13 November 2010

Bill Sizemore

Today I had the pleasure to meet the infamous Bill Sizemore and hear him speak. I'm still trying to wrap my head around him. I have read and heard so much about him, the real man is lost in the misinformation.

I get that his biggest goal is to break the unions of their stronghold on Oregon politics. The unions are hell bent on destroying him. It’s truly David and Goliath. And that, right there, is why I like him.

His tactics have been questioned heavily but the result is an Oregon system of getting measures on the ballot that appears to be better for the people and more difficult for unions and big money.

But has he hurt the process? Have his tactics made it more painful for grassroots organizations to initiate change?

Just the mention of his name can send chills down the spines of people getting a process going. Will his involvement at any level, hurt or help them? Is he an asset or liability?

Love him or hate him, he has influence. He has access to donors, experience and support that any political group needs and pays dearly to acquire. But who can afford him? That knowledge is well beyond the financial reach of small groups or new entrants into the political arena. And again there is the name. Ignore the financial cost if you want to hire him. Can you afford to have his name tied to your cause? Even if you agree with his cause, would his reputation turn you away?

Bill Sizemore is a force to be reckoned with, and I would hate to be on the wrong side of him. But can you afford to have him in your corner?