A course in baloney

An opponent of the city’s proposals for the municipal golf courses posts a video on YouTube full of the false memes clouding the debate.

1. “I know there is someone—some group—that can turn a profit,” says Jeff Parker.

My understanding is the courses lose money because golf is dying and the market is over-saturated. If that’s not the case, the narrator should show examples of managment elsewhere that turned courses around. Evidence, not wishful thinking.

2. “It just seems to me that these courses were run down on purpose. We were set up. There was some sort of hidden agenda. And someone needs to be held accountable …”

Actually, the courses were run down on purpose. All municipal infrastructure, including City Hall, and all amenities, were run down on purpose, and all services degraded, because city ran itself into such debt, over-compensating public employees and launching expensive capital projects, that there was no money to maintain anything.

But that’s not proof of a ‘hidden agenda.”

3. “Stockton cannot be someplace special without public golf.” Ri-i-i-ght.

4. As for the affordable housing dog whistle, I’ll re-read the golf study tonight. My recollection is that the proposal calls for mixed use development — mostly market-rate housing with retail.

That doesn’t mean the gentleman has no valid points. This city initiative, for instance, omitted the sort of public town halls that made the General Plan such a good exercise in grass roots scoping. But that’s political ineptitude, not fiscal imprudence. And a city official’s claim it would cost as much to close the courses and operate them as green space merits skepticism.

In any case, let’s argue on the facts.


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    Michael Fitzgerald

    Mike Fitzgerald is The Record’s award-winning metro columnist. His column runs in the paper three times a week. Born in San Francisco, he was raised in Stockton. His column covers diverse beats including, sometimes, the offbeat. Read Full
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