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Saturday, 09 April 2011


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The Noll Family

What does it matter how long we stay, if none of our questions are answered?

The Pinnacle of Biomass

Scott Orenstein is concerned about community welfare? Then why isn't he anti-biomass? All he does is show up and act like an agent provacateur. Dude, we know you're reporting back to the Grand Poobah of all things Biomass. Tell him he's lame to send you to poison the well.

I love it when Valdosta contractors are sitting there in the audience at City Hall and Mrs. Noll says "Would everyone who is opposed to biomass please stand up?" and they all hunker down further into their seats and glare all around the room at the mothers and grandmothers and little children with asthma. Yeah, those little kids are keeping the working man from making an honest living building things.

Many adults have children at home to take care of, and unlike SOME LOCAL BUSINESSMEN, they don't get paid to sit there and schmooze the politicians for some future construction contract.

The Anti-Biomass folks have been up front and center at numerous places, events, and public meetings where Orenstein was not in attendance. They bring their kids when they can, but children cannot stay out on school nights. What a condescending comment and it is not a good point, Mr. Quarterman, maybe retired citizens can sit there all night, but parents, children and college students cannot. If Mayor Fretti is going to have 2 Citizens to be Heard portions then put it on the agenda and we'll send groups in two separate shifts to make sure we can rebut those who don't want to speak when the crowd is large and agin' 'em.

It's almost like Orenstain has a not-so-hidden agenda. rolly eyes


I wonder which construction firms in town want to build the biomass plant and the private prison? No wonder they hunker down and glare.

They're broadcasting "We have concern for the community."

Jon Parris

"The Pinnacle of Biomass" comment is absolutely spot-on (and funny)...my sentiments exactly.

A responsible media would ordinarily keep a vigilant watch at government meetings, and an informed public would decide individually or collectively when the need would arise to attend in person to address a concern.

The above is why I am grateful for your work and this website, JSQ!

The Pinnacle of Biomass


The biomass dude in this article said he was all about concern for his community but he was actually being paid by the corporation to undermine anti-biomass efforts in Lufkin.

Lowndes Area Knowledge Exchange

Why does it matter? Once again:
"The road of respect goes both ways."
Politics is not a debating society; it's also about credibility.
Vilifying someone who made a mild criticism is not a very good way to build credibility, especially when that criticism could easily be addressed by simple actions.

mark george

1) For many of us it appears that this body often does what it sees fit regardless of its members' constituency.

2) Many of us do stay for complete meetings, especially because much of the disrespect council members have shown the public occurs during their commentary section. However, some nights we can't.

3) We also might leave because we trust other areas the City manages and don't feel the need to police their every move/decision?

4) For many "citizens to be heard" is a highly symbolic gesture/ritual, largely meant to appease the public and give the veneer of political accountability. It is not a state or federally mandated part of any public meeting. Nor are public official required to speak or answer any questions? As one city council person has stated, "they don't even have to have it," I guess that means the public should be thankful?

5) Lastly, should the public really have to monitor significant decisions that affect the health and future of the community? Aren't elected officials supposed to have those concerns at heart? Aren't they supposed to re-present the collective will of their constituents?

Peace and Love,
Mark Patrick George

Lowndes Area Knowledge Exchange

Thank you, Dr. George, for making a reasoned response.
1) And if you want to change that, you need political capital, which isn't obtained by vilification of people who make mild criticisms.
2) There were enough people for some to be delegated to stay outside while the meeting was going on, yet not one could stay for the entire meeting?
3) More attention would perhaps result in a different opinion.
4) Those who want to convince the public of something would do well not to leave themselves open to such an obvious criticism as the one under discussion.
5) If you want elected officials who will do that, you need to convince the public to elect them. See (1).
6) Even if such people get elected, they will still need help from the public on a wide variety of topics.
7) Maybe some of them have been elected already; in which case see (1).
Thanks again for posting a reasoned response, and also for having the courage to identify yourself.

The Pinnacle of Biomass

The only vilification I see is Mr. Orenstein publicly vilifying the WACE folks and getting a free platform and encouragement from Mr. Quarterman. He didn't make a "mild criticism", he once again, as he has done several times before, used a public event to poison the well against WACE.

He's a business partner with Ashley Paulk, and his other business partner, Walter Gill, contributes to the political campaign of Crawford Powell.

Pinnacle Prime is where he works. Do they want to build a biomass plant or a private prison? You might want to explore some Open Records Requests and educate yourself on the back stories.

Lowndes Area Knowledge Exchange

Let's see, public officials and government employees often complain about LAKE, anonymous rumormongers complain about LAKE: LAKE must be doing something right!
Indeed, we give a public platform to everybody from Leigh Touchton to Ashley Paulk, from George Rhynes to Crawford Powell, from Mark George to Brad Lofton. Basically, anybody who speaks in a public meeting may show up here.
At least people who speak in such meetings have the courage to say who they are.

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