Like most things in my life, I’m a little late. My first post was June 24, 2007.

While I have made very little money over these 15 years from the blog I have pushed change and open government. I have worked on many city campaigns. I have won and I have lost many battles.

Historical perspective is a good thing, and when I find myself engaged in conversation about city government the cobwebs of my mind remember the past and how this city has managed many of those things very well and has also failed. It is of no consequence.

I wish 3 things in the new year from our city leaders;

• Open and transparent government

• Hold the line on tax and fee increases and be fiscally responsible

• Make our community more safe and free to live in

“The more the people are discontented with the oppression of taxes, the greater the need the prince has of money to distribute among his partisans and pay the troops that are to suppress all resistance and enable him to plunder at pleasure.” Benjamin Franklin

It’s been fun, and I am not going anywhere.

Sorry, I have been away from the blog a few days, I took a long weekend vacation in San Diego. I have been to a lot of places in California, but thought this would be fun, recommend to anyone, stayed on the beach right in the middle of Pacific Beach and logged many miles on a bicycle riding the broadway and Coronado Island.

Politically, masking was lax. The only time someone told me to pull up my mask is while I was looking at a Dali in the San Diego Museum of Art, otherwise most places only require it when you walk in. As many Californians told us, ‘We are so f’ing over it!’

If you are fully vaccinated, get out, enjoy our beautiful country!

Trust me, it is NOT with heavy heart that I will stop posting here. The blog will remain as is but the comments will be shut off and there will be no more posts moving forward.

Over the past couple of months I have had many POSITIVE things happen to me, and the Blog is no longer a part of that and it time to cut the strings. While I enjoyed it, I did speculate shutting it down for at least 2 years, it just took me awhile. It’s just not fun anymore and really not part of my life anymore. I got stuff to do and it doesn’t involve city politics.

It also has nothing to do with Stehly leaving the council. I think we will see her come back into the political spotlight after a short break and I expect her to be an even stronger citizen advocate – one of the reasons I did not want her to run for re-election, she gets more done when her hands are NOT tied down by haters.

I guess the real reason I am quitting is because I don’t think I am making a dent in stopping or even slowing city government corruption. The elected officials over the past 6 years have become more corrupt, more unethical, hypocritical and quite honestly a lot dumber, unprepared, sophomoric and naïve. Just look at the response to Covid. It has virtually been ignore the problem and it may go away. Or 5G which has virtually done NOTHING to improve the lives of the citizenry. Dumb people lie and cheat because they have no problem solving skills, and they don’t want to solve social ills, they want to line their pockets. We need to stop electing these idiots. They represent one class of people, and it isn’t you and me.

There is also another glaring problem in our little town, a Fourth Estate that is non-existent. We have a daily paper where we can count the number of employees on one hand ran by a person who is more concerned about Fernson’s latest beer than what is going on in our community politically. And our local TV stations seem to be more concerned about food trucks, car dealerships and golf tournaments put on by the hospital industrial complex. The sad part is, the best news source in town comes from a two person operation that gets paid for content. How ironic is that? What makes it even more funny is this person was the target of one of my first posts on this blog. How the times have changed. Keep rocking it Jodi!

Trust me though, just because I won’t be commenting on city politics anymore does NOT mean I won’t be paying attention, I just encourage others to get more involved. The voters have chosen these fools, and now they can live with the results. It is just unfortunate that I also have to. But there is very little tying me down to this town. I could pack up my crap in a couple of days and be gone. The main reason I stay is because it is quiet, when I want it to be quiet.

No matter what I say or do it won’t make much of difference. The hatred and disgust towards towards openness, transparency and simple honesty is the cancer that is eating away at our local government. And it’s not just the council and mayor, it’s city directors, public employees (mostly management), school board members, county commissions (both of them) and yes the citizens who support these people. You are your own worst enemies. Stop making everything a partisan issue. Good government is good for all of us!

It’s just best I don’t say anything, anymore. It’s better for my mental health. I just want to sit in front of a canvas and listen to old time roots country and watch BBC art docs.

There will be something I will miss about it, all the colorful comments and hundreds of friends I have made over the 13 years. Some of these friendships have been life changing. One of my fondest memories is how I changed my relationship with Greg Jamison, who I once revered as an enemy but became a local government confidant, heck even his father warmed up to me a bit. Or my relationship with Dr. Kermit Staggers, a person who always put integrity above everything else and swatted away the detractors like gnats. Or the bond I formed with former city clerk Debra Owen who has always been forthright with me about her positions and has stood by those positions while listening to my side. Her kindness, depth of knowledge and understanding has often gotten me through some rough patches on the blog. Heck, I even got Sioux Falls School Board President Cynthia Mickelson to listen to some of my suggestions over the past few months after she reached out to me with an open hand and open mind. There are a few good people in local government, but there needs to be more of them.

I want to give one last thank you to two people. One I will name, one I will not. Cameraman Bruce has been vital to this fight. My links to his YouTube page transformed how I covered local politics and his fight has always been my fight. While he never had access to my blog, ownership or editorial control, his contributions have been insurmountable. While I have had several guest posts over the years, I have always been the soul writer and editor of the blog. There is also someone else, a person I would never mention by name, but they stood behind me the whole way and sacrificed a lot over the past 13 years (actually over 20). They know who they are, and I will be eternally grateful, because without them, there would have never been SouthDaCola. I will never be able to repay you for the countless hours you have put in consulting me along the way, you are good friend, remember that. Now go saw some logs!

Detroit Lewis – Signing off!

Okay, this is just in jest. But I pitched this idea to some of my friends. We have bacon, beer, BBQ and chislic festivals, why not CABBAGE?! I consider myself a cabbage lover, as someone of German, Irish, French, Russian, Swiss and Czech decent, cabbage runs through my blood. And it is delicious. I have even joked that SD Chamber President, David Owens should be the honorary chair (he hates cabbage).

Just think of all the different dishes you could serve! Coleslaw, and lots of it! Soups, pigs in a blanket, the list goes on and on! Let’s do it!