I wish that I could have responded while Paul was on the radio with Ric Tyler but I was trapped in the cab of my pickup on the way to a Dr’s appointment with no phone, no computer, left only to yell at the radio and pound the dash of my truck. Now home, I will attempt to engage in a far more constructive means of communication and debate. There are several things Mr. Tyler needs to be aware of:
First, I am one of the several individuals that Senator Thomas called immediately after his conversation with Paul Davis at the Blaine House barbecue to use our friendship and influence with Rep. Davis to ask him to run for the Senate seat. Doug explained to me that he was tired of the demands of the Senate District, which before redistricting was the largest east of the Mississippi, and felt also that it was important that Paul stay involved in politics. Doug Thomas also told me clearly that Doug had told Paul that he was willing to step aside if Paul wanted run for the new Senate seat, District 4.
I think the heated exchange between Mr. Tyler and Rep Davis on the East/West issue is in itself a flaming example to how this whole project was botched. Because Sen. Thomas and Peter Vique brought the public sector into the equation with the feasibility bill, Conservatives are now caught in the confusing and awkward debate on whether to defend infrastructure and progress or stand against government intrusion into private business because the two have become entwined and not separated. These heated debates are happening all over Piscataquis County right now, fracturing and weakening a very strong Republican bastion. This mismanagement falls directly at the feet of Senator Doug Thomas. Why was a feasibility study bill even needed when eventually the DOT would have done this very thing as a matter of course? Unless, Sen. Thomas thought this would be his own political crowning achievement; instead, it has become his political millstone.
Rep. Davis is right to be concerned that this project could end up on the backs of taxpayers. Given its clumsy fumble out of the gate, the taxpayers should be wary. The lack of transparency from the beginning has many strong republicans in the North Woods angry and distrustful of Sen. Thomas. Paul Davis is right and wise to be running for this seat. Simply put, the people of the 2nd district trust Paul Davis and they do not trust Doug Thomas.
Ric Tyler’s rebuke of Davis’ critique that Vique should have got his plan perfected in private before he went public shows a fundamental misunderstanding of good business. I am a small businessman. I can tell you that when I have a new business idea the first thing I am told by those I wish to present it to is that you better have all your plan in place, all your answers ready and prepared to handle the tough questions before you make your presentation. Peter Vique broke the cardinal rule of business. He wasn’t prepared for questions. As a result Doug Thomas, Piscataquis County and Northern Maine are paying the price for being involved either by choice or not.
Presenting your plan before its complete and ready reduces the chance of transparency insomuch that as the confusion ensues from lack of information one cannot even begin to present their ideas. All the time then is consumed by explaining and defending ill-informed attacks, putting out the constant fires of diversion, and all the truth is soon lost in the dust of contention. This is the East/West highway failure. Someone tried to expose the process before the product. Someones ego got ahead of common sense.
Finally, Ric Tyler’s foolish attack on Paul Davis that his questioning of the East/West debacle shows that Paul is anti-business is reckless at best and at worst a grotesque insult to the great conservative legacy that Paul Davis has firmly imprinted on the whole of the State of Maine. Mr. Tyler needs to apologize to Rep. Davis for his thoughtless attack. Spirited debate is one thing but groundless insults are another. It should be noted that I had to enter the Dr’s office before the conclusion of the interview and perhaps Mr. Tyler composed himself and retracted those errant statements. It should also be noted that I will be posting this email response on my website at The Maine Conservative Voice.