Hotter says what is expedient for the time

Rebecca Koeppen’s letter on Kellie Hotter’s performance as county commissioner bears reiteration (Herald, April 19), especially Hotter’s perspective on the County Compass.

The Compass is a guidance document and is replete with words like “leadership,” “stewardship,” “sustainability,” “regional cooperation,” “integrity” and “preservation of our heritage.”

What is clear is that, in Hotter’s view, the time has passed when these ideas have value for our community. Hotter was intrinsically involved in developing the Compass and she praised its adoption; now she no longer supports it, saying these are different times and this is a different board of commissioners.

She is right. It is a board with two commissioners who play “tea party says.” The tea party says words like “sustainability,” “regional cooperation” and “stewardship” do not belong in La Plata County government, and just like that, those words are gone.

The tea party says community efforts like the Comprehensive Plan and the Climate and Energy Action Plan, that Hotter helped launch and unwaveringly supported, are United Nations plots and, poof, her support vanishes. That the county spent hundreds of thousands of dollars and thousands of volunteer hours on these efforts is immaterial. Whether Hotter is a leader of the tea party or merely a well-positioned voice for its hysteria is also immaterial. What is relevant is that now the most important task of county commissioner, as actualized by Hotter, is making sure the tea party is served.

In her time as an elected official, Hotter has said what is expedient at the time, first one thing then another; first to get elected and now to bolster her base.

This is not just a matter of intellectual dishonesty; it is misleading the public for whom she was elected to work.

Once public trust is broken, how can people ever look at her and say to themselves, “I trust what she is sayingthis time. Last time she misled me, but this time she won’t.” Every one of us has a certain capacity for self-delusion, but to continue to kid yourself that repeated behavior will change is just,well, delusional.

Josh Joswick