For those of you who don’t read the Central Virginian, the politest thing I can say is that you’re not missing much. And with their most recent issue containing several distinct distractive narratives they are finally worthy of discussion.
Like their follow up to last weeks story about the Board of Supervisors firing Eric Purcell, accompanied by multiple letters to editor condemning the Board’s actions. And while few should have any problems with those opinions, it doesn’t change the reality that Board won’t reverse its decision.
Nor was this an isolated incident, this self induced fiasco was one of the Board's chair, Troy Wade’s and the board’s many recent missteps. Something the CV seems reluctant to notice, whether it’s because they’ve chosen not to print any letters, or won’t comment about it, isn’t entirely clear.
But when it comes to misleading narratives, Jim Ogg’s letter supporting last week’s half page ad takes the cake. Not only has he drunk the kool-aide, he insists on spraying everyone else with it. And if that name sounds familiar; you might remember him as the guy providing a running barrage of approval for whatever claptrap fell out of Brat, Reeve’s, Garrett’s and Farrells’ mouths at our three Clown Halls.
Where anyone walking into one of those meetings might have thought they’d accidentally wandered into a tent revival meeting.
As a former telecom executive, he knows full well that there is no incentive for the major ISP’s to let the electrical cooperatives compete with them in any way shape or form, let alone allow them to connect to their fiber backbones.
Perhaps the CV's readers should know about a deal he made with one of them in exchange for “allowing” them to put up a tower on his farm, persuading them into installing a loop of fiber from their tower to his house, where presumably his grandiose notions of “If you ain’t in Dutch, you ain’t much” can now be exercised at the highest speed possible.
Having held lengthy conversations with him over the years while handing out literature at the Patrick Henry 2 precinct, I was struck by his ability to spew talking points, along with his inability to explain them or why they were important.
And it is a common trait among authoritarians, much like his unwavering commitment to humble bragging about being an extractive rentier whenever possible. And when pressed for clarification about basic Republican principles, he would invariably end conversations with “I’m not going to convince you of anything.” True, but that’s never was the issue.
He’s not saying “let’s agree to disagree,” he’s deliberately derailing any future conversation, and it’s a pattern of willful deflection found throughout the entire Republican Party. His words are a distraction intended to keep people focused their frustration over internet access. Where the only thing they hear, is the County is wasting money and fiber is the way to go.
Thinking that if voters are angry enough, they will latch onto the illusion of fiber, and won’t realize that this is another broken promise … I mean deliverance from their frustrations which never comes. And like all good lies, it works because it contains a grain of truth.
Of course fiber is faster and more reliable than any other type of internet connection. But as Bernie Hill’s of the Broadband Commission points out it would cost $100 million or more to run fiber to every house in Louisa County. Nor did Mr. Ogg or Adams seem to have the slightest idea where that kind of money would come from, other than an abiding faith in the magical properties of the free market.
Not that it will ever happen, any more than the Board is likely to fast track the County’s current broadband project without considerable push back from the voters. And given how grudgingly they approved funding for its initial phase, it remains to be seen how successful they will be in balancing that same voter discontent over a lack of access to broadband against future requests for the remaining $ 4 to 4.5 million need to bring wireless and presumably high speed internet to Louisa County over the course of the next few years.
Perhaps they're convinced that the County's two most trusted sycophants ... I mean Board members will be re-elected, and that by putting all their eggs into one basket in an effort to unseat Stephanie Koren in the Mineral district they will have enough toadies on the board to make this “problem” go away.
What got left out of the CV’s narrative about Broadband, and the Boards behaviors, were the questions of; who’s behind this sudden push and who really benefits? Had they bothered to conduct any basic research, no doubt they would have found organizations such as Americans for Prosperity hiding under most of the rocks they turned over.
So why would anyone listen to these guys shill for one of the Koch brothers spin-offs?
Because AFP and a host of other dark money groups are determined to seize control of the Commonwealth at every level imaginable; backing candidates like Duane Adams in Louisa, John McGuire in the States 56th district, along with Gillespie’s unholy trinity of extremists. Knowing full well they will respond to their dog whistles, because they have grown accustomed to decades worth of resentment.
And their base will respond with incoherent rage, boiling over with frustration that their life isn’t going well, and they have no internet. And since resentment is the only “solution” Republicans have to offer, don’t let them use it to fool you into believing that local government being involved in bringing high speed internet into the county is somehow a fool’s game.
When in fact, had the County not taken up this issue, and gotten the ball rolling, we wouldn’t be hearing a peep about this from Mr. Adams or his AFP surrogates, because it would have no longer been a divisive enough issue.
Meanwhile, they are depending on people to forget that divide and conquer is the only thing Republican’s have ever offered, and they will continue to support their candidates no matter what they stand for.