A letter recently mailed by Sunny Isles Beach candidate Harvey Busch had some curious statements that should be questioned and/or clarified given that they are confusing or
outright misleading. The statements taken directly from his letter are the following (in bold):
I live in Sunny Isles Full time and understanding surfacing problems.
First, we would like to offer Mr. Harvey Busch some free advice. If he cannot construct a proper
sentence, we recommend that he consult an editor. We imagine that he meant to say “and I understand surfacing problems,” though, even with the grammatical correction, the statement, like the rest of his letter, is vague and extraordinarily uninformative.
Secondly, I am retired and unlike my opponent, I will devote full time to your needs.
Again, the sentence is grammatically daring, but that is not what is most alarming. Inherent in this statement is the assumption that being a commissioner is a full time job. It isn’t. Commissioners don’t run the City. Their job is to set policies. Mr. Harvey Busch seems to think that, as an 82-year-old retiree, he is better qualified to do the job based solely on the fact that he’ll show up every day. Right now there are three sitting Commissioners who are non-retirees, and there’s about to be a fourth sworn in (Commissioner-Elect Jennifer Levin). These four Commissioners have, collectively, decades of business experience and are currently applying their knowledge and experience to the job in order to make intelligent, informed decisions that affect the future of our City. This includes decisions ranging from engineering and building, legal decisions, quality of life decisions and, most importantly, financial decisions. At the end of the day, if you were undergoing surgery, would you want the experienced surgeon who could do it in four hours or the one who has lived a long time, has rarely performed a surgery, and thinks it should take all day?
His [Bud Scholl’s] frequent out of City and State excursions are indicative of his commitment.
Imbedded in this sentence are even more assumptions that Harvey Busch hopes the readers will accept as some kind of fact. First, let’s look at the use of the word “excursion” –which is intended to convey the idea that Commissioner Scholl is going on frequent trips for pleasure. Harvey Busch, however, offers ZERO FACTS OR DETAILS. As such, his misguided allegation is a glaring example of his effort to mislead voters as well as of his lack of understanding of a typical business executive’s day-to-day activities. Apparently, Mr. Busch does not grasp that part of a businessperson’s responsibility may include conducting business beyond the City’s boundaries. Furthermore, he goes on to state that these “excursions” are frequent, but does not say how he personally knows when his opponent is or isn’t in the area. Chances are he does not really know. And if he does, then that’s outright disturbing.
Despite Mr. Busch’s effort to distract voters from the facts, the bottom line is that being active in the community one serves as well as in the current business environment provides valuable perspective when making policy decisions that will affect the rest of us for years to come.
I signed an ethics oath voluntarily, which my opponent refused to sign.
There are two noteworthy points on this tricky sentence (free of grammatical errors, by the
way – well done Mr. Busch!). First of all, by sending out this letter, Harvey Busch may be in violation of this ethics oath to which he refers. Paragraph seven (7) of the voluntary statement of Fair Campaign Practices of the Miami-Dade Dade Commission on Ethics and Public Trust, found at this link: http://www.miamidade.gov/ethics/pdf/DECLARATION.pdf, clearly states that the candidate shall “run a positive campaign emphasizing [his/her] qualifications for office
and positions on issues of public concern.” Paragraph eight (8) states that the
candidate“will limit [his/her] attacks on an opponent to legitimate challenges
to that person’s record, qualifications, and positions.” If this is indeed
the voluntary ethics oath that candidate Busch is so proud to have signed, then
his letter is evidence of his colossal failure to uphold it. He clearly is not
running a positive campaign and has not ONCE mentioned his opponent’s record,
qualifications, or positions.
Second, Mr. Harvey Busch fails to mention that there is a non-voluntary / mandatory fair campaign practices ordinance to which all candidates are bound. Therefore, signing the
voluntary oath does not make a candidate more ethical or more likely to run an
ethical campaign than his or her opponents. Case in point: Two years ago,
there were three candidates who ran for commission seat #4. Two signed the voluntary
oath and one did not. Of the two who signed, one was later convicted for an
elections-related crime and the other is awaiting trial for alleged illegal activities that he conducted in the middle of his campaigning (refer to Miami Heral article from 10/09/2012 posted on this site). In short, the voluntary oath is rendered meaningless if those who take it aim to violate it as Harvey Busch seems to already have done.
He has resorted to personal attacks and attempted to bully me to withdraw.
Has anyone received any letters or seen any advertisements personally attacking Mr. Busch? How exactly was Harvey Busch bullied? Again, he offers ZERO FACTS. Please, Mr. Busch, if there is something the community should know, you should tell us. But do not
insult our intelligence by making bald allegations hoping that voters will blindly follow.
I am proud to be endorsed by the Miami-Dade PBA
Let’s clarify a few things. The Miami-Dade PBA is the Police Benevolent Association. Upon reading Mr. Busch’s letter, this is what we found most surprising of all. A phone call to the PBA revealed the FACT, (again, Mr. Busch does not seem too concerned with presenting whole facts,) that the PBA endorsed BOTH CANDIDATES. The reasons for this will be explored further, and we will be sure to let our readers know as soon as we get more details.
OUR CLOSING THOUGHTS
The mailings of the two candidates give voters a very clear picture of what each has to offer. Eighty-two (82) year old Harvey Busch’s mailing offers very little in substance to his Valued Voters. His ideas are vague and lackluster and quite possibly in violation of the Miami-Dade Ethical Campaign Practices Ordinance. Mr. Busch goes out of his way
to smear his opponent with distortions and unfounded arguments. Mr. Busch’s mailing gives voters no idea of who he really is or what he has accomplished in his life. Instead, he offers extraordinarily flawed arguments that cannot stand up to the slightest scrutiny.
In contrast, Fifty-three (53) year old Commissioner Bud Scholl’s mailing [available by clicking on the link at: https://sibreporter.net/?attachment_id=770 ] tells much about a man who is ready and capable to handle a wide variety of projects and responsibilities. As an accomplished individual in both the private and public sector, Commissioner Scholl is the only choice in this race as he has proved to be a great friend to the community and worthy of four more years.