Some strange things are going on…
— In the Brookside CVS yesterday, I heard an indiscreet employee — a guy stacking product on shelves — indicate he intended to vote for Donald Trump. It was the first time I’d heard someone come close to saying out loud that he or she would cast a vote for Trump. But like I say, it was indirect…He was talking to a man who appeared to be a customer — an African-American — and said he didn’t think it would be fair of the Republican Party to yank the nomination from Trump at the convention this summer.
The customer just grunted. Getting no reaction, the shelf stacker moved on to next Tuesday’s E-tax election. He correctly explained to the customer that the election was on renewal of the longstanding earnings tax, which generates more than $230 million a year, or 40 percent of the city’s general fund. He also noted that the revenue went for things like police and fire services…Having completed my purchase, I stood nearby, listening…listening and feeling certain the employee was about to utter some negative comment, despite his careful explanation of the tax. Sure enough, after a pause, he said, “Now, my feeling is the city ought to do a better job of budgeting.”
Again, the customer offered no comment. Blood pressure rising, I nearly plunged into the, uh, conversation. But I held off, deeming it unwise to launch into a drugstore-aisle debate with someone I had never seen before…What I would have said, though, was: “Suppose CVS cut your salary by 40 percent today. How would that affect your household budget, and would you just be able to “tighten up” and go merrily on?”
Disclosure: I’m working with the campaign committee pushing for renewal of the tax, which is paid by people either living or working in Kansas City. A full 50 percent of the revenue comes from people living outside Kansas City. To me, the tax is extremely fair, especially in light of the fact that area residents who don’t live in the city — many of whom have actually fled the city — help pay for services and amenities that Kansas City residents are financing, for the most part…Next Tuesday, vote “YES” on Kansas City Question 1.
— As many of you know, I’m friends with former Mayor Charlie Wheeler. I’ve done volunteer work for him in two campaigns — when he ran for county executive in 2006 and when he ran for state treasurer two years later. Yesterday and today, I’ve heard from three friends who read that Wheeler is now running for Missouri governor. One person who contacted me, former KC Star reporter Kevin Murphy, wrote: “Better get your campaign know-how and apparatus unpacked. Charlie…will need your help.”
Before there’s a groundswell for me to be Charlie’s campaign manager, campaign chairman, press secretary or driver, let me say this: If appointed, I will not serve.
— I see Kauffman Stadium is offering some new concession items this season. For example, there’s the Champions Alley Burger ($19), described as “a cheese-stuffed, tempura-battered cheddar bacon burger with sweet slaw, chipotle ketchup and fried pickle on a Farm to Market roll.” Then there’s the Champions Alley Dog ($15) — “a bacon-wrapped, tempura-battered foot-long hot dog with sweet slaw and chipotle ketchup on a Farm to Market pretzel bun.”
The only thing that appeals to me about either of those is the Farm to Market bread.
For the health-minded, there’s a kale salad ($10), “with strawberries, apple, Marcona almonds, Boursin cheese and a poppy seed vinaigrette.”
I’ll pass on the kale, too. I’ll spend my $10 on a regular hot dog and a regular Pepsi.