Innovation is a concept that is rarely mentioned when someone talks about Pensacola. The Winners & Losers’ “Mothers of Innovation” advisory committee has decided to tackle this and come up with these innovative ideas, call them our “20 Solutions for 2012.”
Grumpy Old Men: The Blue Wahoos purchase two seats along the right field line where C.C. Elebash and a crotchety old fart of his choice can sit every game and complain that baseball isn’t worthwhile. They will be the Pensacola version of the old men on “The Muppet Show.” At the end of each game, the JumboTron will broadcast their dismal recap of the game.
Broker Workshop: In Pensacola, everybody wants to be the go-between, the ones who broker deals with the famous and powerful. Need to get to Mayor Ashton Hayward? There is a long list of people claiming to have special access. This workshop teaches you how to get in on the fun. There is a special breakout session on name dropping. Remember in Pensacola, it’s not what you know, but who you know.
Certified Leaders: A plethora of African-Americans claim to be leaders in Pensacola, especially when there is money on the table. Some hold elected offices while others are self-appointed chairmen of non-profits. But who really has street cred? Who can deliver a crowd on an issue? We need a certification process to separate the pretenders from the contenders. Unfortunately, as long as there are gullible whites willing to throw money at them and black leaders unwilling to challenge the pretenders, Pensacola will remain divided.
Pink Elephant Hunt: Certain issues linger in Pensacola that few people are willing to tackle. They are the pink elephants in the room that people choose to ignore. When it comes to economic development, the pink elephant is public education. We have to be innovative and creative in reaching our minority students. The Obama administration gave our school district $57 million in stimulus funds. Unfortunately, the district used it to nearly double its reserves. It’s time to hunt these pink elephants and rid ourselves of them.
Sealed Letters: Local elected officials suffer from memory loss. They promise reform and innovation. However, they become that which they replaced. The bureaucracies, influence peddlers and the power of office corrupt their idealism. Every elected official should have to write a letter to himself on the day before the election, including why he is running and what he wants to accomplish. We will publish it one year later and see how his actions match up to it.