Dear editor,

The column (“Can a change agent navigate Frankfort's political minefields?” Feb. 8-9) appears to be an over-dramatization. It isn’t really that difficult for those who are qualified. We need to elect technical-minded problem-solvers, who are capable of dispassionate critical analysis and modular thinking.

These folks see everything as a linked system, and understand how to design under the constraints and tradeoffs of government. Change will naturally follow in an orderly, logical manner. It is what engineers do all the time.

Actually, Publisher Steve Stewart’s “two camps” scenario sounds like former Commissioner Robert Roach, as he imagined himself a fighter in a national culture war. Remember, he sent an email to local churches and Republicans, exposing his real motives to oust then-Frankfort Plant Board Directors Anna Marie Rosen and Walt Baldwin, both of whom are engineers.

The modular thinking solution has always been the conservative position in these disputes, calling for a binding contract that protects the FPB’s ratepayers’ interests, like actual savings, local control and sustainability, which included renewable energy in its portfolio.

It is a natural fit “with those in the business community and middle-class ratepayers” who want reliable, affordable electricity. That is not environmental activism, but logical progression.

We can’t depolarize our politics, just make it work better amidst the polarization. The best way to do this is by democratization. We have always had disagreement, but what locks us up, even when we have a majority, is that the elected decision-makers are too overly emotional, and therefore, incapable of dispassionate critical analysis and modular thinking.

In essence, we have been electing lay people who are the wrong kind of thinkers, grinding everything to a halt. There is hope yet, as we have two engineers running for city commission this year.

Jim Daniel


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