Memo to St. Lukes: stop the whining and threats
Commentary by PAT MURPHY
Ed Dahlberg didnt leave a very inspiring impression for himself or
the St. Lukes medical system with his whining and threats.
Dahlberg lost it when the Blaine County planning and zoning commission
rejected St. Lukes proposal for a 40,000-square-foot medical office building
adjacent to the new St. Lukes Wood River Medical Center.
DahlbergCEO of Boise-based St. Lukes(a) whined that the
hospital cant survive financially without an office complex; and (b) threatened that
St. Lukes might just leave the Wood River Valley.
My recollection is that when St. Lukes first challenged the Wood
River Valley to help raise funds for the new hospital, no mention was made of a medical
office building being crucial to St. Lukes coming to the valley or staying.
Residents were challenged to raise $12 million as their sharewhich
they did, and then some by several million dollars.
If this fuss over the office building is an 11th hour Dahlberg
afterthought, then it reveals poor financial planning during original projections for the
But if its one of those executive suite ploys to treat citizens like
boobs, and shove through a late-hour project, then its not only unbecoming for a
serious institution, but also not welcome in a community that worked earnestly to provide
millions for the St. Lukes operation.
Even more worrisome is whether Dahlberg is apt to create other financial
"crises" out of thin air down the road to get his way.
Idahos two senior naysayers in Washington, Sens. Larry Craig and
Mike Crapo, came down on the side of another losing vote last week when they opposed a
"hate crimes" bill.
As passed, the law gives the feds authority to prosecute, if states
dont, crimes committed because of a persons religion, sexual orientation and
Craig and Crapo argued that murder is murder whomever is the victim, so
why draw a special "hate" law?
That seems like a smokescreen. Surely Craig and Crapo know that criminal
codes are filled with laws that draw distinctions in the severity and motives in crimes,
and provide differing levels of penalties. Criminal laws have always drawn distinctions on
degrees of guilt, such as who pulled the trigger and who drove the getaway car.
My hunch is Craig and Crapo voted against "hate crimes"
legislation because they didnt want to acknowledge that gay Americans are humans.
My nomination for the years most irritating TV commercialas
well as outrageously exaggeratedis American Express new series with faceless
women blubbering hysterically into telephones that their wallets or purses have been
Most women I know dont blubber and dont get hysterical, but
calmly approach such catastrophes with calm and organized thinking.
Pat Murphy is the retired publisher of the Arizona
Republic and a former radio commentator.