The Mayor and her antics have been a really valuable source of teaching for the citizens on many levels. But as a language arts teacher, I especially love how she helps me by giving me examples of literary techniques. The two she uses best are HYPERBOLE and IRONY.
Hyperbole is the use of exaggeration as a rhetorical device or figure of speech. It's often used to create strong feelings or impressions, but is not meant to be taken literally.
Here are some examples:
EXAMPLE 1: a supporter of the Mayor recently stated that there was an "AMAZING show of support for Mayor Janice Daniels" during a pre-council meeting rally in her honor. Here is a picture from that event:
I count roughly ten individuals, one of whom is a child who cannot vote. Amazing is one word. I can think of a few others. Coincidentally, that same supporter, also pictured, stated that the TPD was in force that night "in case things got out of hand." Actually, they were represented in force at the meeting because they were being honored for winning a sharpshooting award. But let's not let facts get in the way of our hyperbolic statements...
EXAMPLE 2: the Mayor is a businesswoman who brings that experience to her position as Mayor. She claims her real estate experience as part of that resume of skills. She has also referred to herself as a small business owner.
Click here to see the business the Mayor owns.
Methinks her business acumen is "knot" quite what we were led to believe.
EXAMPLE 3: the Mayor would show us how the city budget has enough money to fund five libraries without the need for a dedicated millage.
She later retracted that, labeling it herself as an example of a "hyperbolic statement" made by a private citizen. She's right...it was hyperbolic, and she was a private citizen -- RUNNING FOR PUBLIC OFFICE. Her silence at the budget study sessions was deafening, though, showing that her knowledge of municipal operations was also represented in a hyperbolic way.
Irony has several definitions and uses, but the one that applies here is "situational" irony -- the contradiction between what one expects and what actually happens.
EXAMPLE 1: The Mayor prides herself on the fiscally responsible use of tax revenues.
She holds her "no" votes on every single Transit Center vote up as proof. She has also voted down every measure I can think of in the city budget that would have had anything to do with the nominal increase of an operating millage (like the pass-through type millages that cover our sewage/garbage service) or the spending of city monies on things she calls wasteful -- like the membership in the Michigan Municipal League.
But IRONICALLY, once the majority council passed the resolution to pay the MML membership dues, she spoke up enthusiastically about wanting to attend the next MML conference on Mackinac Island for "networking." On the city dime...
EXAMPLE 2: The Mayor opposed the Transit Center Project and termed it a wasteful use of federal funds that should be sent back to Washington to offset the national deficit.
Now, we can talk all day long about how inane and ignorant her stance on this was