Curly tales of the city

Porkopolis

We're So Proud!
Cincinnati has again registered on the national consciousness, and for once it has nothing to do with those damn flying pigs. This time it's Mother Jones magazine's annual list of the country's top 400 political contributors — six of whom are well-known Cincinnati businessmen.

Carl Lindner, along with wife Edyth, ranks No. 6 with $1,216,000 in donations from January 1999 to Feb. 1, 2001, an amount Mother Jones says was divided between Republicans and Democrats. The magazine calls the Cincinnati financier a role model for political movers and shakers: "Since 1994, Carl Lindner and his Chiquita banana empire have been Exhibit A in the fight to reform campaign finance. And through his millions in campaign contributions to both parties, he has persuaded the nation's top politicians to marshal U.S. foreign policy to fight Chiquita's trade war against the European Union."

Cintas Chairman Richard Farmer gets even loftier treatment, as an anecdote about his opposition to President Clinton's repetitive-motion injury legislation leads off the magazine article: "Like other big businesses, Cintas had lobbied to block the rules, saying the cost of implementing them would be 'devastating.' Farmer had no trouble, however, finding money to try to implement his political agenda."

Mother Jones ranks Farmer and wife Joyce No. 15 among the nation's biggest contributors, with $721,000 donated in the past election cycle, all to Republicans.

Other local bigwigs — also favoring Republicans — include real estate developer William O. Brisben (No. 149, $287,200), fruit wholesaler Robert Castellini (No. 283, $199,000) and two of George W. Bush's business backers, William O. DeWitt Jr. (No. 247, $216,550) and Mercer Reynolds (No. 318, $180,673).

You can find the entire list of 400 donors at www.motherjones.com.

All Together Now!
After working through fractious internal bickering — with Scott Seidewitz and progressive cohorts still feeling left out in the cold — local Democrats are poised to name their officially endorsed Cincinnati City Council slate.

We're So Proud!
Cincinnati has again registered on the national consciousness, and for once it has nothing to do with those damn flying pigs. This time it's Mother Jones magazine's annual list of the country's top 400 political contributors — six of whom are well-known Cincinnati businessmen.

Carl Lindner, along with wife Edyth, ranks No. 6 with $1,216,000 in donations from January 1999 to Feb. 1, 2001, an amount Mother Jones says was divided between Republicans and Democrats. The magazine calls the Cincinnati financier a role model for political movers and shakers: "Since 1994, Carl Lindner and his Chiquita banana empire have been Exhibit A in the fight to reform campaign finance. ... And through his millions in campaign contributions to both parties, he has persuaded the nation's top politicians to marshal U.S. foreign policy to fight Chiquita's trade war against the European Union."

Cintas Chairman Richard Farmer gets even loftier treatment, as an anecdote about his opposition to President Clinton's repetitive-motion injury legislation leads off the magazine article: "Like other big businesses, Cintas had lobbied to block the rules, saying the cost of implementing them would be 'devastating.' Farmer had no trouble, however, finding money to try to implement his political agenda."

Mother Jones ranks Farmer and wife Joyce No. 15 among the nation's biggest contributors, with $721,000 donated in the past election cycle, all to Republicans.

Other local bigwigs — also favoring Republicans — include real estate developer William O. Brisben (No. 149, $287,200), fruit wholesaler Robert Castellini (No. 283, $199,000) and two of George W. Bush's business backers, William O. DeWitt Jr. (No. 247, $216,550) and Mercer Reynolds (No. 318, $180,673).

You can find the entire list of 400 donors at www.motherjones.com.

All Together Now!
After working through fractious internal bickering — with Scott Seidewitz and progressive cohorts still feeling left out in the cold — local Democrats are poised to name their officially endorsed Cincinnati City Council slate. The announcement could come this weekend.

Shoo-ins are the incumbents: Charlie Luken for king of the world — er, mayor — and Paul Booth, Minette Cooper, John Cranley and Alicia Reece for council. Leading contenders for the remaining council endorsements are David Pepper, David Crowley, Melanie Bates, Jane Anderson, Darius Bobo and Laketa Cole.

Left out could be Seidewitz, a strong contender in the 1999 race, and Marilyn Hyland, who seems to get votes every time she runs but who's never been a favorite of party leaders. Both could end up running for council under the Charter Committee.

In a rare moment of discord, Cincinnati City Councilman Pat DeWine publicly disagreed with fellow Republican Phil Heimlich last week. DeWine — who, since winning a council seat in 1999, has generally been a Robin to Heimlich's Batman — said during a March 5 public hearing that racial profiling is more than just a problem of perception. Heimlich said he believes the issue is really just about the conflicting points of view of whites and minorities.

Remember those noisy protesters who marched through the streets shouting political slogans and generally irritating the ruling class last November? They haven't gone away. Citizens for a Humane Economy is gearing up for a series of "actions" next month, scheduled to coincide with demonstrations in Quebec against globalization of the economy.

Sometimes canceling a civil-rights program is the best way to promote civil rights. That was the conclusion of the International Socialist Organization, which canceled its Feb. 22 meeting on the theme "The New Civil Rights Movement." The socialists bowed out in deference to the African American Cultural Research Center at the University of Cincinnati, which had scheduled a meeting entitled "Civil Rights in the United States" for the same evening.



Porkopolis TIP LINES: 513-665-4700 (ext. 23) or [email protected]

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