What SDPD Chief Bill Lansdowne displays in this recording is the malaise through out the upper echelons of the government of The City of San Diego where there is a refusal to participate in the General Assembly process. If Chief Lansdowne himself really wanted to communicate with Occupy San Diego, he or his staff would have asked anyone in OSD what is the best way to do it. Lansdowne would have been told that he had to participate in a general assembly. That’s not to say that he would have been received politely by the GA, but it would have shown some understanding of the group. He didn’t show it, nor did the Mayor or the City Council. It is this last group which have shown the least amount of imagination, courage or gumption to avoid police action at The Civic Center.
If they were going to show some service to avoid police action against OSD, the mayor, council or their staff would have taken the time to participate too. And, if they were watching what was going on outside of their offices, they would have found out that they would have had as much right as any other concerned citizen to participate in a GA. Like another story where several things get messed up and there is plenty of blame to go all around, The Mayor and The City Council, all 9 of them, appear to be the Lt. Keefers of this story: they could have at least tried to avoid all of this, show some initiative if not leadership, and put up with the bother of parking their asses for a few hours of a cold, dark evening on the concrete of the Civic Center or damp gravel of Children’s Park to mediate the issue. One would think that The Mayor and The City Council would have taken a few minutes of a work day this past October and asked the Occupiers what they wanted; had they made that effort, the elected officers would have learned that much of what Occupy San Diego wants would fix many of the city’s problems, that the Mayor and much of the Council could have a potentially powerful constituency. Instead, what we saw was the standard modus operandi from just about any mayor or city council member in San Diego for as long as I can remember: milquetoast conduct, no one taking any risks in office inflexibly standing on ceremonious conduct and sanctimonious status; thus reaffirming occupiers’ cynicism about the corrupt state of politics and public service.