3. Ash and Fetherston.
In my analysis of September 22, at http://charlesriverwhitegeeseblog.blogspot.com/2016/09/charles-river-city-of-cambridge.html, I attempted to evaluate the candidates for Cambridge City Manager from an environmental point of view.
My first and foremost evaluation is that the terrible 42 year reign of the Cambridge City Manager Machine must end. That is DePasquale. He is brilliantly qualified from a financial point of view. The financial point of view using a skillfully influenced Machine has done severe damage to the environment of the City of Cambridge and the Charles River over the 42 years of its existence..
The Cambridge City Manager machine must end.
Both Ash and Fetherston are significantly better than anybody who has been part of this terrible entity.
3. Ash and Fetherston.
The reality is that the environmental destruction lobby in Cambridge is well organized, highly dishonest and very persuasive. Key in the lobby is too many “groups” which too often achieve the opposite of what they claim to stand for. They rope well meaning people into fighting against their own goals.
Either candidate could have trouble with them. It is the nature of stepping into a very terrible situation.
Ash has a step up on Fetherston in that a new City Manager would be expected to put in his own team in the key spots. Fetherston has clearly rejected the option of replacing existing management. He has said he would keep the status quo. That is a real negative for Fetherston because the Development Department is the core of the environmental problem. Then again, Fetherston has been in more city management organizations that Ash, but no other organization can be imagined as destructive / well organized as the organization one will step into.
As far as Ash goes, Ash is probably an ideal candidate for a strong City Manager for Cambridge. Period.
The big problem with Ash is that, after 42 years of the Strong, and deceptive and destructive, Cambridge City Manager Machine, Cambridge really does not need another strong City Manager.
Fetherston fits in with the Cambridge City Council in the mold of an excellent city administrator who would consider himself exactly that, the top administrator with the City Council setting policy. His presentation was perfect in that mold. He did a great job of presenting both sides of issues and saying he would go with City Council Direction.
Very much not to knock Ash. Ash is top notch as a strong City Manager candidate. The difference is the word “strong.”
Then again, the organizational situation cannot be ignored. Fetherston keeping the Development Department in place is a negative. The Development Department and their cheerleaders have been deceptive. The Development Department and their cheerleaders have been destructive. The Development Department and their cheerleaders are very skilled at giving false impressions.
So you go back to Ash. But, I should hope that Fetherston has sufficient skill to stand up to the Cambridge outrage, I would hope.
My analysis of the 42 year Cambridge City Manager Machine gets worse when I add Civil Rights issues to the table.
The REAL environmental record and the REAL civil rights record of the 42 year Cambridge City Manager Machine are both far beneath normalcy in people who believe in progressive principles. Add to that the very real influence the City Government has over supposedly independent “protective groups” in Cambridge. That influence includes influence over at least one entity which has been instrumental in the Charles River destruction.
The vileness of the influenced groups stands out with this victoriously destructive entity’s claim to be representing the neighborhood and bragging of their supposed duty to censor comments negative to the City Government and its friends on its Listserv, plus their continuing fight to make things worse on the Charles River. If you are defending the Charles River, you are not neutral on its destruction.
Fresh blood from either person could clean things up, or the fresh blood could be fooled. And the possibility of being fooled REALLY is the rub.
Both persons have a lot of experience, whether that experience includes the outrages which are normal in Cambridge, MA, USA, is, of necessity, unknown, and unlikely.
Going further at this time would have no value to this analysis.
Either Ash or Fetherston would be one Heck of an improvement over the 42 year Cambridge City Manager machine. Normal humans do not stoop as low as the situation in the City of Cambridge.
So I say “maybe” to both Ash and Fetherston, and “no” to DePasquale.
At the same time, I realize that this analysis has been evolving in my attempts to communicate. I apologize to my readers and to Messrs. Ash and Fetherston for any confusion I have communicated in my attempts to be prompt and to be properly communicative.