- Eye on Media
A member of the governance advisory committee and proponent of the county hiring an administrator has lashed out in a letter to The World newspaper today. Lance Benton targets Robert Loiselle for his earlier letter questioning the conclusions of the PSU report and accuses Loiselle of being a “shill” for Commissioner Bob Main. Benton also cites the structure and governance advisory committees’ conclusions while failing to mention he was a member of the latter.
Interestingly, Coos Bay Mayor Crystal Shoji questions a state study predicting a decrease in local population, (a phenomenon noted in The JOB Messiahs), because the methodology used to reach the conclusions are not, in her opinion, clear. Neither advisory committee explained its methodology and for this reason amongst many others both final reports are highly suspect in part because too many unexplained assumptions are used as validation for the results.
Benton’s own letter demonstrates a wild unproven assumption combined with flawed reasoning demonstrated in an earlier letter by another advisory committee member, Jon Barton. Benton writes that “nearly 60% of the voters last election voted for change in county government” which mimics Barton’s earlier claim of “17,000 of 29,000 voters voted for a change”. Both are making an mistake by summing the total “yes” votes for a county charter, Measure 6-143 and an administrator, Measure 6-144 and assuming votes equal individuals.
Measure 6-143 received 6,356 “Yes” votes while Measure 6-144 received 10,663 for a total of 17,019 votes. Dividing the total votes cast in the election 28,485 into the sum of yes votes in both measures does indeed approach 60% but there is no validation that some voters didn’t vote yes in both measures. Benton and Barton ignore other factors like the significant under votes in both races or that 6-143 lost by 74.32% and 6-144 by 58.16%. Averaging the two races against the total votes cast in the November election reflects only a third of the county, 33.76% voted for a change in governance.
Benton and Barton’s reasoning is flawed and illogical and based upon faulty assumptions even in this matter. Why then should anyone take them seriously on more serious issues? As for Loiselle being a shill, well no one fits the definition, “Slang a confidence trickster’s assistant, esp a person who poses as an ordinary customer, gambler, etc., in order to entice others to participate”, better than Lance Benton.