Editorial: Visioning zombies return to Star Chamber


350-ZOMBIE-RESPONSE-TEAMTwo months and $75,000 later, St Augustine’s visioning zombies are still meeting to form goals and prepare for a town hall meeting to be held August 18th. No word yet on a time for that town hall meeting, but the committee steering the runaway train Monday, August 4th, have decided to convene in the middle of the afternoon — when many people who feel forced to pay for this limp and flabby melodrama are still at work.

At the last meeting of the so called, “Visioning 2014 & Beyond Steering Committee”, members of the committee met to review the results of a community survey. Less than 5% of the registered voters in the City of St Augustine responded. The feedback solicited, which some professional pollsters and analysts have cautioned to be so poorly worded as to be ambiguous, asked respondents what they think the city’s best attributes are and what they think is missing.

Since then, facilitator Herb Marlowe, whose image is being considered for inclusion in a rogue’s gallery at Pat Croce’s Pirate Museum, has reviewed the survey results. He has reportedly edited a list of potential “goals, strategies and objectives” for our future –ostensibly based on those survey results; the details of which were not supplied to local news sources.

According to an announcement from the Department of Community Affairs, the committee will help “narrow down the information” to “focus the goals of the community”.

Apparently the responses from the community don’t speak for themselves, so the zombies feel the need to “focus” them on what THEY think is best for us. Since that appears to be the case, why did they bother to ask us in the first place? Couldn’t we just have done what the mayor wants to do and saved the $75,000? After all, Mayor Boles has done such a bang up job on giving us what “we” want for the 450th — we might as well let him have his way until after the election.

The meeting is at 3:30 p.m. Monday in The Alcazar Room at City Hall.

The goal of visioning is to create a product that will help guide the city’s future in a way that balances the needs of residents, tourists and business owners and others who have an interest in the city’s future. The goal of the Star Chamber, an ancient secret high court in England, was to suppress opposition to the king; extracting evidence by torturing witnesses, sometimes acting on mere rumors. It was mercifully abolished in 1641 by Parliament for abuses of power.