Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Chip Johnson Gets Religion on Celebrity Mayors

By Chris Thompson
Tue, Jul 29, 2008 at 8:18 AM

Hey, maybe celebrity mayors aren't such a good idea. That's the gist of Chip Johnson's new column this morning, as the Chron writer notices that guys like Ron Dellums and Jerry Brown tend to be detached and barely interested in the prosaic details of governing the city. "If Oakland's experience with celebrity mayors provides a lesson, it would be that hard work, long hours and a continuous vigil for opportunities - and efficiencies - are the ingredients to becoming a successful mayor," Johnson writes. "There's no doubt that a dash of celebrity will go a long way in a political campaign but Brown's and Dellums' terms have shown that that is not enough by itself. ... Beware of the celebrity candidates, and listen to the substance of the words before believing the messenger - even if it comes from a well-known, longtime pitchman." Welcome to the club, Chip! Now, if only someone had been nagging Oakland about this three years ago...

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