Brad Messer Commentary
8:15 a.m. Monday, Dec. 9, 2002

When I began writing this commentary last night, it was going to be another slam at the Union Pacific railroad. UP seems coldly determined to make a train wreck of our bid for a Toyota assembly plant.

First I intended to do some quick research on Marion, Arkansas, reportedly our only serious rival. Marion is part of the Memphis, Tennessee metropolitan area.

In population, our metro is twice the size. During the last decade, they grew only 6 percent while we grew 22 percent.

You'd think we could kneecap ’em in this competition, easy.

But after two hours of internet research, just about everything they have on the web looks better than us. I remembered that phrase we briefly used in a tourism campaign: Puro San Antonio. Hearing it for the first time, one guy thought they were saying “poor old San Antonio.”

I have put a comparison chart, a map and several links at the bottom of this commentary. You can access it at Brad messer dot com. See how the hicks up there present themselves, compared to us world class city slickers down here.

Poor old San Antonio. Our salesmanship deficiencies go tremendously deeper than our shrinking violet of a mayor. Or even the backstabbing Union Pacific railroad, which has taken our zillions of dollars in freight business, and now tells us to get lost. More details soon, same time, same great station.

Brad Messer— commentary, KTSA.


Where is Marion? Memphis metro map

METRO AREA
Per capita
income
Media
Colleges
Universities
Population
1991-2000
(World Almanac)
Population
Employed
San Antonio
25,741
9 TV 41 radio
18
+22.3%
1,144,646
517,065
Memphis
29,275
7 TV 32 radio
17
+6.5%
650,100
303,256

“The Memphis Region” PR website See how our competition presents itself.

San Antonio Economic Development Foundation
For your amusement, try the part of the SAEDF website that brags about “firms located in San Antonio assisted by SAEDF”. It is here. For “type of firm” be generous and choose “Select All” and then further select the year 2000. How many firms do you find? Exactly as many as will be found by any major business which is located elsewhere and is researching San Antonio as a potential headquarters.

And here is the link to a related San Antonio site, which you will judge for yourself. Unfortunately it conforms to the low standard of the City of San Antonio website and is in PDF rather than HTML— so be prepared to wait for 48 pages of PDF to download before you see the first page. You will be waiting the same length of time as any major business which is located elsewhere and is researching San Antonio as a potential headquarters. City Report: The San Antonio Economic Development Plan

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