Last night, I watched the end of the mayoral debate on channel 17. (I watched the beginning on the night it aired live.) As I watched, I came to the conclusion that I had hoped I would never reach – I have to place my second place vote for Hinda Miller.
I dislike what I have seen of Miller so much that I think it will actually cause me physical pain to fill in the oval next to her name.
First things first, I have never met Hinda Miller and I do not know her personally, or anyone who knows her personally. For all I know she could be the nicest person ever. What I do know about her is that she has a chronic case of foot-in-the-mouth.
I resisted the urge to dislike Miller because of her wealth. I am not the class-warfare type. In fact, entrepreneurial success stories like hers are what make America so great. I do however have a hard time trusting politicians who are not impacted by the property tax situation in Burlington. I hear a lot of the well-off liberals here in the South End of town, who say, “I don’t care how much it costs me in taxes” to ideas that they think will add value to that liberal utopia they picture in their empty heads, paying no mind to the rest of us who struggle to make ends meet by eating boxed macaroni and cheese. (That’s Kraft Dinner for those of you – like Ms. Miller – who hail from our neighbor to the north.)
I knew that I should not hold her success against her – that would make me no better than Bernie Sanders. Besides, there is no shortage of people who have money, but still oppose over-taxation. She could be one, right? So, I decided to listen to her ideas and give her a fair chance.
Strike one: At the wards 2 and 3 NPA (that’s the Old North End), a woman asked Candidate Miller how the voters in the Old North End would know that she understands their struggles, given the fact that she lives in the Hill Section and has lots of money. Her reply? She won’t judge them for where they live, if they don’t judge her for where she lives.
How nice. So does that mean she is judging them for where they live because I can bet you they are judging her. If not for where she lives, then definitely for that remark.
Strike two: Every time the topic of job creation comes up, she touts her experience in creating Jogbra and creating all those jobs. She fails to mention that those jobs (110 of them) left years ago to North Carolina.
Strike three: In an interview on the blog the Vermont Daily Briefing, she made a yoga reference and followed by saying she can’t talk that way usually because people in the New North End would think she is weird.
Get over yourself Ms. Miller; it’s not just hoity-toity rich girls from the Hill Section who understand the concepts of yoga and balance.
There’s more, but you get the point.
I decided that I would not vote for Hinda Miller in any place. I would not be able to bring myself to do it.
Last night it dawned on me that I have to make a second place vote. It comes down to Miller and Kiss. I think both are equally qualified. Miller’s experience with Jogbra and Kiss’ experience at CVOEO bring both similar skill sets.
I think Kiss is more in touch with what struggling people need in this city, in typical Progressive fashion. That was why I was leaning toward him. That true Progressive nature turned out to be his undoing in my book.
This city needs to grow the tax base. That is the one and only thing that is going to solve the financial difficulties this city is facing. I am convinced that Miller knows that far more than Kiss (though neither as much as Curley). I am also afraid that Kiss will continue the Progressive tradition of being against “corporations” and only supporting non-profits. One needs only to look to the City Market debacle to see how that attitude hurts the low-moderate income segment of our city. It does nothing to grow our tax base, either.
So, as hard as it will be to vote for someone who I find snobby and clueless when it comes to dealing with people who are not of her “wealth and social status,” she is the best of the remaining candidates for my second place vote.