Farewell to a true democrat, autocrats in love

Farewell to a true democrat

As you might have guessed from last week’s issue (see “Something about Mary,” SN&R Green Days, November 5), activist Mary Brill was a big influence on this reporter. She would talk my ear off, but her knowledge and her no-bullshit attitude were a real blessing for me when I was trying to figure out how things work in this town, and how to be a reporter.

Well, since we published last week, plans have been confirmed for Mary’s memorial service. Her friends and fans and family will be gathering on Saturday, November 21, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Clunie Auditorium, 601 Alhambra Boulevard. That’s right in McKinley Park.

Organizers will be accepting donations for the Mary Brill Helping Hands Account, a scholarship fund that is being set up in her name. (Or checks for the fund can be mailed to Lynne Cannady, 2015 J Street, Suite 205, Sacramento, CA 95811.)

Brill was a big advocate for volunteering, and local nonprofit organizations will be represented at the service for anyone who wants to get involved.

—Snog, www.newsreview.com/snog

Autocrats in love

So that’s what all those trips to Washington, D.C., were about. The Washington Post’s Reliable Source column reported that Mayor Kevin Johnson is engaged to be married to D.C. schools chancellor and former St. Hope board member Michelle Rhee:

“Rhee, who is divorced with two kids, has had a tumultuous couple of months, at odds with D.C. Council members and teachers over her budget cuts and firing of nearly 400 staffers. The never-married Johnson, meanwhile, is still in the first year as mayor and dealing with the drip-drip-drip of one of those annoying municipal scandals (a city employee who allegedly handed out illegal permits to developers).”

Aw, they sound perfect for each other. Like a young, combative, autocratic power couple, with heavy emphasis on the power. In fact, this is an interesting partnership on a lot of levels. For example, remember when K.J. brought in that firm Alvarez & Marsal to do a “cost neutral” audit of the city finances? Turned out that Alvarez was the same firm that sweetheart Rhee brought in to help her shake out the D.C. schools. In D.C., the (strong) mayor is directly involved in the schools, here Johnson wants the mayor to be strong and directly involved in the schools. It’s OK, Kevin, lots of us leave the thinking to our wives.

—Snog, www.newsreview.com/snog