Thursday, July 05, 2007

Advance article for A.E. about Mark DeSantis -- from Mark Rauterkus

I posted an article via The American Entrepreneur newsletter in advance of the Mark DeSantis interview slated for Saturday.
The American Entrepreneur - Newsletter Articles A business person, Mark DeSantis, is gearing up his political campaign against Luke Ravenstahl. A number of common threads appear beyond our first names, ambitions, age-group (DeSantis is 47, I'm 48), home towns, party politics and entrepreneur's spirit.
Here is the entire article on my blog too.

Mark Rauterkus pondering Mark DeSantis and the 2007 general election campaigns
(Rauterkus is a candidate for city council, an advocate for Ron Paul in the 2008 Presidental campaign, and a free-wheeling blogger.)
A business person, Mark DeSantis, is gearing up his political campaign against Luke Ravenstahl. A number of common threads appear beyond our first names, ambitions, age-group (DeSantis is 47, I'm 48), home towns, party politics and entrepreneur's spirit.

Both of us jumped into the political fray to run for mayor of Pittsburgh under the GOP banner. My run in 2001 hatched from frustration too. Both of us are upset with the leadership from Grant Street.

Candidate DeSantis and I talked before his official kick off. My insights and tactical bits of wisdom, coupled with some action points, were delivered in person. Now is the time for public noise.

This year's race for mayor is going to be a two-way ordeal. I pondered the possibilities of running for mayor and county executive, in the same same election, as a Libertarian. Rather, my efforts for the next months are going to focus as a candidate, again, for Pittsburgh's city council, district 3.

We all have roles to play.

Mark DeSantis has two jobs. He needs to expose himself, first. Second, DeSantis needs to reveal a plan and process that gives voters confidence that he'd make a good mayor for the next two years. That's it for him.

Mark DeSantis is slated to be a guest with Ron Morris. I'll tune in and be sure to download the podcast. Furthermore, I'll attempt to reconstruct the issues and ideas DeSantis delivers. When DeSantis is a guest on shows, he is able to expose himself.

DeSantis needs to be everywhere. He needs to meet and greet on the buses, outside Giant Eagle, in the Strip District, at the bars on the South Side, and at little league games. DeSantis needs to be at churches, temples and fire halls. He'll have to invest in door-to-door, telephone, the works. People's comfort in Mark DeSantis has to skyrocket.

Second, DeSantis needs to perform and execute in the creative realm. He has to deliver a vision that makes sense and earns trust and support.

The rest, and there is plenty more that is yet unsaid, is beyond the control of Mark DeSantis within this election cycle. All of the remaining matters still unresolved are up to us. Voters, citizens, business people, fellow politicians, and of-course, the media have much more to do.

Mark DeSantis has two tasks. We, the people, have countless matters to attend to.

This campaign is about DeSantis and Ravenstahl, however, the city and region is about us all. Everyone has roles to play. Without real civic engagement in this election, the city is toast.

Hopefully, DeSantis can stick to his tasks. Meanwhile, everyone else enlivens and pulls Pittsburgh into the future with a sense of long-term hope. I think that the real burden of the 2007 mayor's race isn't upon the backs of either DeSantis nor Ravenstahl. Rather, it is with the leaders of all sectors throughout the region.

Mark DeSantis could be the next mayor of Pittsburgh. Anything is possible. However, that milestone isn't the real goal we are called to accomplish this fall.

As listeners, here are a few of our duties:

1. Luke Ravenstahl needs to be discredited. Mark DeSantis can't do much of that.

2. Eduction and experience needs to be valued. DeSantis has it. Luke doesn't. We need to point that out.

3. One party domination needs to be terminated for the city. Opposition matters. Opposition comes in many shapes and sizes against oppressors.

4. The stage must be set for the showdown between DeSantis and Ravenstahl. Real audience hunger for repeated skirmishes must be vocalized. Daily events must be organized, promoted and flung.

5. Hard questions, follow-up, and pushing for depth and scope needs to occur. We can't settle for the same answers time and again. When Michael Lamb ran for mayor two years ago, he told of the selling of dog licenses by both the city and county. I heard Lamb's dog licenses script a hundred times. Yikes. Sustain the conversations.

6. Buzz about Pittsburgh needs to resonate. Dividing the city is fine -- if passion builds. Bring it on. Create moments of political boldness that take people out of their comfort zones.

7. Expect flaws. Deal with them. Don't let a few pimples derail DeSantis nor the efforts of restoring hope in the city. For example, I love Ron Paul as a 2008 presidential candidate. Of course, I don't agree with everything he says. But his platform is wonderful and I want you all to know about

8. Teamwork, above all else is mandatory. Without teamwork, the downward spiral continues and Pittsburgh will become a ghost town of one-party jerks who are clueless in matters of liberty and wealth creation. Candidates need teams. Teams need to interact. Leagues and legions need to get orders, make maneuvers and skirmish. All team efforts start with recruitment. Find out now, who is in and who is out.

9. Everything in life is about either protecting equity or else building equity. Pittsburgh in 2007 has little to protect. The capital budget of the city has been at ZERO for years. Now we must do something, grow, be aggressive, conduct outreach. Pittsburgh is at the brink. We have to swim upstream with all our might. Shift to overdrive.

It is his campaign, but it is our city.


Anonymous said...

Mark - this is a great article. Very intersting insight.

Mark Rauterkus said...


Well, are you in or are you out? What can you do to host a debate? Write to the newspapers / tv stations, etc.

What hits home with YOU, personally. What acts can you tackle, this week and next week?

Anonymous said...

DeSantis needs to publicly denounce George W. Bush -- perhaps even call for his impeachment. Think of the publicity he would get from it, and it would make a lot of Democrats take a closer look at him. What's the downside? No more Christmas cards from Poppy and Babs Bush? Big deal.

Mark Rauterkus said...

I tend to agree. When I was a "R" but a candidate in 2000, I was stumping for Nader from here to Indiana, PA.

But, that's one reason I didn't win the R nomination. But, I still got more primary votes than DeSantis got with his 950 write-ins.

This is also why I'm "L" now -- because of the goofy war and war-machine the USA has become. I don't want the USA to be dropping bombs on others around the world.

I think DeSantis could denounce the war and leave the lame-duck President out of it.

I asked DeSantis to back Ron Paul for 2008. That would be a great step in the right direction.

There is a trend to have Rs switch out of the R party. But, the rather fight than switch statement has merits too.

The leap of faith for the voters to DeSantis over Ravenstahl is an easy one. The leap away from D to R, in 2007, is going to be really, really hard. Unless, DeSantis would do something to build a bridge to those of us that hate what GWB has done.

Finally, you are right. There is no "downside" to a public statement of scorn about war and leadership from the White House. A few Rs might not be so happy. However, those folks are not going to engage in Pittsburgh's political process yet anyway.

Thomas Leturgey said...

It would mean NOTHING for Mark DeSantis to denounce President Bush. Republicans don't need another liberal member of the GOP who caters to the leftists.

While I support Mr. DeSantis, he is nonetheless a write-in Republican in a super-union rust belt town.

He would get ZERO ink around the country and do nothing for those who want to see a change on Grant Street.

Anonymous said...

Change on Grant Street...say it aint long as the D machine is in full power, and the LEFT is running the propaganda machine, well, there not going to be any change.

Forget about it...