Make a Difference Monday

Nathan Alger is the new Grand Traverse County Administrator. I did not die of shock. This is at least the second local government official who lacks the experience to be in their position – Paul Soma doesn’t have the requisite background to be running TCAPS, either. I sincerely hope Alger surprises me, but we’re already off to an ominous start with the Deb Zerafa thing. I don’t see why they won’t tell us what’s going on with that, especially since you can find article after article about what a great job Zerafa does. Until someone gives me more information that I believe, I’m filing the Zerafa thing under some people flexing their muscles to show a tenacious, effective employee who’s in charge.

In other news, a study came out from Paul Gao of Notre Dame which says that local governments who have a corresponding local paper that serves as a watchdog run more efficiently. According to the study, when the local government losses their watchdog, they make riskier decisions. We have local media, but too often, our local media just regurgitates the government storyline or runs with the press release without thinking it through. I don’t need a local news outlet whose recurring storyline is that there’s nothing to see here, especially when there are things to see. I hope this little project makes a difference.

The spam I get on this site, though. I have to delete spam comments at least once a day now. They’re essentially comments that are advertising a product or trying to build links to another website. I’ll generally approve any comment that says anything, as long as there aren’t ridiculously personal or threats or anything like that. But no on people try to sell things. The things they’re trying to sell are pretty interesting.

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