Sunday, June 3, 2012

ALEC - At the Local Level in Minnesota

Three Rivers Park District
The mission of Three Rivers Park District is to promote environmental stewardship
through recreation and education in a natural resources-based park system.

Three Rivers Park District is a park system in the west suburban Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area of Minnesota. We manage almost 27,000 acres of park reserves, regional parks, regional trails, and special-use facilities. The name "Three Rivers" comes from our parks' geography, situated within the watersheds that flow into three significant rivers to this region: the Mississippi, the Minnesota and the Crow.

With facilities for every season, including picnicking, swimming, play areas, boating, fishing, downhill skiing, snowboarding, golfing, camping, and sledding, Three Rivers Parks is the place for recreation, play and relaxation. We have developed an extensive trail system for hiking, biking, in-line skating, horseback riding, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing. We also offer program sites for nature, recreation, historic, and farm education. The Park District serves eight million park guests per year.

It is an amazing park system that I use regularly.

Funding for the park system is provided through taxes, user fess and donations.

If you go to the webpage below you will find one of the Three Rivers Park District commissioners who is seeking re-election and he has his webpage up already for the upcoming November elections.

And he has a campaign FB page up also.
From his Facebook campaign page you will find the following information
Leader Involved in Our Community

Board Member and Past President, Hennepin County Library Board; Board Member, Ordway Center for the Performing Arts; Board Member Center of the American Experiment; Member, Minnesota Business Partnership; Former Member and Chair, Bloomington Charter Commission; Former Member and Chair, Bloomington Cable/Telecommunication Commission; Coach and Volunteer - various... BAA youth sports and activities; Member, Minnesota Police Pipe Band; Member, St. Edward's Catholic Church

Successful Professional and Businessperson

Vice President, Comcast (2003 - present), Partner, Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi (1994 -2003), Vice President, Continental Cablevision (1986 - 1994), Bloomington private practice attorney, Herbst & Thue Ltd, 1982 - 1986).

What you don’t find on those webpages is this information:

John Gibbs is a registered lobbyist with the state of Minnesota
Lobbyist data for:

Gibbs, John F
Comcast Cable Communications Inc
10 River Park Plz
St Paul, MN 55107
Telephone: (651)493-5050
Registration Number: 1339

John Gibbs title at work is:
Vice President of State Government Affairs

John Gibbs is a
Vice President at Comcast

John Gibbs is the
Minnesota State Private Chair for the American legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).

John Gibbs serves on the
ALEC Telecommunications & Information Technology Task Force

Because of his involvement in the Task Force –and as State Private Sector Chair – Mr. Gibbs probably goes to all the ALEC meetings.

Because he probably goes to all the meetings and interacts with other people there – Mr. Gibbs is well aware of the other ALEC policy and legislation.  The other ALEC "model" legislation that is passed in private meetings - most of it written by Corporate representatives.

ALEC meetings where they talk about:
Turn Capital Assets into Financial Assets:
Sell or Lease Government Assets and Enterprises

Privatization of government services

Privatization of government assets

In addition to that affiliation, Mr. Gibbs serves on the Board of the Center of the American Experiment
Center of the American Experiment is a nonpartisan, tax-exempt, public policy and educational institution that brings conservative and free market ideas to bear on the hardest problems facing Minnesota and the nation.

Since Center of the American Experiment opened shop in 1990, we have become the premier public policy organization in Minnesota. Today, we continue to be a major force driving Minnesota's transformation from a liberal, high tax, big government state toward a more conservative and free market future

Again – you see the theme of free markets, and less government.

Mr. Gibbs wants to be a public servant.
Public servants are elected to serve the public and protect the commons.
Public servants are not in office to protect and advance the needs of the private sector.

  In summary, most business people in public office cannot make the transition from thinking about short term profits and maximizing the self interests of businesses to thinking about acting in the best interests of all people, now and for future generations.  All of their decisions and actions are based on or around the concept of money and the pursuit of profit in the shortest time possible.   Concepts such as common interests, social justice, and long term economic and environmental sustainability are just not in their vocabulary.  As discussed in earlier parts of this article, their brains are not developed to think that way.

  Government is about operating society, not running a business to make money.  (For those who make the valid argument that government should not waste money and act more like a business that would never consider wasting money, that is an entirely different subject worthy of discussion).  Government is about fairness and requires cooperation. Actions are taken because they are right to do, not because they make money, or cost money.  Developing and following higher principles to guide public decisions are foreign to most businessmen and women with their imbedded profit driven thinking.  To most of them, leadership in government has been downgraded to using the influence of money and power.  And since most of this money comes from large multinational corporations, it is their views they represent.

Can we trust our public lands in the hands of this man?
I would say a definite - NO!

Remember these paragraphs which epitomizes historically the philosophy and legislation from the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC)
– ALEC an organization in which Mr. Gibbs is very active.
"Obviously, Mr. Mendoza is diligently guarding his turf, or he would see that privatization is the most efficient method of delivering governments services, both for the taxpayers and those who use government services," said ALEC Executive Director Samuel A. Brunelli. "There is plenty of evidence that private firms contracted to perform government work do a better job. After all, the firms are in business to generate a profit, not to perpetuate their own existence."

Public service is not about profit and it IS about perpetuating the existence of the Three Rivers Park District.

And This
If done prudently, privatization has the potential to increase efficiency, effectiveness, and reduce the tax burden.

Remember these paragraphs when you go to the polls in November – direct from ALEC documents.

This is not the type of person we want on the Three Rivers Park District Commission.

VOTE NO to John Gibbs for Three Rivers District Park Commissioner.

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