Comments by jfm

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Written on As Chamber's Proposal Dies, Compromise Seems Near on Hillside Plan:

We have written about this plan many times over the past year, and have many times linked to the MPC website where people can read it. We try to inform people of lots of things, all the time. We cannot go and stand on people's doorsteps and force them to read our paper or any paper. We do not "obscure and omit crucial information." And now that you are lapsing back into your customary conspiracy doubletalk, I am done responding to you.

Written on As Chamber's Proposal Dies, Compromise Seems Near on Hillside Plan:

"The biggest announcement in that County Commission/MPC meeting, that you left out, was that only 7% of the affected land is in the City of Knoxville. Why would you omit that? Probably because it is a game changer."

As much as it goes against my better judgment to even respond to the worst troll in town, I'll just note that the amount of affected land in the city and county has been obvious to anyone who can read a map since the plan was first put forth. Of course most of the affected property is outside city limits -- that's where most of the open land in Knox County is.

Written on The Kings: 'The Kings are Here' (1980):

Wow, cool. I was just going to post that I love "Beat/Glide" too -- and actually wrote an unrelated blog post about it a few months ago as part of our "I Love That Song" series: http://blogs.metropulse.com/10-minute....

Thanks for dropping by the website, John. If you guys ever decide to come play Knoxville, let us know.

Written on In the Running: Meet the Candidates for City Council Seat B:

Also, anyone who thinks the Stairs are somehow involved in trying to restart the Ten-Year Plan knows absolutely nothing about the local politics of the last year or so. Your conspiracy theories are even dafter than usual, 9. I didn't have room to get into the whole homelessness issue in this story, but Stair and Owen are sort of on the same page there -- Owen supports a campus approach, Stair says he's open to that but wanted to hear from Compassion Knoxville and consider the options. Both of them were skeptical of any kind of large scattered-site housing.

Written on In the Running: Meet the Candidates for City Council Seat B:

We reported Marshall Stair's 2010 income multiple times in recent weeks. If you've forgotten, it was $82,111. And we reported that Buck Cochran said he earned too little to have to file an income tax return. This was all covered in this story: http://www.metropulse.com/news/2011/j....

Written on 'Atlas Shrugged' Bores the Audience Into Submission:

There are two different issues here, worth separating: The awfulness of Rand's ideas, and the awfulness of the movie. It would have been possible for a talented and interesting filmmaker to make a much better movie presenting Rand's characters and ideology. That movie would still run up against the central misconceptions of human nature and fundamental misanthropy of Rand's work -- it would be hard to make a sympathetic, engaging film of such basically unsympathetic material. But it would certainly be possible to make a much better movie than this. Adam Sandler has made much better movies than this. This movie starts with the bad ideas at the heart of Rand's whole enterprise, and then constructs a flimsy, dull, nearly incoherent facade around them. It doesn't even provide a very good foundation for discussing or debating Rand's work, because it is so poorly made. And the fact that some Rand fans are trying to pretend otherwise -- trying to argue that the film has some redeeming qualities as a film -- just makes them seem ever more cult-like, to anyone not already initiated into the Objectivist faith.

Written on 'Atlas Shrugged' Bores the Audience Into Submission:

"Rand would never in a million years claim that corporations who lobbied for bailouts were the Galt type! It's exactly opposite her thinking!"

And illustrates exactly why her "thinking" was so wrong-headed in so many ways. Her heroes here are people who run train lines and oil companies, among other things -- industries that, in the United States and everywhere else, have always, always been highly dependent on and intertwined with "the government's levers of power." That she supposes there's such a thing as a tycoon who is not so intertwined -- that there is such a thing as a "self-made man," much less that they are legion in the "productive industries" -- shows how little she knew or experienced of either business or government. Like most utopians, her view of the world is almost entirely detached from reality. But hers is a much meaner and angrier utopia than most. For what it's worth, I've read "The Objectivist Ethics" (you can read it here: http://www.aynrand.org/site/PageServe...). It's a whole lot of gobbledygook in which Rand takes it on herself to divide the human race into "human beings" and "parasites, moochers, looters, brutes and thugs." Leaving aside her dubious credentials to serve as judge and jury here, the use of language alone is borderline sociopathic. It's hard to read her and not get a sense that she really detested a whole lot of people. It sounds just this side of the rantings of your average paranoid schizophrenic. And has about as much to do with the real world.

But of course, thanks for reading.

Written on Knoxville's Task Force Influx:

9, it's hard for me to keep track of how many people's back pockets we're in. I'm glad you're here to help.

Written on Who's in Charge of the Ten-Year Plan?:

The mayors asked them to form this task force, that's it. That's not a mandate. There was no legal action, and the task force or advisory board or whatever it is has no vested power to do anything. They can meet or not meet, recommend or not recommend, do anything they want. And neither Council nor Commission is obliged to so much as answer a phone call from them. If actual recommendations come out of this, there's a good chance Council and Commission will in fact at least give them a hearing, just because nobody else is doing anything on the issue. But there's no obligation on anybody's part to do anything.

And Bill Lyons is in fact quoted in the story above.

Written on Who's in Charge of the Ten-Year Plan?:

"Nobody" is not an opinion, it is literally true. There is a TYP office with no one in charge of it, and neither the city nor county are planning to do anything new with the TYP. In the meantime, a task force with no actual mandate from anyone will be meeting, with the aim of making recommendations that may or may not be heeded by either of our local governments. None of this is opinion. In fact, I don't even have an opinion about it, other than that I think it is interesting. You're welcome to view it all optimistically. Pessimists might be more inclined to see it as a political punt that protects anyone with any real decision-making authority from having to make any real decisions. You can make a case for either of those positions.

I report, Nine. You decide.

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