Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Lies, damn lies, and "No on W" ads

You can skip this posting if you don't live in Redwood City (climate best by government test).

Measure "W" in the upcoming general election would require a 2/3 majority to change any "open space" land to permit other uses. Developers don't like this measure because land that remains open space isn't land they could develop, sell, and make a ton of money from. Realtors don't like the measure because land that can't be developed or sold also can't pay them any commissions.

Notice anything about these groups of people? They stand to make less money -- maybe lots less money -- if the voters approve measure W. Therefore, they've decided to invest some money to defeat it. According to this article in the Redwood City Daily News,
DMB Associates, the Arizona firm hired to draw up a development plan for 1,433 acres in Redwood City owned by Cargill Inc. ... contributed nearly $692,000 to the "No on W" campaign, including $113,000 in staff time, records show.
Besides the $692,000 from an Arizona firm, there's another $400,000 from various sources: Oracle Corp., a group of realtors, unions....

By way of contrast, Save the Bay (the "Yes on W" team) have spent about $331,000.

So where do the "No on W" folks get off talking about some Oakland outfit trying to take over Redwood City? Sheesh! I mean for gosh sakes, look at the money! "Save the Bay" have spent less than half the amount that one out-of-state group contributed to the "No on W" campaign.

And if you look at the flyers and the print ads, it's clear that the "No on W" folks have more money. They have nice looking glossy ads. They have spent three times the money that the "Yes on W" team have. They have realtors, Oracle, and $692,000 from an Arizona outfit on their side.

They've outspent us 3:1. They have prettier brochures and more ads. Ads riddled with half-truths and outright lies (including "Big Lies"), but more of them regardless.

On the "Yes on W" side all we've got is volunteers and a few sympathetic friends from the Sierra Club. And the truth.

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