Shining bright lights on backroom deals in the NYC body politic.

Monday, November 14, 2005

A Public Forum?

Or Just More Goo-goo Gah-gah?

A very good thing is supposed to happen this Thursday evening. The seven Speaker candidates are to unite in a 2-hour debate on the issues of the day ... in public, no less. And for that, we commend them all!

But here at the Backroom Deal Breaker, we want to make sure that you too can have your say. For what is a public forum without a public?

When asked if our fellow Backroomies could submit questions to the upcoming debate, we got a big fat NO along with a good-idea-though pat on the back. We also got a dose of an unfortunate we-know-best reality. Here's what a Citizens Union rep for the so-called public forum had to say:

As for questions, we may open the floor to questions from the audience. As you can imagine with 7 candidates time is tight and we want to make sure we touch on a variety of themes.

I love the idea of making the connection to the internet community and having them submit questions. This is something we will look into for future events.

So here's our solution:

First, we invite Backroomies to either post any questions you'd like to have asked in the comments section, or email them confidentially to publicsway@yahoo.com. We'll then make sure they get in front of the appropriate eyeballs.

Second, we encourage Citizens Union (and the host of other goo-goos associated with this event) as well as the oft-quoted moderator, Professor Doug Muzzio, to rethink the public's involvement in this public forum. This is your opportunity - as good government groups - to practice what you preach by showcasing what the words public involvement really mean.

52 Comments:

Anonymous Dirty Laundry said...

Yeah, I'd like to know what else each of the Speaker candidates could be doing individually to make this a more public process?

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

why does this not surprise me?

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Blogger bklyndem said...

Term limits, Where do they stand on term limits.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't get me wrong, I really like what you guys are doing here but isn't it a bit hypocritical for you guys to blast the Citizens Union for not being transparent when we, the readers, don't even know who you are? Is it hypocritical for me to ask this question and then post it anonymously? Yes.

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Blogger Backroom Deal Breaker said...

To 1:39PM:

a) No one is forcing you to read this blog; b) Though we're pursuing what we consider better governance, we're not making ourselves out to be a good government group; and c) It is our assertion, as you exemplified by anonymously posting your question, that the ability to remain anonymous is central to the untethered discourse that our democracy requires.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think 1:39 is a little rough on you. It's not as if you, or Citizens Union, for that matter, are actually relevant to the process in the slightest.

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I'd like to know if they plan on pushing for reforming the Campaign Finanace Board so if in four years we have another extremely wealthy individual who wants to run for office that the race will be more competitive.

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