But Bates can't always keep his story straight. Consider the conspiracy he predicted just last week. A Batesline headline promised duplicity from Tulsa's leaders:
Double-secret Council meeting about moving City Hall
OK, maybe he's right. Except Bates contradicts himself in the very first sentence of his report: "Actually, it isn't secret. It has been officially posted…."
So which is it?
Based on Bates own reporting, the meeting wasn't secret, much less "double-secret," a term he apparently borrowed from National Lampoon's frat boy comedy Animal House.
The best Bates can do is to pick on the timing of the meeting, Saturday morning at 8:30, a time that he says, quite correctly, "would be unlikely to draw spectators."
Yet Bates is unable to resist another conspiratorial dig, writing that "part or possibly most of the meeting will be conducted behind closed doors in executive session."
Only one problem: it wasn't, as Bates—to his credit—acknowledged in an update to his original posting:
I was there this morning, and they spent three hours in open session covering a wide range of issues. I was proud of the job the City Council did this morning.
Having predicted secrecy and failed to find it, Bates has to backtrack (again).
Let's give him credit for honesty. But wouldn't it be more efficient and less paranoid to credit city leaders with some small amount of good will and stop assuming evil intentions whenever their ideas depart from his own?