Denver Direct: November 2010

Monday, November 29, 2010

Naysayer Editorial – by Phil Goodstein

The Triumph of the Republicans

Historian Phil Goodstein

     Seventeenth Street Republicans swept the Colorado elections. This is the branch of the GOP also known as the Democrats. Led by the likes of Roy Romer, John Hickenlooper, and Michael Bennet, it has made it plain that advancing the corporate agenda is the primary duty of elected officials. Precisely because the Democrats have assured that its officeholders will carry out the business line, the Republicans have been able to run and elect ever more extreme candidates.
     In some ways, the polling results were quite positive. Regardless of who won the contests for governor and the Senate, obnoxiously bad candidates lost. What is more, getting Hickenlooper out of city hall is an accomplishment. Since gaining the mayor’s post in 2003, he has primarily relied on public relations to cloak his agenda of turning over public business to private interests. His efforts to destroy the integrity of the parks as free gathering spots is simply the tip of his effort to assure that Federico Pena’s beloved “public/private partnership” is the complete control of public life by private entities. Even so, Hickenlooper leaves as mayor before he has been able to make this goal a complete reality. In particular, US OpenAir, an out-of-state contractor whom he allowed to fence off the Civic Center to show movies at $15 a pop, not only failed to do so in 2010, but it recently walked away from its efforts to transform City Park into a private venue for 2011.