Andy Cohen's Feigned Ethics Menlo Park, posted by Barf Bag Warning, a resident of the Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park neighborhood, on Mar 9, 2007 at 9:15 pm
Strange that Council Member Cohen is spearheading an open government platform. Has anyone ever seen members of Mr. Cohen’s “Kitchen Cabinet” bringing him written documents at the council recesses? Cohen seems to be lost without his crib notes.
Who are the people in Mr. Cohen’s cabinet? How often do they meet? Are the written instructions given to Mr. Cohen made available to the rest of the council and the public? Bet not. I don’t think Cohen blinks without permission from his group of advisors, a group that is motivated by fear and negative thinking.
Beware of tortuous process nonsense. We saw enough of that with Nick Jellins.
Insofar as the length of the council meetings: Mr. Cohen often appears as though he’s already asleep during the meeting. No reason to adjourn the meeting so he can go home and get some shut-eye. He’s already checked out.
Posted by Patti Fry, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Mar 10, 2007 at 9:31 am
Dear BarfBagWarning, This kind of personal attack is out of line. As I have found in talking with him myself, Andy Cohen is a caring, sincere, and principled person who makes the effort to listen to anyone who wishes to share their concerns and ideas with him. Then he makes up his own mind.
Posted by Morris Brown, a resident of the Menlo Park: Park Forest neighborhood, on Mar 10, 2007 at 10:12 am
Barf Bag Warning who ever you are. Your viscous personal attack on Judge Cohen is completely out of line. You claim to be a resident of the Allied Arts neighborhood; here is a councilman who supported the neighbors in the dispute with the Allied Arts Guild.
As for use of notes, this indicates to me he has come prepared on issues before the council. I know Judge Cohen and you obviously do not. He will take the time to listen to your views, but if anyone thinks he is not independently making his own decisions on the issues, really has never talked with him.
Finally, I respect and appreciate every one of the present council.
Posted by CohenFan, a member of the Oak Knoll School community, on Mar 10, 2007 at 10:53 am
I find Cohen quite refreshing. He doesn't owe anyone anything (not developers or unions even though he talks with both). He seems to be serving our community out of a sense of duty to doing Good rather than to the Almighty Buck or to satisfy his Ego.
From what I can tell, he is the only Councilmember who has made consistently clear his priorities since he took office - open and inclusive government, balanced budget, planning our community's future. If you listen closely, he explains his votes early in the council discussions. I do wish he would repeat his rationale when votes are taken because his colleagues and the reporters seem to miss it. On the other hand, that wouldn't be needed if the council's discussions wandered less and the meetings were shorter.
Posted by Pseudonyms Are Fun, a resident of the Menlo Park: Belle Haven neighborhood, on Mar 10, 2007 at 12:15 pm
This is the kind of stuff that just wastes time. Attacking one person or praising one person, giving credit to one person, blaming another and so on. Can we stay on the issues please? All councilmembers bravely put their time in week to week and they all deserve at least some respect.
First, there is no evidence that any councilmember is owned. Nor is there is evidence that any councilmember is not influenced by special interests. Call it what it is.
Back to the open government issue. This is a great start. The letter didn't go far enough in my opinion. But I am glad it is happening.
If I recall, the real cry for open government came from the new candidates. In two years, I never saw a letter or opinion from the two senior councilmembers to this effect. Regardless, with the request for open government reform, this council has set a pretty high bar for itself. Let's see if it has the stones to see it through and push for change.
Posted by AndyAdmirer, a resident of the Menlo Park: Belle Haven neighborhood, on Mar 10, 2007 at 5:50 pm
As far as I know, Andy talks to everyone who wants to spend time with him and personally investigates issues that constituents raise. I find it very refreshing that he doesn't waffle or try to speak out of both sides of his mouth as most of the other council members do.
BBW may feel more comfortable with council members who listen primarily to out-of-towners or to people with a vested financial interest in council decisions. I am glad that Andy and Rich have taken down the "for sale to highest bidder" signs.