Never Mind The Facts

A new entry into The Forum says 'yes' to Brookhaven cityhood.

When campaigns have little substance, they resort to tactics, get loud, spend money, distort the facts and play on the voters fears.

The “No City” campaign is LOUD, spending lots of MONEY (think billboards), DISTORTING FACTS and using FEAR to advance their agenda. 

“No City” is banking on Brookhaven residents being fear driven and they are using these no substance tactics: 

  1. FEAR - Scare people so much that they’ll be afraid to vote “YES.” 
  2. LOUD MONEY - Repeat the same scary messages loud and often. 
  3. DISTORT FACTS – In the absence of substance, take the facts and turn them upside down.

These are age old tactics that work. So, why not? “No City” has no facts!   

Jim Eyre uses these tactics expertly. With dramatic flair, he captioned his last commentary in the Brookhaven Reporter with the heart stopping headline, “New city brings higher taxes.” Some folks who read that were “shaking in their boots.” Kudos to Jim for playing the FEAR card so well!

And never mind the fact that Mr. Eyre cannot point to a single example that backs up this statement ... not one! The people who live in Dunwoody, Johns Creek and Sandy Springs pay the lowest property taxes of anyone in Dekalb and Fulton counties. And their city tax rate has not increased since inception!   

Fear is a powerful emotion that controls and drives much of our behavior. Fear keeps us from pursuing a new career path, a bigger dream, starting our own business, or even pursuing a new love interest. Advertisers leverage FEAR to get us to buy everything from expensive face creams that will halt the aging process, to diet sodas that will keep us from getting fat. Never mind the fact that the face crèmes never do what they promise and never mind the fact that it’s been proven that diet sodas actually contribute to weight gain. 

There is a direct correlation between fear and irrational behavior. Since we’re afraid of looking old and gaining weight, as soon as a savvy marketer awakens those fears, we respond with a knee jerk reaction, instead of making an informed decision based on factual evidence.

“No City“ wants us to be afraid and to have a knee jerk reaction every time LOUD MONEY says “higher taxes” and “another layer of government.”

“No City” wants you to feel FEAR and “never mind the facts.”

“No City” wants you to be afraid that your taxes will go up if Brookhaven becomes a city.

  • Never mind the fact that taxes have NOT gone up in the nearby cities of Dunwoody, Johns Creek, Sandy Springs and Milton.  Just never mind that.
  • And never mind that Brookhaven will have a property tax cap that is lower than Dekalb County’s current tax rate.
  • Also, never mind the fact that when HOST sales tax revenues increase, the city is required by state law to further reduce your property tax rate.

“No City” wants you to be afraid that Brookhaven doesn’t have the commercial tax base to support a city:

  • Never mind the fact that Brookhaven’s commercial tax base at 27% is larger than that of unincorporated Dekalb County's 21% commercial base. So, if Brookhaven is not viable because its commercial base is 27%, DeKalb County would therefore also not be viable with a 21% commercial base – according to the “No City” logic. But really, never mind that.

No City” wants you to be afraid that you’ll receive less police protection and fewer services:

  • Never mind the fact that each city that has incorporated has more police officers and patrols on the streets than they were receiving from the county police force.
  • Never mind the fact that the vast majority of residents in Sandy Springs, Dunwoody, Milton and Johns Creek claim they receive much better services and that they would never rewind the clock and go back to being unincorporated. Just ask them!

No City” is using LOUD MONEY and DISTORTED FACTS to try to make you believe that the majority of people in Brookhaven are against a new city.

  • Never mind the fact that the No City campaign raised $70,000 in campaign donations, and $50,000 of that money came from only TWO people! Is anyone curious about who they are and what their agenda is?   You should be. Nothing drives me crazier than when a small handful of people with deep pockets achieve their personal agendas through buying an election. 

I urge Brookhaven residents to not fall prey to fear which has been expertly executed by the No City Camp, and paid for by two individuals. Their attempt to unabashedly manipulate our emotions is an insult to all of us.

If you are afraid of higher taxes, talk to the people in the surrounding cities and ask them if their taxes have increased. Then ask about the quality of the services they are receiving.

If another layer of government is what scares you . . . again, talk to residents of those cities and find out if becoming a city has been a good thing or a bad thing.  Just don’t let campaign phrases like “another layer of government”, drive you into a knee jerk reaction. 

If the people you speak with echo what the No City camp wants you to believe – then vote NO.  

If the people you speak with feel they are better off now than they were before – then put your fears to rest and give Brookhaven the opportunity to blossom into a great city.  A city with a beautiful library, more green space, improved parks, better roads, more police protection and quality urban planning. 

I’ve spoken to well over 40 people from the surrounding cities, attended many of the town hall meetings, read everything both sides have to say about the new city – and I’m voting YES for Brookhaven.    

Kathy Forbes

Dr. Jeff July 30, 2012 at 01:20 AM
That's exactly right old man Eddie! So, when are you going to practice what you direct others to do... "PUT UP OR SHUT UP" Wonder if that's close to a similar phrase that you say at the PP?!
Dr. Jeff July 30, 2012 at 01:25 AM
Oh goodness Eddie... I can see you're feeling quite edgy... You brought up your biz! And since you have... reviews reviews reviews...
Danielle DiMaio July 30, 2012 at 02:29 PM
No one can really claim any facts. The fact is that there are no facts because a city doesn't exist. Until a city exists only forecasts, estimations and opinions ( which unfortunately people try to claim as fact) are available for residents to draw their best conclusion on what will make for a better life in our community. Fearing a failed incorporation, a broke city, higher taxes, etc...are valid fears and are not to be taken lightly. I suppose what it boils down to are how courageous the residents are feeling tomorrow at the polls. Because that fact is that the city could work. It could also fail...are we ready to take that leap of faith?
City Yes July 30, 2012 at 02:40 PM
Danielle - Well said. I would ask the following questions - Couldn't the county fail too? Is it somehow immune from financial issues? These are scare tactics intented to keep the status quo as is and bypass the real issue. Yes, change is scary, but can also be for the better.
HDM July 30, 2012 at 03:25 PM
Ms. DiMaio, what we DO have is the experience of Sandy Springs an Dunwoody before us, both thriving cities with strong balance sheets that are much better off since incorporation. We aren't the first ones to do this, people. It works because the County is irresponsible fiscally, simple efficiency increases likely with the new city will benefit us greatly. What we CAN claim as fact is that DeKalb County is a poor servicer of the city services, as evidenced by the 26% tax hike forced upon us in 2011.
Danielle DiMaio July 30, 2012 at 03:49 PM
All your fighting is gross. It is sad that people like this run the county and could run a city. And BOTH sides are acting like fools to get their opinions across.
Danielle DiMaio July 30, 2012 at 03:53 PM
Rightly said regarding Dekalb. And yes others have walked this path, some are thriving and others have failed.
HamBurger July 30, 2012 at 10:54 PM
Latest polling information, based on feedback from our volunteer field network is: 57.65% NO with the remainder YES or UNDECIDED. Respondents concerns with the new city in no specific order are as follows: - New city concept sold hard with confusing facts. - Out of date and incomplete data being used to promote cityhood. - Distrust of the new city promoter motives (MJ) and manner in which the cityhood concept was developed in neighborhoods around Silver Lake and north. - Lack of commercial property in new city. - Concerned petty politics will continue in new city with the select few BY folks running new city. - Distrust of Brookhaven Yes key supporters, their election to city offices, and manipulating city government for their benefit. - Do not want another layer of government. Had rather work to change existing government. - Bothered that CVI Study was not linked to HB 636 for cityhood guidance and development. - Feel cityhood issue should have required more time for development. Some respondents were very strong in stating their distrust of cityhood promoters and the short timeframe for issue vote. Many were not impressed with the last minute shenanigans of the Brookhaven Yes folks. The WSB-TV piece with J. Max Davis showed how little he knows about the southern portion of the city. Anyone have a link to that video? Special hamburger and Cheerwine?
HDM July 30, 2012 at 11:00 PM
There you are, burgerboy. This place just wouldn't be the same without your constant misinformation and attempts to scare the community. Voters will not be fooled.
HamBurger July 31, 2012 at 12:33 AM
What was your take-a-way from that two minute J. Max Davis spot on WSB? He appears to be a man obsessed with a sign . . . Go watch the video, how trite for someone wanting to create a new city! https://www.onlinefilefolder.com/2s55xD25VvTtU6 J. Max Davis is a man living in a fine neighborhood with their own swim club on a beautiful private lake. Really, it is a very nice area and it is not some place where you pay your 50¢ and you swim. Paying the going rate for membership in his club I seriously doubt he would ever visit one of DeKalb County’s parks with a pool. Yet, he did today for this WSB-TV news piece. And, he is clueless as to what is going on with Briarwood Park. He has absolutely no idea what those folks in Drew Valley and Brookhaven Fields are in the initial stages of planning for this park and clearly has no clue as to any of the recent renovations in the park performed by DeKalb County. Really, is this all he had? Brookhaven Yes’s J. Max Davis, a potential candidate for mayor, has absolutely no clue what is going on in Briarwood Park. He wants a new city? Please . . . Quick! Give me a Cheerwine and a special hamburger with extra yellow mustard!
HDM July 31, 2012 at 12:34 AM
Once again the NOCity Dekalb Democrats are trying to sway the good citizens of Brookhaven with their hatred filled personal attacks, this time against Mr. Davis. Voters will see through this shameless attempt to get them to vote against their best interest (Brookhaven cityhood).
Jack of Kings July 31, 2012 at 12:52 AM
Mailbox Stuffer received by many today from a "Eugenie Viener, An Ashford Neighbor" is a desperate attempt to sway votes with an out of context quote by Dunwoody Mayor Mike Davis. Under the Heading-- "Annexation scare tactics not true!"-- the mailer has a quote that says: "...We really are not interested in your neighborhoods." -Dunwoody Mayor Mike Davis, Brookhaven Reporter, July 19. The full quote with context was: "Mike Davis pointed out that Chamblee had annexed areas recently and said that high-value commercial property, such as Perimeter Summit, could draw interest from his city. The money is in the commercial areas … ” Mike Davis said. “That’s a winner for us. Do we want your neighborhoods? We’ll talk, but we really not interested in your neighborhoods.” Would anyone consider this blatantly misleading? BTW, Ms. Eugenie Viener is the daughter of Ms. Laurenthia Mesh of the Ashford Neighbor.org group that opposes the city. Link in full quote: http://www.reporternewspapers.net/2012/07/19/davis-on-brookhaven-city-vote-this-is-our-one-shot/
Booyah July 31, 2012 at 12:52 AM
I think the NOCity folks were distancing themselves from Laurenthia and the kids (Eugenie & Soren). Let's see Mesh Corners and Post properties, yeah sort of similar.
Jack of Kings July 31, 2012 at 12:59 AM
I think you may be right, A Resident. AshfordNeighbors.org has been very quiet. I have not seen "Professor" post for a long time since everyone knew it was Ms. Mesh. But maybe she was disappointed in finding out that her supposed allies, NOCITY Brookhaven, were duplicitous and were lying to the public about working with the County to defeat the new city. Maybe Ms. Mesh knew that was not kosher and they had a falling out. If so, I commend her ethics.
HDM July 31, 2012 at 01:35 AM
Ms. Mesh carpetbombed our neighborhood with untruthful fliers this morning.
Non Sequitur July 31, 2012 at 02:18 AM
I hate to throw a wrench into things at the 11th hour, but do you realize that once the City of Brookhaven becomes a reality, at Christmas, will will have the opportunity to decorate the 'downtown' area streets in our own unique way? This could attract thousands, if not millions, of people to our city and generate hundreds, if not thousands, in additional tax revenues. Plus, I think it might be very pretty. Perhaps the NO bunch should reconsider and stop putting out signs and any other last minute efforts. You could be making a mistake that would haunt every Christmas in our community's future.
Jack of Kings July 31, 2012 at 02:22 AM
Dunwoody’s code compliance: A before and after success story By Rebecca Chase Williams For The Crier When the city of Dunwoody first took over code compliance from DeKalb County, officials didn’t quite know what to expect, other than they knew that they had some problem apartment complexes that could potentially tax city resources. In June 2010, the city launched a program to inspect all 51 multi-family complexes in the city limits, using a nationally recognized code and licensed inspectors. What they found shocked them. In just two years, in 22 complexes, inspectors documented more than 12,000 violations: exposed electrical wires, water lines to the sprinkler system turned off, sewers leaking into basements and nearby creeks, trash overflowing, broken gutters and windows, illegal businesses, slimy pools, no usable handrails, no emergency lighting. “There was no evidence that any of these apartments had been inspected since they were built,” said Mayor Mike Davis. Dunwoody’s code compliance official, Tom La Penna, said at first, inspection teams were met with fear and suspicion, with a few apartment owners even accusing Dunwoody of “being out of control.” But La Penna said after they saw that the inspection teams work with the maintenance staff, provide a detailed report, complete with data and pictures, and then meet with apartment management to map out a plan of action, attitudes changed.
Non Sequitur July 31, 2012 at 02:51 AM
I was born and raised in the small town of Pissant, MT. As devout Christians, we took great pride in the only time of the year that we could take pride in . . . Christmas! Regardless of the daily, nasty arguments that occurred around the wood stove of Herb's Hardware (mostly about Ms.Bleakly's questionable parade of 'lady friends' staying at her compound), we always came together as a community at Christmas. Pissant was known throughout the northern third of the county as having the best Christmas lights around and we would have out-of-towners driving up and down our streets until the wee hours of the night. Even until 9pm sometimes. Although the police would usually lock any visitors up who were still 'cruisin'' after 7pm, at Christmas they would be more forgiving. Mayor Turner was a very smart man and knew that in order to bring in the extra taxes (Christmas week of 1977, we collected $350+ in additional tax revenue; a record that still stands today), we had to 'make allowances', as he put it. Think carefully! I would hate to see Brookhaven stay the rural sh*t hole that it is today. This is our time to step it up. I know that it will take many years, maybe even decades, to achieve the standards of Pissant, but we must start now! Vote YES!
Non Sequitur July 31, 2012 at 03:41 AM
My wife just reminded me of a reality that has stopped me in my religious tracks! When we moved to the Brookhaven area 19 years ago, we came here to escape the oppression of The United Church of Christ! Though the UCC was not the dominate faith in Montana, in Pissant, fully 93% of the population practiced that misguided 'religion.' After reading Dianetics by L. Ron Hubbard, we went to the library and discovered that of the major metropolitan cities in the US, Atlanta had a substantial population of Scientologists . . . centered in the Brookhaven community. They numbered around a dozen, but were growing at the rate of about .8% per year. The opportunity to be in the middle of such a flourishing community of enlightenment was enough to make us sell our 14,000 acre emu ranch, disown our 9 children, and re-establish roots here. To make a long story short, 6 months after moving here, we happened to meet Kai, a wonderful neighbor with the best hooch I ever smoked. He introduced us to a reality of the Brookhaven community that we might (tragically) have missed. Brookhaven, as it turned out, was known throughout the south as having the most progressive Pagan collective in the free world! We quickly became enamored with their simple beliefs, and the realization that Gaia had lovingly guided us to our salvation made us happier than we could ever have dreamed! What a haven! A Brook-Haven!
Bill Richards July 31, 2012 at 03:50 AM
Dunwoody is not Brookhaven
Jack of Kings July 31, 2012 at 03:57 AM
Brookhaven will be Brookhaven tomorrow.
Non Sequitur July 31, 2012 at 04:03 AM
So, I shamefacedly stand down from my call for city Christmas decorations, the likes of which haven't been seen in Atlanta. Instead, I propose we celebrate with the first annual Brookhaven Winter Solstice Drum Circle. My garage is filled with several hundred Djembes at various stages of completion, but with encouragement (and the creation of the Grand Township of Brookhaven), I could have them completed by the middle of December and would be happy to loan them to anyone willing to 'beat' the city into the future! We could attract hundreds from Little Five Points . . . and even Banks county! Not to be crass, but there is a lot of money those folks like to throw around and I think we should be grabbing all we can. Vote YES! Vote YES!
Joe July 31, 2012 at 04:05 AM
Time for a late night phone call, Mr. Sellers: http://www.georgia-capitol.com/#!will-sellers-bio WAKEY-BAKEY
IWillBrookNoBrookhaven July 31, 2012 at 04:06 AM
Brookhaven is already Brookhaven, numb nuts.
Joe July 31, 2012 at 04:06 AM
Dr. Jeff July 31, 2012 at 04:25 AM
Danielle... Add yourself to your fool's list with your comment.
Joe July 31, 2012 at 04:32 AM
DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — A candidate running for Dekalb CEO said he received backlash for late-night political campaign calls that he did not authorize. "These calls did not come from our campaign," said Jerome Edmondson. Edmondson, a Democratic candidate who is running against incumbent CEO Burrell Ellis, said he believes someone re-recorded an endorsement message he sent out to voters last week, attached it to another number and then sent automated calls to homes late Saturday night and early Sunday. Several recipients of the robocalls left angry messages on the candidate's answering machine. "Don't ever robocall me at 1 a.m. again. You'll never get my vote," said the caller. Edmondson said he returned calls and messages from about a dozen people who received the call and explained that he was not responsible. "If someone called me that late at night, I would be absolutely furious. We were able to talk with all of them and regain their trust, all of them," said Edmondson. The candidate accused Ellis’ re-election campaign of being behind the late-night calls. The manager of the Ellis campaign told Channel 2's Tom Regan the accusation was false and that Ellis was running on his record of creating jobs, restoring neighborhoods and promoting schools. "Any accusation that our campaign would send or authorize recorded calls endorsing an opponent is not only false but ridiculous," said campaign manager Will Sellers. CEO Campaign Manager Will Sellers....
Dr. Jeff July 31, 2012 at 04:34 AM
Which one has failed? The only one the NO camp mentions having any issues (supposedly) is Peachtree Corners... And they've not failed since they just started. Again, the NO CITY propaganda tries to paint the picture as such, but it's not accurate.
Joe July 31, 2012 at 04:34 AM
What do you want, at these prices????
Dr. Jeff July 31, 2012 at 04:36 AM
So glad you've cast your vote for yes brokehead will...


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