The Rancho Santa Fe Post

Op-Ed: Implausible Denial in Election Twilight Zone

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RSF elections can be strange. Some elections are quiet and uncontested, while others just the opposite.

In April, I wondered if this election would be fact-based or agenda-based. We know now it is the latter. What is so important this year? Control and Board Blockers. Sometimes we enter a twilight zone of quiet, this year we are in a twilight zone of Implausible Denial.

Is there a four-way alliance involving that TC, GC, HOG, and PIC? Nothing says otherwise, but all four organizations deny it. 

PIC held a private candidate event in April, then clearly recommended three candidates in at least two emails, and continually since. One was from an influential GC and PIC member, the other from the PIC President himself. Both emails made it clear who was publicly approved, chosen, endorsed, supported, backed, suggested, recommended, advocated, etc.

Pick whatever word you want. The intent was clear. But one candidate and others deny it was an endorsement, pointing to technicalities. It is easy for a closed group with closed meetings and secret emails to try Implausible Denial, but the intent is obvious.

Elsewhere in our election twilight zone, Golf Club members received a letter making it clear the same three candidates were to receive votes.

Some GC events became one-sided campaign events. (See "Golf Club Endorsement Reveals Old Style Governance" Review Op-Ed May 26).

Last week the GC Manager denied (under orders?) any endorsement had taken place, and wrote:

"[T]he GC or its Board of Governors have not endorsed any of the six candidates."

Such a conclusion is laughable.

The reality is the endorsement letter was signed "Sincerely, RSF Golf Club Board of Governors," and each of the seven signatures had their official club title such as President, VP, Treasurer, ect. printed below. It looks and is official, and no amount of Implausible Denial can alter that. Truth suffers in the Twilight Zone.

Conclusion: This election is probably the most confusing in memory, with tickets, counter-charges, shifting positions by one side that superficially eliminated differences. The Implausible Denial used by some special interest groups is ridiculous. A four-way alliance is new and its dominance in this election by clubs and special interests is negative. 

Candidates can and should raise issues. But issues should be discussed and resolved during the whole year by the responsible groups, instead of being held and raised as election issues. 

Most of the issues voiced in the past month by the GC as a reason to vote for their candidates should have been discussed calmly in the past year. The Golf Club should not become a political organization. There already is one too many political organizations here in the election Twilight Zone. 

- Bill Strong


(Editor's Note: This article originally published in the RSF Review on June 2, 2016. It has been slightly modified for publication on the RSF Post.)