Reports of my decision are greatly exaggerated

COLUMBIA, Mo 10/10/14 (Beat Byte) -- "Reports of my death are greatly exaggerated," Mark Twain reportedly observed after the New York Herald published news of his impending demise 14 years prematurely. 

After the Columbia Daily Tribune reported Wednesday that Sixth Ward Councilwoman Barbara Hoppe would not seek re-election in 2015, she contacted this publication with a similar Twainian dilemma. 

"Contrary to Mr. Denney's newspaper article in the Tribune, I have not made any decision whether or not to run for Council," Mrs. Hoppe explained, referencing Tribune reporter Andrew Denney.   "When I contacted him after reading his article yesterday, he said he reported that I was not running based on something I said to him in passing three years ago at my re-election party."

Since the Trib article -- about a Town Boss political war chest -- Facebook and other social media have buzzed with concern about Hoppe's reported departure from the Council.  And no wonder.  Crony capitalist Town Bosses Bob Pugh, Billy and Elvin Sapp have already amassed $70,000 (and sure to grow) to stack the Council with Boss-friendly members (as if they need any more).

Though generally pro-business, Mrs. Hoppe is known for tempering her votes.  The Bosses instead want untempered, unfettered support. 

Two Boss-wannabes -- builder Mike Tompkins and Realtor Paul Land -- have joined the war chest effort, along with the dynamic Jennifer Bukowsky, a Libertarian-leaning defense attorney with a solid political future (if she wants it) who doesn't need the Bosses directing her to their pet causes.  

This marks the second time the crony capitalist contingent has co-opted her wonderful voice.  The first time, they persuaded Mrs. Bukowsky to publicly testify in favor of Blight, mostly for its dubious potential as a "jobs creation measure" that would miraculously "liberate" low income people from the shackles of minimum wage employment.      

It's heartbreaking to see one of Columbia's most viable liberty-philic leaders -- Bukowsky -- throwing in with a group that wants the liberty to do as it wishes, and sells its bad ideas as ways to "get government off the backs of hardworking Americans."   Problem is, government is on our collective backs BECAUSE OF, not despite, crony capitalism. 

As for reporter Denney, Councilwoman Hoppe gave him a scolding this publication has also received -- from Boss Pugh, no less.   It goes with the territory.   "He did not check with me or call me to verify or find out what my current plans are," she said.  "Very reckless and irresponsible journalism at best."

The Tribune has corrected the story. 


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Town full of pushy Bosses?  We bark before they bite!