Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid

If you live in or anywhere near B’ham, that is. Of what potentially cataclysmic event am I speaking? Well, the Black & White has handicapped the upcoming mayoral race, and look who’s the favorite:

Larry Langford, 2 to 1
Assets: Already considered a front-runner. King of the one-liner, which makes him a media favorite. An amusing rhetorical wizard rivaling Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, and Nick Saban for juicy sound bites. A visionary, no-nonsense politician overflowing with ideas to cure virtually every ill that afflicts the city—using other people’s money.

Liabilities: Visionland. Over time has offered just as many bad ideas as good ones. Did I mention Visionland? His “lead, follow, or get the hell out of my way” personality has left many people disenchanted. Doesn’t play well with others.

I’m gonna go out on a limb here and predict that if Langford wins the race, the next few years will see a huge buyer’s market in real estate as sane people try to sell their homes and flee the city.

So who can save us? The current mayor is running fourth:

Bernard Kincaid, 10 to 1
Assets: Owns a baseball cap with the word “MAYOR” prominently stitched above the bill. Has actually been the mayor for the past seven years. Has successfully evaded scandal. So far has chosen not to walk through downtown Birmingham in shackles, as Mayor Arrington did. Well known for not making bad decisions. Enjoys the underdog role.

Liabilities: Well known for not making decisions of any kind. Seven years after promising a change of leadership for the city, the city still lacks . . . leadership. Seen grandstanding for media after the 2005 Ensley police shootings, declaring that Birmingham police officers would one day become the highest paid in the state. Now on the record as opposing pay increases for public safety officials. No legacy; likely will be ignored in history books.

Not too encouraging. Nope. Not at all.

In second is Carole Smitherman:

Carole Smitherman, 6 to 1
Assets: Experienced lawyer/politician currently holding the position of president of the Birmingham City Council. Gets plenty of face time on Birmingham’s cable channel 4 every Tuesday night. Narrowly lost to Kincaid in the 2003 mayoral election. Has an established political base.

Liabilities: Is there any financial support for this candidacy outside the city limits of Birmingham?

I’ve got a major quibble with that one. Has anyone besides me ever watched the City Council meetings on channel 4? OMG, if there is an argument for secrecy in government, it is those meetings. I mean, wow, it’s just one buffoon after another at the podium speaking to a bunch of councilors who usually look either 1) heavily sedated, or 2) really p.o.’d to even be there, and who usually respond with either 1) irrelevant ramblings (probably caused by the sedatives) or 2) self righteous indignation at any suggestion they might, you know, be responsible for something. I watched it this week, and some guy named The Reverend/Dr./Bishop/Apostle Full-of-Himself said that a couple hundred homicides had occurred “on the council’s watch.” Most of them snored right through it, but I swear, if Joel Montgomery could shoot lasers from his eyes, he would have made a burnt offering of the good minister right there on the spot.

So anyway, if being part of that is an asset for Larry Langford’s top competition, then I am about to start looking for a good real estate agent.

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3 Comments on “Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid”

  1. Dan Says:

    Here’s my handicaps:

    Bernard Kincaid: Oh no…

    Carole Smitherman: Noooo!

    Larry Langford: Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!


  2. Don’t forget that businesses (and their employees) will flee if at all possible. They pay taxes without being able to vote. And those taxes that can’t be voted on are the ones that Langford in particular LOVES to raise (see also, Jefferson County sales tax). Never seen him raise property taxes, but I bet he’d raise that occupational tax and sales tax in a heartbeat! And how exactly does poor Nick Saban get stuck in that comparison? 🙂

    You also neglect to mention that Kincaid make one MAJOR decision in the last few years… He had the city change the font on their emails to Arial 14.

    The real reason why nobody of substance is running is because the candidates must be Birmingham residents, and all the sane people left LONG ago.

    About the City Council meetings… They get more interesting when the homeless people from Linn Park start showing up!


  3. it seems the shifting democrats of montgomery and birmingham are turning both cities into a jungle of lawless thugs. hmm, leviathan comes to mind. well, so be it. those with money will continue voting with their feet, seeking government jurisdictions that enforce the rule of law and private property rights. anything less is a john rogers cruise on the river styx. an obvious valhalla to black democrats.


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