the night before the hearing for the Lincoln Avenue SSA. They endorsed Vi's tax for Lincoln Avenue residents that they themselves don't have to pay. That's audacious, since their Wrightwood Neighbors Association has derived millions in benefit from their use of our street every summer. And we don't get any of it.

I've heard stories all over the ward how Vi and the 43rd Ward cabal run roughshod over the democratic process here. I still like you, but you're not being nearly as democratic as most residents want. In this context, it's no wonder that Vi has four challengers and that every one of them has committed, as a key platform plank, to expand the democratic process in the ward by instituting some form of community council. It dilutes the awesome power wielded by the cabal.

Now you might begin to understand why Dawn Netsch is at best out of touch. She didn't ask any of us for our opinion. She hasn't been to one single community forum. She just acceded to a request from Vi's campaign to announce, without foundation, how wonderful Vi is to the democratic process. Dawn is a good person, but she lacks the authority to speak on this topic. I'd be honored to debate Dawn on it head to head, if Vi won't do it. And I know I'd win.

As to Lincoln Avenue, since you don't live there and haven't ever seen me out there, I'll forgive you for not understanding how hard I work to keep the block clean. Ask Wally Reid. I clean trash out of our bushes every couple of weeks, but it's overwhelming. It was absolutely inappropriate for Vi to force residents to pay the majority of funds into the SSA for all of the things that the businesses should be paying for. That's Vi's anti-democratic nature: "We're not going to debate this, Peter." That's what she told me when I said we needed to talk about the SSA process. Not even the president of the SSA denies that the process was totally undemocratic.

As to snow cleanup, why don't you ask the president of the Lincoln Avenue SSA, my neighbor Susan Keegan, who's been shoveling her sidewalk for years after every snowfall? It's me, Chuck.

You can't ever accuse me of doing nothing, because it's simply not true.

You'll notice that I don't censor your words. You're always welcome to rebut this.

11:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Peter may or may not be rough around the edges, but it's not his record that's on trial in this election. Your comments clearly demonstrate that you and Vi just don't get it in a fundamental way.
"Dawn Clark Netsch"..."Beryl, Allan and everyone else who truly are relevant in this ward"
The fact is that the average citizen does not think that these people are any more or any less relevant than the rest of us. You say they are leaders, we say they are nothing but legends in their own minds. The majority are not happy that Vi represents only her little clique. It's a big reason that this community is divided. That and the fact that one never knows where Vi stands.

And one more thing,..."every year, standing in line in our office on City Sticker Day". What kind of customer service is that? Has it never occured to you that we don't want to make a special trip and stand in line to get a stupid sticker? The vehicle stickers and the parking permit stickers expire on the same date, but you can't buy one until you've already received the other. Consequently, my parking permit sticker arrived 2 months late. Thanks Chuck for such foresight.

11:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Suddenly, after 8 years in office, it has dawned on Vi Daley's staff that they can communicate to us over the internet. How they keep up with this stuff, I just don't know.

11:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chuck Eastwood,

Your comments show how vulnerable you are and what little control Vi has over her staff.

5:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Eastwood,
As a constituent who has been watching this election and reading online communications with interest, I would like to let you know how disappointed I am that my first acquaintance with Ms. Daley's chief of staff is one in which he compares her opponents and others to excrement. I'm frankly disgusted by the level of such unprofessional discourse, though not entirely surprised, as my impression that voters and voices in this community are uniformly dismissed by the current powers that be has just been confirmed...

11:02 AM  
Anonymous Charles Eastwood said...

OK, this is why I don't do this. We try to arrive at well thought out decisions in the alderman's office. Anonymous attacks by self-interested parties do not contribute to that. I bet I know most of the people commenting here, but you won't disclose your identities.

Peter, I appreciate your considerate words toward me, Barb, Allan, Beryl. No I would not stay on as your chief of staff. I think that would be a very different office. I don't believe that actively involved citizens should be riduculed as a cabal.

What I don't really appreciate are your inconsiderate words toward Vi and Dawn. It was late as it is now. I commit much of my life to the 43rd Ward, the alderman's office and Vi's campaign, but no she doesn't have control of me at 2 a.m, particularly when I read your attacks on the Honorable Dawn Clark Netsch. I'm a voter in this ward too.

Your comments about Dawn were ageist, off-base and wrong. They made me angry. Every candidate would have savored her endorsement, and sought it. We're proud to have it, and Vi deserves it. My point was not only is Dawn relevant in the big political issues such as taxation and education funding, but she and Walter are participants in our community. They are constituents, and we can tell you their issues, unlike you or any other candidate in this race.

For the anonymous person who tried to make something about my comment on City Sticker Day, well, I can guess who you are too. Since Vi has been alderman our office has made accessible the purchase of parking permits and city stickers everyday. But there are a few days including a Saturday during the June renewal time when the Clerk comes and sells stickers at our office. That's when Dawn chooses to take care of her business. I find it charming that the most honorable Dawn Clark Netsch who does not drive, stands in line to buy Walter's sticker. It's an occasion that I know I will be able to visit with her and discuss City issues, politics, St. Michael's, dogs and other neighborhood issues. As we do with hundreds of people those days. She or anyone else can do that any other time as well.

Our office has done much to provide information via the internet and increase email communication. I do not find much value in participating in a blog other than responding to critics who are going jump back all over us. So have at it guys.

The excrement reference, well it was on your blog, and I was personally offended that you would post a photo of my friend Dawn Clark Netsch, someone this ward highly regards, on the same page as that. I thought it said a lot about you, especially when you have not really kept your site up to the pace of the campaign. So after the shit post, you didn't wake up until Dawn called? Well my anger at your statement, and I've never commented any other time, pulled me into your mire.

I do look forward to your continued, continued being key word, unlike other candidates except Rachel, involvement in the 43rd Ward after February 27.

2:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

People get defensive when their critics hit the mark.

7:48 AM  
Blogger Peter Zelchenko said...

Chuck, I can't speak for the anonymous posters here, but everyone's civility is degraded here, including yours - so you've got no kick coming.

Chuck, I knew Dawn Clark Netsch before you were even born. I'm only a little older than you, but I worked on her campaigns when you were in diapers, and I worked far harder than you might imagine a pre-teen might. Kids weren't as sheltered in those days, and I remember spending many hours in her office doing office work, and blitzing when I was older.

Since then, she's never even gave me the time of day. She's never acknowledged my contributions to the city, nor do I imagine she's read my credentials and understands my point of view here. That's totally apparent from her lame endorsement of Vi.

Dawn is a person. She's not any more "honorable" than you or I. I think it's a little much to use that honorific every time you state her name, as if she were some saint.

Dawn and Walter are prone to the same failings and achievements as we are. I'm not perfect, they're not perfect. They have wonderful qualities, as do you, Beryl, Vi, and everyone else in our circle of 43rd Ward people.

In Dawn's case, she's all wet about endorsing your boss. She doesn't know what she is talking about. Vi Daley excludes most of the 43rd Ward in community decision-making process. If you learn nothing else in this election cycle, you will learn, to the last vote, that you can't deny that.

As to my inability to post on this blog on a regular schedule, that's a symptom of my having a campaign that is not as well funded as yours. You have hundreds of thousands of dollars. I have less than $10,000. That means I am doing most of the work myself. You, Michele, and Tim have outspent me 100 to one, and yet I'm still a serious threat to all of you. That must say something about what I am doing.

10:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Less than 20% of the people who should vote will
in this election. They are too, too busy and only
have time to write a check or make a nasty
phone call when something displeases them...
usually a concern as wide as their lot line
or potential profit margin. That puts a burden on
public officials to gauge sentiment and they
look to voices that seem to be consistent and
reliable. Community Groups are not cabals Peter.
They are made up of people like you, Rachel,
Michele and Tim. Except none of you bothered
to get involved in your community group or only
joined symbolically once you announced.
The threat to neighborhoods is being taken over
by a short-term agenda that will allow even more plundering of this desirable area with
no thought to what comes after they have their fill. You lost your focus in this election. It was City Hall. But instead you raged on a tangent and did
a big dis-service to volunteers and even named
names of people...hammer the raised nail
volunteer's head. That's fair. No other Ward race
has seen community groups become villians.
The real Cabal, Big Powerbrokers, loves to see
you shooting grassroots activisim in the foot.
You have a healthy skepticism on many things
but on the issue of communitiy groups you are
dangerously way off. Instead of devaluing
community involvement you should have praised
it and called for more because it's your history.
You have contributed more to negativism than any other candidate because you gave cover to other
candidates who have never been active to blindly chime in. Candidates should inspire voters.

12:36 PM  
Anonymous union label said...

"...on the issue of communitiy groups you are dangerously way off. Instead of devaluing community involvement..."

And that's the point: community groups DO NOT EQUAL community involvement! The neighborhood associations which Vi relies upon for input represent a small, self-selected, & self-perpetuating element in the ward. How many times have we seen creative, concerned, and eager new faces show up at a few meetings only to eventually, once they realize the "leadership" doesn't really want to include their suggestions in the concensus, drift off into some more welcoming & inclusive means of staying involved.

That is the problem/lesson that Peter is referring to - one that he, Rachel, Michele, & Tim all recognize and acknowledge. Hopefully our next alderman, whether Vi or a challenger, will actively encourage & seek participation from all constituents: recently arrived & long-timers, young & old, active at their church & active in OTTA, rich & poor, democrat & republican, etc. - and not require a certain type of orthodox, old-school involvement. Otherwise, the next aldermanic election will be even more interesting than this one.

4:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The last post was written by someone who
has not worked within a community day in/ day out. You sound all charged up for the short term.
You are probably being paid for your interest.
Your enthusiasm will likely end on Tuesday.
I bet you have never seen "new faces show up...
and drift off" in your community group.
I say this because it doesn't work that way.
How about people showing up only when they are
ready to sell and they don't disclose that? Or
those who try to persuade a community to sellout
on long-standing issues because it personally
will benefit them? How about oldtimers who have made a profit off of their area trying to dominate
what is supposed to be a not-for-profit group?
Yet these people are members of community groups and that is right...they just don't usually run them. And many leave frustrated. Good.
It takes restraint, patience and learned maturity
to stick around and work with your community.
Some people aren't interested in playing well with others.They are loners or don't work in groups.
It is incredibly stupid to make community
groups a target when most people don't even vote.
People disenfranchise themselves and then blame
those who are active. Human nature.
Special interests have other avenues-like money
to make their wishes known. You are dead
wrong to dismiss a community group as not representing a community...if it is a group of
too few voices then a wanna-be leader should urge participation. A scorched earth approach like
a "Planning Task Force" will only
be adding another platform for special interests
to swarm in and negate determined neighbors who know these people for what they are because
they are their neighbors.

Ironically a "Ward Wide Task Force" will have
a sad unintended effect...
it will be the death knell of community groups.
It is exactly what special intersts in 43 want.
A gulible, though well-intentioned candidiate
is looking for easy answers to sell voters. But
Peter you are just looking for inclusion.
So join in. But if you can't even get along in
your community how can you lead a Ward?

8:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The last post was written by someone who
has not worked within a community"

This attitude represents the problem with associations. The little groups that run them think of themselves as "the community". It's not possible to represent a community when you've never even surveyed the opinions of the residents.

8:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Little" groups are reflective of the little time
most people take to think about anything but
themselves and the "little" numbers of
people who will cast a ballot Tuesday. If you
want to change a group join it, if you have
an opinion about your community voice it,
if you have ideas contribute.
An uninvolved, self-absorbed population that
refuses to become part of the solution, doesn't
vote, then wants to blame volunteers for problems
is a sign of the "little" respect they have for
accepting responsibilty. Meetings are open,times
are posted for community groups. Attend.
Vote. Participate. But don't
blame others for the consequences of your
choices...or even worse, a lack of choice. Grow Up.

9:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When was the last time your group surveyed all the residents?

9:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am going to respond to this because it's
really good question. Thank you for asking it.
-members live here, we talk to our neighbors
- some board members are here for a while and
have perspective to view issues in context so they
build insitituional memory and know the standard
stock of concerns, cyclical issues and which ones
are truly new, we don't discount newcomers
-we have a website where people can comment
-we have open meetings
-we inform people of hearings and meetings
-we publish a newsletter and get comments back
-we hold an annual meeting and encourage new
board members with only minimal residency and
attendance requirements
-we talk to other community groups

If you mean by survey a funded, professionally-
driven canvass that would entail full-time activity
to gather and scientifically interpret with a plus/
minus margin of error then no, our nfp has not
in its 40 year history conducted such a survey.
Our on-going existance and open agenda is the survey in progress.
When would we do it? Summer when people are gone? Over the course of 6 months to a year? Which questions would be asked? In the 43rd Ward
special interests move quickly and know all the ropes to snake through the system. Meeting on
a monthly basis is a timely was to get feedback.
Volunteering is an exhausting and obviously thankless job, But it is rewarding.
Community groups and the individuals in them
stay on top of clout that seeks to remake our area
for its own purposes-on sidestreets and commerical areas. Many issues are the same
decade after decade. Who is leaving, who is
staying and what will these changes mean for
the next generation of residents and the city?
We voice concerns of average residents who
seek a quality of life and return for their taxes.
Idealized notions of feedback sound great but they
will be no more reflective of a non-participatory
population than any other forum. Well,there may
be one difference....it will be impossible to discern
agendas in the free-for-all being suggested by
completely clueless office seekers. Things of lasting value take time. Whether one seeks to begin a political career or find answers to real
problems in their neighborhood -you have to do
your homework, earn respect and let your true agenda show itself. If someone has the magic wand to make average people want to
get involved, go for it. In 30 years my experience
tells me you will not engage average taxpayers by
undercutting the only groups that are soley dedicated to their point of view whether they show
up or not.

10:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Advocates of neighborhood associations should develop a uniform code for association conduct. Our association has little resemblance to the one you describe. To at least a degree, it's been hijacked by zealots. Comments on the web site are not permitted. Letters to the editor of the newsletter are not published. The membership directory hasn't been made available to the members in about 5 years. There are two salaried administrators. One does actual administrative work, while the other is an opiniated, hard-core activist, propogandist, and gatekeeper. I could go on, but in a word, it is not inclusive.

I don't see our ward as being under siege by special interests, but rather, I see a healthy variety of routine, garden variety interests. Institutional memory is over rated. There are people that have been on a crusade for so long that it's become a life style, and they can't even remeber what their fighting for. Move on people. The urban renewal policies of the '60s are dead and gone.

2:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bill, I really wish you wouldn't insult Shirley Baugher either. Don't you have something productive to do like put siding on your house?

3:22 PM  

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