The Mayor's got his troops out defending the scam-era system... right now on 770 KKOB AM. According to host Jim Villanucci, John Walsh contacted him at 2:15 pm this afternoon offering to send over a few guests to talk about the system. Could this be in reaction to the Rising Tide? We think so.
This is no doubt damage control and the troops from the city are doing their level best to spin this. So far, when pressed on issues like rear-end collisions these "heavy hitters" from downtown are doing a less than credible job of making their case. Take a listen at http://www.770kob.com/KKOB_OnlineRadioStream.html. If nothing else it's entertaining listening.
----- Update 4:00 pm -----
Who knew this would turn into a live blog? It's hard to tell who's saying what, but one thing is clear... these guys are tasked with supporting this policy and defending it is difficult for them. Remember, they all work for Marty and their job is to salute and carry out his honor's orders. One example in particular is Captain Hetes. APD SOP requires him to support any ordinance regardless of his personal feelings on the matter when he represents the department. He is literally prohibited from speaking out against established policy.
----- Update 4:30 pm -----
This is what happens when the discussion doesn't include anyone who has the authority to make policy. The city crew can't admit that there could be a problem. Meanwhile, the public picks up on their defensiveness and the perception is that they are being spun. It stops mattering whether the "heavy-hitters" from the city are telling the truth or not... trust is already lost.
----- Update 5:00 pm -----
We're surprised that these guys made it through two whole hours without a call from the 11th floor. Antagonistic, defensive, unresponsive... all describe the city's performance. No surprise that they're not staying for a third. They've done very little to reassure the public that the scam-eras are function properly, that they save lives, or that they're NOT ABOUT THE MONEY.
----- Update 5:20 pm -----
Need we say more. Jim Villanucci was offended by the "heavy-hitters" from the city Kevin Broderick, John Castillo, Joe Bowdich, Ron Hetes, and John Walsh. He's gone so far as to call them liars. What's more important, callers weren't fooled by their performance either. Note to the 11th floor... leave spinning to the professionals and thanks for sending them out!
----- Update 6:00 pm -----
An interesting factoid has come out of today's Villanucci show... the time for a yellow light across the city seems to be close to or right about 3 seconds. Host Jim Villanucci timed the lights today himself, finding the lights up and down Montgomery were set to 3 seconds for a yellow light on through traffic. Anecdotal evidence from callers seems to support Mr. Villanucci's timing.
Now people are becoming suspicious that the city will alter the timing long enough to prove that they're 4 seconds (as maintained by traffic engineer Kevin Broderick) to the media and then switch them back. Who knows what they'll try... after all today's attempt to spin sure hasn't worked for them.