The involvement of Richmond Mayor Gayle McLaughlin in the politics of the Chevron Ecuador issue, and the unwillingness of Bay Area media to blast her for her actions, shows just how consistent disinvestment in education has created a society of people who allow stupid actions to go without challenge.
The job of any Mayor of any city is to bring money and jobs to it, so that quality of life can be bettered. The technics of the Chevron Ecuador issue aside for a moment, what the hell does taking a trip to Ecuador on the dime of Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa have to do with bringing new jobs to Richmond?
The last time I checked, Richmond’s unemployment rate was at 12 percent, and for black men, it was at a whopping 36 percent. That means over 1 of 3 African American men are unemployed.
Where are the jobs for black men? Where are the manufacturing positions that don’t call for a masters degree or a collage education? They’re not in Ecuador at all.
What Gayle McLaughlin has been allowed to do in attacking its main employer, Chevron, is get away with economic development mal-practice murder. She has been helped by a constituency that gains money only to advance its so-called non-profit organizations. They create jobs for themselves protesting employers, but don’t make any new jobs for the people who need them the most.
This is why I’m starting to sour on the whole “progressive” movement – it’s done nothing, and zero, and zilch to create jobs, and has stood by mumbling 1960s slogans while jobs marched overseas to places like China.
Now, Richmond’s stuck with service jobs it thinks it can squeeze more salary money out of – more proof that the people who advance these policies never once tried to run a service business.
In the protest business, one doesn’t need a large staff, and can get by paying a homeless person under the table to show up and be a body at some rally (and I’m not kidding). This is the economy that’s developed in Richmond, and it’s only served its masters and not the people who need the help the most.
Where’s Richmond’s startup community? Where’s the effort to get more new companies into Richmond? Where’s the effort to bring a steel industry to Richmond? Why not try? What about replacing the lost tool of Redevelopment?
Richmond is in a shape so terrible, that even its own Chamber of Commerce quotes an economic development agenda that was made in 2010 – it’s 2014, folks.
It’s hard to figure out what’s worse: that the Mayor wasted time in Ecuador, buying the latest lies from Correa in his fraudulent attempt to extort an American Oil Company that just happens to be a major employer in Richmond, or that no one has done anything at all to bring meaningful change to the lives of black men in Richmond.
All of the parties involved in this self-serving effort should be ashamed of themselves. For all of its problems with respect to the refinery, at least Chevron’s employing people, trying to fix that issue, and pumping money into Richmond
What did Gayle do? Take some of that money she makes, and spent it in Ecuador, blasting a friend to the city and regarding an issue that has nothing to do with her, and she knows nothing about.
That was dumb.