Daily Bread for 11.1.23: A Corruption in Real-Time Right Before Our Eyes

 Good morning.

Wednesday in Whitewater will be cloudy with a high of 40. Sunrise is 7:29 and sunset 5:46 for 10h 17m 05s of daytime. The moon is a waning gibbous with 84.8% of its visible disk illuminated.

  On this day in 1790, Edmund Burke publishes Reflections on the Revolution in France, in which he predicts that the French Revolution will end in a disaster. (He was right.) 

When we think of corruption, we think of bribery. The Ancients, however, saw corruption in a second way: as a falling away, a degeneration, from the proper form of an object or practice. It’s this second way in which this post considers corruption: as a degeneration from a proper form. The relationship would be something like the relationship between healthy cells and cancerous cells, where the latter is a deformed and degenerate version of the former. 

Look now at Whitewater, and one sees that on 10.17.23, the Whitewater Common Council rejected a request-for-proposal process to select a third attorney through public funds, and decided instead to allow one councilman to propose on his own three firms from which the council could choose. 

In its essence, to its very marrow, this is a corruption — a degeneracy — of a proper and responsible process. Councilman James Allen should not have been given this power and should not exercise this power.

Any firm that offers representation as one of Allen’s selections would be suspect: this is an abnormal process, ill-defined and contradictorily explained. No responsible attorney would take this work except through an RPF process regulated under law. See Allen’s Childish Pretexts.

Why this way and not an RFP? I believe that Allen’s in a hurry to get rid of this municipal administration before the April elections. Even the selection of a firm in December would be too far away for him.  See Councilman Allen’s Nebulous and Rushed Plan (“Yeah, going out to, uh [cross talk] with, uh, would extend things out to December”).

The four of the council majority did not run on overturning the municipal administration (not a peep!), but that’s what this libertarian blogger believes will happen if Allen gets his way. Allen would then become a de facto mayor, control the selection of the next city manager, and turn the Whitewater CDA over to a lobbyist and P.R. man. Those two would run affairs in a way favorable to landlords and bankers. That’s what would happen. 

Whitewater’s two leading public institutions, her council and her community development authority, would cease to be legitimate public institutions. See The Shape of Decline to Come (and How to Carry On) and ‘Gradually and Then Suddenly.’

Whitewater would become a small, foul southern town, under the control of a few. 

Needless to say, I’d rather not be right about this.

Yet look, yet look — this is a few working toward a corruption — the decline into an inferior form of government and policy in Whitewater — in real-time, right before our eyes.

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