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Friday, April 24, 2009

In case you hadn't heard the sad news yet...; a story the media is ignoring

Below is a copy of an email that I sent out this
afternoon to folks near and far in the Sunshine
State, hoping to give some much-needed context
to a situation that, in my opinion, is not being
properly reported on by South Florida's media,
print and electronic.
__________________________________
April 24th, 2009
3:15 p.m.

This is the letter Comm. Suzanne Gunzburger
sent out yesterday as it appeared early today on
the Buddy Nevins website, Broward Beat:

Sent: Thu Apr 23 18:32:46 2009
Subject: Message from Commissioner Suzanne Gunzburger
From: Suzanne Gunzburger


Dear All,


I have just lost my beloved husband Gerry today after

a short illness. We were together 49 wonderful years.

The services will be Sunday, March 29, at 1:00 P.M. at

Temple Beth El, 1351 S. 14th Avenue, Hollywood Fl.

We shall be sitting Shiva through Tuesday evening,

from 2 until 9 P.M.

Sue

Sue and Gerry Gunzburger

---------------------------------
Back on April 9th, in response to something I'd
previously written to many of you the week before,
about the absurd antics of the Broward County
Courthouse Taskforce, having previously dropped
me a line or two about the subject and my concerns,
Comm.Gunzburger wrote back, in part, "I can
not help you further, as I have been at home
for over 2 weeks dealing with a family medical crisis"...


As some of you may recall me telling you in person
over the past few months, a lot of associates and
political supporters of Steve Geller have been
engaging in a classic whispering campaign for
months, telling attendees at various civic events
throughout the Broward and South Florida area
-ones that I've personally attended- that long
before the much-anticipated, expensive,
media-intensive and fireworks-filled campaign for
the November 2010 election for the Broward County
Comission seat she currently holds
-representing us- that Comm. Gunzburger
would drop-out of the race entirely,
leaving Geller as the only candidate, owing
to either fund-raising or health problems.


At the time, the fact that South Florida's media,
especially the local newspapers and their own
blogs, didn't pick-up on this and publicly comment
on this obvious intimidation tactic being employed
so far in advance of any real campaign, much less,
the media not publicly commenting on who was
saying it, really made me... well, quite angry,
even though, obviously, I don't agree with
Comm. Gunzburger and her vote on every
issue or policy matter.


To me, this rather pointed media error of
omission only reinforced my own belief that
South Florida's media has become SO
addicted to using Geller as sort of a
one-stop source for pithy political/govt.
quotes and observations, for all
occasions -likely. just as many
anonymously as those he is actually
credited with, and he's already THE
most-quoted Broward-based pol by far-
only further supported the general
proposition that, whatever else he is,
as I've seen first-hand, Steve Geller
is a manipulative, blowhard of a bully,
who, given what he has done and
whom he has represented in the past
as a lobbyist/lawyer, can NOT politically
afford to get into a fair fight with an
experienced opponent.


Especially an experienced opponent
who knows the local issues as well if
not better than him; who has 'resources'
matching his, if not exceeding them;
and who can raise as much if not more
campaign funds locally as Geller can
state-wide and nationally, thru his vast
network of big money lobbying and
pari-mutuel interests, whose water he
has faithfully carried for years.


For instance, thru loyal and dependable
pals like Dan Adkins of the Mardi Gras
Casino here in Hallandale Beach, which
gave Geller's Committee of Continuing
Existence beaucoup bucks right after it
was formed, which then gave some of that
money to his brother Joe's campaign last
year when he ran for Dan Gelber's old
State House seat based out of Miami Beach
last November, when Gelber ran and was
elected to the State Senate.


Knowing that he might NOT win if things
stayed static, I believe that Steve Geller
has tried to shake things up and level the
playing field for himself by looking for ways
to preliminarily soften-up Suzanne
Gunzburger, by initiating a whispering
campaign that would have the practical
effect of causing people in the community
who are generally inclined to support her
now, as they have in the past,
to hesitate before either sending her a
campaign check or publicly supporting
her, especially if there was a reasonable
chance that she would eventually drop-out.


Steve Geller and WFOR-TV's Michael Williams outside
of Hallandale Beach City Hall, May 7, 2008, from my
post of May 15th, 2008,
(Obviously, I hadn't fixed my camera date button yet.)

William "Boss" Tweed (c. 1871).
William "Boss" Tweed (c. 1871).
Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University


In my opinion, Geller, smart as he is, is likely
betting that by introducing the element of a
shadow of a doubt to her campaign, people's
own egos will prevent them from actually doing
what they are already inclined to do:
support Sue Gunzburger publicly and/or
writing campaign checks to her, for fear
of later being seen as not only insufficiently
in-the-loop, but also being seen as on
the wrong side of Steve Geller,
powerful County Commissioner.

He is, in effect, trying to freeze people,
money and resources into place, by
introducing a shadow of a doubt into their
political calculations.

That he and his supporters are, in fact,
the very ones responsible for introducing
the doubt publicly, largely but not entirely
sotto voce, is something that he clearly
believes is a good calculated risk here,
given that this fact will not be revealed
publicly until it is too late in the campaign
to really matter to voters, which, sadly,
he is probably quite right about.

He is trying to introduce a shadow
of a doubt into everyone's political
calculations!

Manipulating facts and impugning others
behind-the-scenes are long-favored tactics
of Steve Geller's, as I've chronicled on
my blog and as we've all read and heard
for years, so it should hardly be surprising
that many of his go-to supporters and
water-carriers are perfectly fine with those
particular tactics, too.

I mean it's not like Steve Geller is running
on a platform that's pro-reform, or that's
focused on smaller govt. or more
accountability in that govt., is he?
Nope!!!

He wants to continue to be able to legally
lobby municipal officials and employees
for his clients, but this time, from the
vantage point of a Broward County
Commissioner's seat located here, not
a State Senator's seat in Tallahassee,
that for many voters and businesses
is largely out-of-sight, out-of-mind.

According to many well-informed people
I've spoke to over the past year who've thus
far proven reliable on these sorts of things,
often at events where the very whispering
campaign was taking place, Buddy
Nevins of BrowardBeat.com, a former
Sun-Sentinel writer whom I had never
heard of before returning to the area
from D.C., is said by many to be but
one of many in that Geller Legion,
which is fine, since that's his personal
choice and he can hold it if he wants.
(But perhaps that fact should inform
your own opinion when you read
things at his website in the future,
or read what's already been written
there, oui?)

Given the sad news yesterday, I can't
help but wonder in retrospect if the
"health problems" that were being
alluded to by Geller supporters, as
a possible reason for her deciding
in the future not to run for re-election,
were not, in fact, her own health
problems in the future, but rather
those of her husband?

Obviously, I'm in no position to say
with certainty, and the Geller folks
who were, in fact, whispering about
'health problems' could hardly admit
that NOW, even if it was true,
but it does seem consistent with
Geller's general M.O.:
to often use mis-direction or
employ minions to effect a
ricochet shot, while appearing
to know nothing about it.

Just thought you'd like to know
and have the benefit of some context.

------------------------------------------------
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Broward Politics blog
County Commissioner Sue Gunzburger's husband, Gerard, dies
By Anthony Man on April 23, 2009 05:45 PM

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