IF ONLY WINNING RACES WERE THIS EASY
Caribbean Life’s endorsement of Rock Hackshaw: “our endorsement goes to Rock Hackshaw who promises to bring his activist role to resolving issues of education and crime, and seeks more sweeping powers for the Civilian Complaint Review Board”.
Many people have called up since it was announced that I had snagged the endorsements from the editorial boards of the two largest local newspapers (weeklies): Flatbush Life and Caribbean Life. They are suddenly excited about my prospects of winning this race. Most people had seen me as a long shot, given that incumbents get re-elected at a 98% rate. Most people had questioned my decision to run for office again after a nine year hiatus. Many had selfishly proffered that I should stay blogging: since they enjoyed my columns very much and felt that I would stop writing once in the council.
During this challenging campaign, these pervasive views (and many others that were worse) didn’t increase my chances of victory. Plus -of course- there are always those “nabobs of negativism” who seem to populate the galleries of serious political discourse, whether it is on the blogs, or on the promenade, or within my own campaign committee. My fundraising suffered not only because of the strange economy we now find ourselves in, but also because very few folks felt I had a realistic chance of winning -no matter how many times I told them so. But that’s okay: I have been doubted before (many times).
Winning endorsements and blowing out debates is nothing new for me. I have been a public speaker most of my life. That’s the easy part. Running a campaign with scores of egos to feed is tough: real tough. My biggest mistake on this campaign was to include too many people on the decision making. I had one advisor who warned me from jump that my universe of twenty committee members, staffers and advisors was way too large (“it’s not corporate America”). I should have listened. It would have saved me lots of stress (and money too).
Every decision of mine has been questioned. Every idea I ran through the team was scrutinized beyond the pale. Everyday I was subject to needless criticism, and yet, so few listen to the real decisions: far less follow instructions.
My leadership style is one of laughter, weird-humor, opportunity, exposure, ideas, creativity, openness and collectivity: it’s a tough style to try to develop when most people refuse to use Preparation-H on their individual egos, no matter how many times you tell them to check their egos at the door before entering the team meetings. I abhor assinninity. Sometimes I can be brutally blunt. I have been known to say “you are talking shit” in team meetings. Nothing personal: just facts.
I love people to back up their arguments with -amongst many other things- history, common sense, sound-theory and/or statistics. You don’t always get this from those who are argumentative even when their positions have been logically refuted by the same formulae.
Then some individuals leave when things don’t go their way. Others sulk and drag. Then they get petty when the door hits their butt on the way out. And please don’t ask for individual sacrifice when they disagree with the call: some people sulk like two year olds. I must admit that this campaign has been enlightening. I need a degree in psychology to run as an insurgent again. It’s that tough. I need to find a nudist colony so I could unwind.
If winning political races were as easy as snagging endorsements and winning debates, then I would have been elected years ago. If winning campaigns were as easy as writing speeches and delivering them, then I would have been mayor since high school. But it isn’t. And that’s why I wouldn’t stop campaigning until the polls are closed at 9:00 pm on the night of Tuesday 15th September.
Stay tuned in folks: we are coming down the homestretch. I intend to win. I expect to win. I am expecting to get over 50% of the voters who turn up. Don’t say I didn’t tell you way ahead of the news headlines.
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