Bartlett Jr launches fundraising luncheons with a Dallas mailer

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Tulsa Mayor Dewey Bartlett Jr has sent out a mailing inviting the recipient to contribute at least $250 for a series of luncheons hosted by himself and (it is implied) by Senator Jim Inhofe, the former Mayor of Tulsa.

A source provided me with a copy of the contents of the mailing: a cover letter, a glossy four-color, eight-page booklet summarizing Bartlett Jr's accomplishments and policy goals, and a contribution response card. Click the link to see a PDF of the mailing's contents. (My source scanned the contents of the mailing but did so with the text oriented in all directions because of the way the booklet was laid out -- in a couple of cases, opposite orientations on the same page. I extracted the scanned images in the PDF to separate files, cropped and rotated the images so they all have the same orientation, and reassembled the result into a PDF. I then used Acrobat's built-in optical character recognition to scan for text. If you want to compare, here is the original scan I received, a 2.4 MB PDF.)

Here is the text of the letter:

"A SHINING CITY UPON A HILL... ...." MAYOR DEWEY BARTLETT'S LUNCHEON SERIES May 20, 2011

April 10, 2011

Dear Friend,

Over two thousand years ago, Jesus described a "city upon a hill" in his Sermon on the Mount. President-elect John Kennedy returned the phrase to prominence when he described "a city upon a hill-the eyes of all people are upon us". In our most recent recollection of the phrase, it was Ronald Reagan who often cited, "a shining city upon a hill ..... ", as he led our imaginations and delivered us the results of a country that could be restored ..... if we would fix our eyes on such a city!

These words have special significance to me as the mayor of your city. For too long, we allowed our past achievements to dictate our current and future endeavors. We would study, plan, study some more....and rarely act! We did not allow the forces of the marketplace to create the value to the taxpayer and the quality that Tulsan's had historically come to expect. I have spent all of my adult life in the private sector, where your ideas must quickly be moved to action ..and where your past performance is no guarantee of future results. Accordingly, when I entered office as your mayor, I met with a culture and skepticism that can only come from people that have lived in a static society, protected from market forces and continual improvement. With all of the noise in and around City Hall, I decided to take another idea from our hero, Ronald Reagan. He always went directly to the people, and did not allow his vision and results to be left to the interpretation of others....many of whom wished to preserve the status quo and poor results that come from unchallenged governmental performance.

So, I am coming to you, along with my mentor and dear friend, Senator Jim Inhofe, to hold a series of luncheons to share directly with you the many exciting results we are achieving in the use of successful and proven ideas in municipal performance. Senator Inhofe was the last mayor that truly used the Ronald Reagan approach to government, and he was often touted by Reagan as his "favorite" mayor! I have included with this invitation my list of focused action results that are implementing our shared vision of what it takes to return Tulsa to its former position.....one that we haven't seen since Mayor Inhofe was in this office. As you will see here in this publication "Tulsa 2020-Many Voices-One Vision" we are not studying, vacillating and massaging.....we are acting! And those actions have already led to national recognition for our applied solutions to our municipal challenges. Finally, we are leading again, and other cities are follOWing our lead....a true return to Tulsa's greatest days!

I hope you will join Senator Inhofe and me for this most important luncheon. All of this is being paid for privately, absolutely nothing is at taxpayer expense. It would be particularly helpful to me and my efforts if you would consider being a Sponsor ($1,000 per couple), Host ($500 per Couple) or Patron ($250 per Couple). I have included in this mailing the information you will need to provide for participation. We would like to mail general invitations later this month, so it is important that I can hear from you quickly, as we would like to show you on our broader invitation. We will only be able to seat 200 for our first event, so I encourage your prompt attention to this important and timely luncheon with Senator Inhofe and myself.

Should you wish for more information, simply contact Laura Huff at (918) 691-1744, or by email at Laura.Huff@cox.net

Warmest Regards,
Dewey Bartlett
Not Printed At Taxpayer's Expense

The letter was mailed from Dallas, Texas. The zip code on the prepaid return envelope, 75234, is in the Dallas area, and the bulk mail permit for the mailing is from Dallas as well.

The return address on the envelope, and the address on the response card, is

Bartlett for Mayor 11806 S. Pittsburg Ave Tulsa, OK 74137

a residence in the Wind River Subdivision belonging, according to county land records, to the aforementioned Laura Huff and her husband Dustin. (The couple are mentioned in news stories from 2003 as involved in the performance review developed at the beginning of Bill LaFortune's term of office, an effort led by Mrs. Huff's father, former City Auditor Ron Howell.)

I don't have time for a detailed analysis, but here are a few quick reactions to the letter:

The big question: What does he plan to do with all the money he is trying to raise? It's two years -- two long years -- before Bartlett is up for re-election.

I wonder what Bartlett Jr's mentor, Sen. Inhofe, thought of Bartlett Jr's endorsement of Democratic incumbent Mayor Kathy Taylor for re-election (before she dropped out). Taylor's refusal to face fiscal facts put Tulsa in a deep financial hole. Bartlett Jr seemed quite content with the way the city had been run by his predecessors until he actually got into office. Bartlett Jr endorsed and praised Taylor's decision to make City of Tulsa property owners pay for the failure of Great Plains Airlines, despite promises that the taxpayers would not be at risk.

During the 2009 mayoral primary campaign, I asked the candidates whether they would continue following the autocratic leadership style of Kathy Taylor. Sure enough, Bartlett Jr has followed closely in the footsteps of the predecessor he endorsed, building an even worse relationship with the City Council than she had done.

(By the way, in responding to that question back in 2009, Bartlett Jr denounced Chris Medlock's idea of hiring an experienced City Manager to work for the mayor and oversee city departments involved in day-to-day operations. In 2011, Bartlett Jr has named former Broken Arrow City Manager Jim Twombly to do just that.)

Ronald Reagan, whom Bartlett Jr claims as a hero, not only didn't endorse his predecessors, he ran against two sitting presidents, one of whom was a fellow Republican, because he believed that the policies of the Ford and Carter administrations were leading the country to financial and geopolitical disaster.

I see some good ideas in the booklet that came with the mailer, but it's hard for me to trust Bartlett Jr's sincerity. I have to wonder why he hadn't been promoting these ideas prior to his election.

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1 Comments

Bob said:

Dewey, Jr.'s most amazing accomplishment:

He's managed to UNITE the Tulsa City Council against Dewey.

Republican and Democrat.
Black and White.
Men and Woman.
Young and Old.

All united against Dewey.

Absolutely amazing....

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on April 30, 2011 1:12 AM.

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