This OPINION was contributed by Hollister Resident Marty Richman.
According to the Christian Science Monitor, “Politics ain’t beanbag” is the archaic way of saying “life is rough; get over it” to a politician who receives bruising treatment from opponents, critics, or the media. The expression dates back to a cartoon character in 1895 and little, if anything, has changed since.
If the people of San Benito County are destined to put up with Supervisor Anthony Botelho’s predictable attack-dog role from the other side of the podium where he can hide from face-to-face rebuttal, at least they deserve a new act; this one is all worn out.
Botelho was so busy trying to protect Supervisor Jerry Muenzer’s seat, a vote he owns lock, stock, and barrel on key transportation issues, that he probably forgot that he used the exact same scenario during that district’s last election. This time he went after Rob Bernosky for Muenzer, last time it was Victor Gomez, both times at official meetings of the Board of Supervisors where he is well protected by the rules from rebuttal and always gets the last word.
He’s smart, the public has a short memory; even I had forgotten he’d pulled the identical stunt during the 2014 elections until I ran across the article I had written at the time for the Hollister Free Lance. Here is the key portion from four years ago, you may recognize this tactic of attacking an empty chair from last week – as Yogi said, “It’s déjà vu all over again.”
“All pretense went out the window when Chairman Muenzer inexplicably sat on his gavel as Botelho recently launched a personal and political attack on Gomez who is the chairman of the Council of Governments (COG). Botelho was upset that the COG director had resigned, but both Botelho and Muenzer are also on the COG board and could have aired their complaints when COG was in session; you know – man up.
Worse, Botelho also targeted a private consultant and local law firm, neither of whom were present nor asked about their versions of events. As is his usual M.O., Botelho used belittling, derogatory terms against a private citizen – terms that the chair would never allow the public to direct toward a board member. This was a clear violation of the ‘respect rules’ that Chairman Muenzer had set for everyone else.”
With the real mess the board has made of things over the last several years and the gigantic costs to the taxpayers, it's a wonder they have the time for the petty side of politics and especially to dig up this stale act. Well, politics ain’t beanbag, but many times the beanbags have more integrity than the politicians, that’s for certain.