When I first became involved in Troy politics, I didn't really know who Troy Citizens United were until I saw a mailer in opposition of the February 2010 millage vote. The mailer was laughable -- filled with so many inaccuracies, rudimentary stick figures and over-the-top fear-tactic laden phrases that I thought, "Wow, this fringe group of zealots is surely some silly little hate group that will vanish!"
Boy, was I wrong. What I found out was that they were fully backed by some of Oakland County's biggest and best funded power-hitters, had been around for a LONG time, and regularly received many and generous donations from people I had know for YEARS.
(Obviously not enough to help spell-check or fact-check mailers, though...but I digress...)
And their tactics WORKED. They target a specific "universe," the political term for intended audience. This universe is known for disliking tax increases for anything, believes the myth that Troy has been over-spending for those luxuries like good roads, adequate drain systems and the best police/fire force around. They hate that Troy had become THE place to work -- that we had hired regularly the most qualified and competent and educated employees and paid them a fair living wage.
So when a voice of opposition arrived, first with TRUST and then their off-shoot, SAVE TROY -- the group mainly responsible for saving the library with the successful millage last August -- the TCU didn't know what to do. Then came the RECALL JANICE DANIELS team, and that sent them over the edge.
Suddenly, they weren't the only voice or even a voice anyone gave credit to anymore.
Suddenly, someone was opposing their spurious claims.
Suddenly, PEOPLE BEGAN TO LEARN THE TRUTH. And the TCU can't handle the truth, as the saying goes...
So the smoke and mirrors came out. TRUST, SAVE TROY, RECALL JANICE DANIELS...they all must be WELL-ORGANIZED AND WELL-FUNDED. We must all have been POLITICAL OPERATIVES. Surely we were all LIBERALS, too. (GASP!).
Lies...all of it lies. You want to know who it is that helped save that library? Who tried to elect a new council with ALL OUR BEST INTERESTS IN MIND? Who stood up to a BIGOTED MAYOR?
We are regular people.
We are moms and dads, grandparents, aunts and uncles...high school students and younger.
We are Troy residents.
We are new to the ins and outs of local issues, most of us.
We've never held political office, and most of us do not care to EVER hold office.
We are Republicans, Democrats, Independents, Moderates, Libertarians, and undeclared.
We are Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Jews, and more.
We are straight and gay.
We are YOUR NEIGHBORS.
We share one vision: to restore Troy to what we all know it was and can be again -- a thriving city welcoming to ALL citizens who want the best place in which to live, work and play.
If you saw how any of the behind-the-scenes work on the library campaign, the November council/mayor campaign, or even the recall campaign took place, you'd LAUGH. We are earnest, to be sure, but we are NOT seasoned political savants by ANY means.
When we DO have outside help from someone who knows how to run a campaign, we argue and fuss and fight to do things OUR way, not the politically strategic way.
We do not want to win with disingenuous games-playing We don't want to act like the REAL proven political operatives with their well-funded (often with outside money and support) campaigns against our vision. We don't want to win AT ANY COST...we want to win because IT'S RIGHT FOR TROY.
Janice Daniels can paint us however she wants, that's her prerogative. But like most everything that comes out of her mouth, it's not accurate, it's meant only to bolster her sagging image, and its goal is to win a game most Troy residents don't even want to play.
Stop the games. End the controversy the new mayor has brought to Troy.
Recall Janice Daniels.