The candidate and the TV commercial
July 21, 2010
OPINION BY DON REGAN, Ph.D.
A question, relative to the current Sheriff’s race–Why is one principle candidate for Sheriff now the TV spokesperson for a local loan Company, in which his wife has a direct and immediate vested interest?
It seems at best compromising to that candidate. And at worst counterintuitive for a rational political candidate for any office to be a primary spokesperson for a commercial banking ad, TV, radio or whatever.
I found/find it disconcerting, and wondering what could possibly be the underlying motivation of Ian Parkinson to be doing such a most clearly unusual political thing? Does he owe that business or his wife a favor, for influence or money given or to be given? Or is he just seeking new employment as a TV spokesperson, based on his new and sought after local celebrity?
This seemingly and otherwise superficially innocent one minute TV commercial in its questionable uniqueness, other than raising the above concerns, also speaks manifestly and directly to the judgment of the man.
What other high profile public individual has or would represent a commercial banking interest on local TV in today’s economic world, and throughout the very districts in which he is administrating his singularly high profile race for one the most important top law enforcement positions in our county?
A county which has been rocked repeatedly both recently and throughout the term of our current Sheriff by both definitive and perceived Departmental and individual transgressions. Perceptions and actions deeply destructive to the credibility and authority of the Department he runs, and morale of the dutiful community Deputies he leads.
This unusual and unwise act seems very much out of place in this campaign or any campaign, and done at a personal and political cost most if not all politicians and public servants running for or serving in office would never be willing to pay. Particularly in the face of this particular Agency’s administrative history. Many more have suffered for far less ill conceived dubious public displays.
If Parkinson can not separate his personal vested interests from his public prosecutorial responsibilities as our principal law enforcement officer; then will he always put his personal self interest ahead of the public good?
What are we to make of it? We voters deserve to know the facts behind this not inconsequential behavior, before we go to the polls to elect what we all intensely intend and most sincerely hope will be a fully and refreshingly committed honorable new Sheriff.
Is there really going to be a “New Sheriff in Town”, or just the same old self serving compromises intrigues and discomforting public displays, we have sadly seen and come to know from the previous sheriffs’ cabals?
I, and I am sure, others would like to know — What’s the catch here?
Dr. Don Regan lives in Arroyo Grande. He was the Republican nominee for the 22nd District Congressional election in 2004.