Jul 9, 2009


About a decade ago, I interviewed then Agriculture Commissioner Charles Bishop (prior to his fame as a prizefighting State Senator) about the HUGE typeface used for the Agriculture Commissioner's name on the inspection stickers required on every gas pump in the state. "Why," I asked, "was the NAME SO BIG?" As I recall, his answer was to make sure people knew who to call if they felt they were cheated by a service station. So make the PHONE NUMBER big, I suggested, and the elected Commissioner's name small.
I was reminded of it because now the current Commissioner, Ron Sparks, is running for Governor. And he has those taxpayer paid-for name-recognition stickers all across the state. Anyone want to make this an issue for the candidates in the Ag Commissioner's race? Ask them if they will promise to reverse the sizes if they win? Small potatoes, I know, but the little things start to count when they add up.


David said...

During the time Big Jim Folsom was out of office after his first term, he had a battery company make car and truck batteries withe "Big Jim" label on them that he sold all over the state. He also sold horse feed and dog food with the same label.

Jay Croft said...

A related issue is writing checks to the Judge of Probate Court, by name.

Why would I write a check to Reese McKinney? Does the check go into his personal account? Not to imply anything with Mr. McKinney; I just find it strange writing a check to a person rather than to a government agency such as "Department of Motor Vehicles."

Kevin L. said...

I concur with Jay's remarks.

And, when I've written checks to the License Director (well, I've not written a check in perhaps 15+ years - paper or plastic, you know...) I've purposely written to "License Director" of _whatever_ county.

While I don't think the issue you present, Tim, is an issue of legality, it certainly raises a question of "Cult of Personality," and could be construed as an ethics issue - though it may violate no law.

And, on a broader scope, does it speak to an issue of the necessity of revamping our state constitution?

Jay Croft said...

Of course, the all-time champion of plastering one's name all over the state was George Wallace and his kin. Bridges, schools, whatever. You're never far from a structure named for him.