Timothy Gray -- An Independent Messenger

The winner of an election is not any group of candidates. The winner is the ideas expressed by a few sincere individuals who speak their truth to the best of their ability. The name attached to the winning ideas matters less than the ideas themselves.

Greater citizen participation will make for greater citizen satisfaction and trust. With trust will come and financial balance will be restored and we will be able to rebuild the City's aging infrastructure. There is work to do to restore that trust. Can we as a City really look at ourselves without being defensive and compare our practices with our neighbors? The numbers may show that we have to go on a financial diet. The challenge will be to openly look at the business of being a City and avoid any attachment to historical ways. No denial. This is a new day.

Clearly, being Green needs to be in the fabric all actions we take.

Another winner will be community participation. (Real community participation, not just technical compliance with the Open Meeting laws.) Just watch the awareness of City issues grow as more people are invited in to the decision-making process.

Long-term financial planning and fiscal responsibility also will win. We must find room in our operating budget for infrastructure so that our $450 million backlog of "deferred maintenance" doesn't continue to grow. We must focus our priorities, make some hard decisions, and make sure that we are advocating for the future where there is always enough set aside to keep our streets in good repair, and our utility right-of-ways up to the most modern (i.e. underground) standards.

The other winner will be "Representative Government." We must have a diverse Council that welcomes a diversity of experiences and backgrounds. We need more than just a group of people who rise from the ranks of City Commissions. There will be room for the PTA mother/father who hasn't had time to hover around City politics, because she/he has been busy with family and school activities.

The real life experiences of Palo Alto citizens will be a natural path to greater civic engagement.

The children who have watched their daddy, or their friend's daddy participate in an election are also benefited by a model of participation that they see. The future generations will benefit by the extra fire and excitement that has been observed by the children who see that participation is an "ordinary" thing to do in a life, and step up to the plate without trepidation.

Thank you so much for your cooperation!

Tim Gray

Comments

Proud of You!

From JFK's 1961 Inauguration Speech - Truth then - Truth now! Tim, Thank you for running and representing the best of these ideals:

"Vice President Johnson, Mr. Speaker, Mr. Chief Justice, President Eisenhower, Vice President Nixon, President Truman, reverend clergy, fellow citizens, we observe today not a victory of party, but a celebration of freedom—symbolizing an end, as well as a beginning—signifying renewal, as well as change. For I have sworn before you and Almighty God the same solemn oath our forebears prescribed nearly a century and three quarters ago.

The world is very different now. For man holds in his mortal hands the power to abolish all forms of human poverty and all forms of human life. And yet the same revolutionary beliefs for which our forebears fought are still at issue around the globe—the belief that the rights of man come not from the generosity of the state, but from the hand of God.

Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, in order to assure the survival and the success of liberty.
This much we pledge—and more.

...Let the word go forth from this time and place, to friend and foe alike, that the torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans—born in this century, tempered by war, disciplined by a hard and bitter peace, proud of our ancient heritage—and unwilling to witness or permit the slow undoing of those human rights to which this Nation has always been committed, and to which we are committed today at home and around the world.

...And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you—ask what you can do for your country. ..
Finally, With a good conscience our only sure reward, with history the final judge of our deeds, let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth God's work must truly be our own. "