Political Vine: The Insider's Source on Georgia Politics

Political Vine: The Insider's Source on Georgia Politics

The Political Vine is the home of political news, satire, rants, and rumors.

Why Does Georgia Remain At The TOP For Corruption?

Bill Simon, February 9th, 2016

Is Three Times Going To Magically Be The Charm for Georgia Opponents of Free Speech?

Now we know why kids today tend to be rather disobedient of laws and established rules of an orderly society: Because Georgia’s state legislators continue to demonstrate how utterly clueless they are on the simple concepts of Free Speech (as protected by the US Constitution and subsequent SCOTUS decisions), and clueless on what our Georgia Constitution means when it says in Article I, Section I, Paragraph X that “No bill of attainder, ex post facto law, retroactive law, or laws impairing the obligation of contract or making irrevocable grant of special privileges or immunities shall be passed.”

History Lesson 101: On May 17, 2011, Governor Deal vetoes SB 163, dealing with Campaign Communications, in which the Legislature attempted to make it a requirement that anyone engaging in any kind of political free speech had to disclose who paid for the communications if they spent over $500, along with some other requirements.

History Lesson 201: In the 2015 Legislative Session, clueless legislators again write a bill numbered SB-127 attempting to regulate political free speech, as well as violate the Ga Constitution on passing a retroactive law that cancels-out previous fines and violations of state ethics laws…and that bill goes thru a few more gyrations until it died last year in a Senate conference committee on Sine Die.

Present Day Lesson: State Reps Barry Fleming, David Wilkerson, Virgil Fludd, Terry England, Alan Powell, and Jay Powell are sponsoring HB-370, a re-formulated SB-127 that has two simple sections: Section 1 that attempts to regulate political free speech (that was vetoed back in 2011 by Governor Deal), as well as violate SCOTUS decisions like the 1994 Decision on McIntyre v Ohio Elections Commission, and Section 2 that seeks to retroactively allow for political officials who, between the dates of January 1, 2010 and January 10, 2014, were accused of violating state ethics laws on campaign disclosures, as well as paid the fines in cases they agreed to pay fines, to write a letter to the state ethics commission and have their records purged, AS WELL AS have their money that they paid for fines refunded back to them at their request.

In short, HB-370 can alternatively be called the “Governor Deal Ethics’ Record Nullification and Ethics’ Fine Refund Act”. This law, if passed, would also apply to any other elected official who was remiss in following state ethics laws, and paying fines between the dates of 1/1/2010 and 1/10/2014. But, this section was clearly written to benefit only Nathan Deal to nullify his ethics issues and ethics fines he’s paid.

AND…would you like to know how I know this Section 2 is related directly to Governor Deal, and only Governor Deal? Because on Line 96 of this year’s HB-370, the following is written: “(g) This Code section shall be repealed by operation of law on January 31, 2019.”

Now, why would Section 2 expire then? Because Deal will have completed his term thru some date in January 2018 (the day his predecessor gets sworn-in), and January 31, 2019 is an end-date for when campaign disclosures thru December 31st of the previous year are due.

HB-370 is scheduled for a hearing in the Senate Ethics Committee in Room CLOB 307 on Tuesday, February 9 at 1:00PM. Will there be a majority of state senators who are stupid and crooked enough to pass this bill out of committee…a bill that specifically violates free speech decisions, as well as the Georgia Constitution that prohibits retroactive/ex-post facto laws?

We’ll know within approximately 21 hours…

P.S. That McIntyre v Ohio Elections Commission SCOTUS decision has a fascinating feature on this website (if you go to the page and click the links in the lower-left portion of the page); it has the audio of the 7-2 majority’s decision, as well as audios of the concurring decisions by Clarence Thomas and Justice Ginsberg.

BUT…maybe UGA-educated Georgia legislators like Barry Fleming, Alan Powell, et al. are so much smarter about the case law than SCOTUS is. If so, it sure is a mystery why, in the 200 some-odd history of the UGA law school, that no UGA law school graduate has ever been nominated to sit on SCOTUSvery, very, very puzzling, indeed. Note: No, I am not saying Alan Powell is a lawyer…Barry Fleming is, though, as is David Ralston. Both are UGA-“educated” (sic) lawyers.

P.S.S. Hey, here’s a helluva idea, Barry Fleming! Will you write a law that allows people who have been given a speeding ticket and paid a fine, and/or been given a DUI ticket and paid a fine and had points assessed against their insurance record, between these same dates of 1/1/2010 and 1/10/2014, be given the chance to write a letter to the particular jurisdiction to request their record be wiped-out, and refund their fine money?

I’m sure Alan Powell will go for this as your co-sponsor, Barry…you know, he cannot write any bill on his own…I’m not even sure he can read…but I know he can talk a good bullsh*t game as he gets his talking points straight from the Governor’s Office….will someone in the State House please read this issue of Political Vine to Alan Powell?

A Jewish Boycott? Go For It!

PV, December 17th, 2015

[This article is not originally written by the PoliticalVine.com…but, if you find errors, let us know!]

Iran’s Supreme Leader Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei urged the Muslim World to boycott anything and everything that originates with the Jewish people.

In response, a Jewish pharmacist, out of the kindness of his heart, offered to assist them in their boycott as follows:

“Any Muslim who has Syphilis must not be cured by Salvarsan discovered by a Jew, Dr. Ehrlich. He should not even try to find out whether he has Syphilis, because the Wasserman Test is the discovery of a Jew. If a Muslim suspects that he has Gonorrhea, he must not seek diagnosis, because he will be using the method of a Jew named Neissner.

“A Muslim who has heart disease must not use Digitalis, a discovery by a Jew, Ludwig Traube.

Should he suffer with a toothache, he must not use Novocaine, a discovery of the Jews, Widal and Weil.

If a Muslim has Diabetes, he must not use Insulin, the result of research by Minkowsky, a Jew. If one has a headache, he must shun Pyramidon and Antypyrin, due to the Jews, Spiro and Ellege.

Muslims with convulsions must put up with them because it was a Jew, Oscar Leibreich, who proposed the use of Chloral Hydrate.

Arabs must do likewise with their psychic ailments because Freud, father of psychoanalysis, was a Jew.

Should a Muslim child get Diphtheria, he must refrain from the Schick” reaction which was invented by the Jew, Bella Schick.

“Muslims should be ready to die in great numbers and must not permit treatment of ear and brain damage, work of Jewish Nobel Prize winner, Robert Baram.

They should continue to die or remain crippled by Infantile Paralysis because the discoverer of the anti-polio vaccine is a Jew, Jonas Salk.

“Muslims must refuse to use Streptomycin and continue to die of Tuberculosis because a Jew, Zalman Waxman, invented the wonder drug against this killing disease.

Muslim doctors must discard all discoveries and improvements by dermatologist Judas Sehn Benedict, or the lung specialist, Frawnkel, and of many other world renowned Jewish scientists and medical experts.

“In short, good and loyal Muslims properly and fittingly should remain afflicted with Syphilis, Gonorrhea, Heart Disease, Headaches, Typhus, Diabetes, Mental Disorders, Polio Convulsions and Tuberculosis and be proud to obey the Islamic boycott.”
Read the rest of this entry »

Georgia GOP: Half-Assed Leadership Leads to Complete Crap

Bill Simon, December 10th, 2015

Have you SEEN the email today from Ga GOP Foundation Chair Jack Kingston? Here is a copy.

Note that Jack lists as his first bulleted accomplishment that “We’ve grown from 8 members to 78 members [emphasis added], which includes more than 30 who have given far more than the requested amount.”

Kudos to Jack Kingston for being able to con money out of poor saps to give money to the Ga GOP in order to keep paying for political consultants to piss money away.*

The Foundation likely had 500+ members when Sue Everhart left in May 2013. And, as of 4 months ago (before Kingston took over), it had been reduced to 8 members. Eight individual members.

Well, kudos, also, to the absolutely WORTHLESS job Chairman John Padgett (and his crew) have done in proactively managing the state party. What an incompetent POS of a chairman to not raise any money, and to drive down membership to 8…Foundation…members before recruiting Jack Kingston to help save his complete and utter failure of “leadership” of the State GOP.

* And what stellar political consulting there is for the State GOP. Here’s an example: This is a snapshot of the Ga GOP Website. (you could also go to GAGOP.org, but I’m concerned Stoneridge would switch it out pretty fast to cover-up their “clever design”). Notice how warm and fuzzy it is with “Choose Freedom” (that allows Padgett the freedom to screw you contributors out of your donation money to pay Stoneridge close to $100,000 for a Website design) and other dull stuff to promote Georgia elected leaders.

THEN..in comparison, go look at the Florida GOP Website (http://www.florida.gop/). Notice what they are focused on? Defeating Hillary. I’ll bet you they are generating lots of good cash donations by focusing on THAT issue, rather than the fluffy crappola that the experts at Stoneridge think is important for the Georgia GOP.

Also…notice the Florida.GOP website domain. They are promoting the GOP….they are marketers. How long has the top-level domain “.GOP” been available? About a year-and-a-half, according to this WSJ article.

How much would it have cost the Georgia GOP to get that subdomain? $39 bucks a year? How much cooler and sleeker would the Ga GOP Website be if they built a site on Georgia.GOP and forwarded the GaGOP.org site to it (so no one would have to spend a lot of money reprinting stuff with the new website name on it)?

I refer to those 70 folks who agreed to donate money at Jack Kingston’s asking “poor saps,”…NOT because they are “poor” but because they are saps. They have been conned into contributing money that will just be a pass-through to pay for half-assed leadership, half-assed party management, half-assed party-building efforts…vendor kickbacks to the GA GOP personnel…half-assed Website consulting (expensive as hell, but not even worth 5.0% of the cost John Padgett agrees to hand over to a firm that, frankly, appears to be focused on mediocre Web 2.0 work product, but charging Cadillac prices.)

BUT…yeahhhh…Alex Johnson was so unqualified...while John Padgett had 8 members at the Foundation after 26 months of his “leadership.”

If I could only remember the names of those 4-5 people who signed a letter stating that Alex Johnson was, essentially, unqualified, while John Padgett was SO MUCH MORE qualified….I just…can’t recall who those people were….mental block here…it’ll come to me soon, I’m sure…

Statement from Donald Trump’s Georgia Co-Chair State Senator Michael Williams

PV, December 9th, 2015

Statement from Donald Trump’s Georgia Co-Chair, State Senator Michael Williams on Trump’s Temporary Moratorium of Muslim Immigration

December 8, 2015 – “Donald Trump’s call for a temporary moratorium of Muslim immigration into the U.S. has caused an international stir within the media. Many of the reports paint a false narrative and ignore the problem this proposal attempts to remedy.

“Trump’s call for a temporary ban is due to serious security concerns. The recent acts of radical Islamic terrorism in Paris and now San Bernardino California make it obvious something must be done to protect our homeland from growing threats.

“Until a solution is found, a temporary ban would diminish the chance that radicalized Muslims who wish us harm enter our country. In the past week, it was revealed that Homeland Security failed to conduct a proper background check on the murderous female terrorist behind the San Bernardino attack. False entries on her application went unnoticed by government screeners. Our government is clearly unable to properly screen immigrants from these nations. This is not a call to end all future Muslim immigration. This is a call for strict immigration enforcement during a time of war to protect the people of America.

“Pew Research revealed that 7% of U.S. Muslims believe that suicide bombings are “sometimes” justified. That is nearly one out of ten adult Muslims in the United States. The study also reports that only 28% of Pakistani Muslims disapproved of ISIS. How can we possibly screen immigrants from a nation where the vast majority support terrorist groups? In Nigeria, 20% of Muslims stated that they were in-favor of ISIS. These numbers should be frightening to anyone. We cannot put our nation at further risk to appease the politically correct.

“Those who claim this unconstitutional overlook an important factor. Who does the U.S. Constitution protect? Last I checked, these rights were reserved for citizens of the United States, not foreign nations.”

###

MEDIA CONTACT
M. Seth Weathers
(678) 687-8189

sethw@weatherscorp.com

Refugee Resettlement: Time To Sue The Feds

Bill Simon, November 17th, 2015

PRELUDE

At noon yesterday (Monday, November 16), State Senate District 40 Candidate Paul Maner emailed a letter (as well as mailed via the USPS a letter) to Governor Deal, expressing his concern on the resettlement of, not only Syrian refugees, but any other in the refugee resettlement process taking place in Georgia.

Coincidentally, sometime on Monday afternoon, Georgia Governor Nathan Deal issued an Executive Order instructing all Georgia agencies to halt the processing of resettling any Syrian refugees until such time that Congress approved of the process that the Obama Administration was planning on employing to process 100,000 of them over the next two years.

It was either a coincidence of conservative minds thinking alike, or perhaps Mr. Maner’s letter did give the Governor the impetus to get on the stick to issue that EO about preventing potential Syrian terrorists from landing on Georgia soil under the auspice of being “refugees.”

Whatever the case, you can be sure of this: The people of Senate District 40 would NEVER see anything of the sort come out of the mouth of sitting State Senator Fran Millar. According to Millar, there is nothing neither he, the Legislature, nor the Georgia Governor can do except vote to keep accepting federal dollars that contribute, perhaps, only about 50% of the true dollar amount it costs to resettle refugees for the 8 months the federal law stipulates, and then they all become a burden on state, city, and county dollars.

Frankly, the mindset of idiots like Fran Millar (and others, like Senator Renee Unterman, et al., whose very livelihood is based on income derived from her employer as a result of those refugee resettlement programs) is what is costing Georgia a lot of forward progress. Long-time incumbents who would rather sit on their ass and just vote along with the rest of the liberals in our legislature, rather than consider what is best for Georgians, are a real big hindrance to excelling in anything but remaining near the bottom in education, as well as still sucking in ethics (don’t go celebrating the big ‘promotion’ to 24th in the nation because the facts make a difference in the actual results).

A CASE FOR SUING THE FEDS OVER REFUGEE RESETTLEMENT

Just like the concept of a government taking private property without due compensation to the owner under the auspice of “eminent domain,” when it comes to the federal agencies forcing local governments to absorb demands on their infrastructure via the importation of a bunch of refugees from other countries, more money should be paid by the federal government to the states and local communities who have to take the load on the existing infrastructure.

According to this article on ThinkProgress.com, the various states MUST accept the refugees, no arguments allowed. Within this article, they point out the 1997 Scotus decision on the Brady Bill as “evidence” that the feds can direct and force state personnel to carryout laws Congress passed.

A state’s LEO (“law enforcement organization/officers”) personnel carrying-out another legal process to verify a background on a potential gun-owner is hardly the same activity as…sayyy…a population of X-number of people getting 2-10 times the net population gain they would normally get over a year, get it all in within a few months or so.

However…in any population of “X” size, there are certain fixed resources that cannot all of a sudden deploy and expand to handle the influx of a bunch of people all at once (without creating backlogs). The National Fire Protection Association has guidelines on how many fire trucks and locations of fire stations there should be for every X-number of population. You dump 1000 more people in an area within 3 months where you expected a growth of maybe 500 over a year…and all of a sudden, everyone’s property and life is in jeopardy because there isn’t enough pubic safety resources in place to handle the sudden influx of new people, and subsequent demand on resources (yes, I know…I knowstupid liberals like Fran Millar and Renee Unterman think local taxpayer resources are infinite and the laws of supply and demand don’t need to be considered in government decisions).

I would imagine that there are similar guidelines for regular LEOs as well. If the City of Brookhaven has 52,000 people, and a police department of whatever size it is currently, if more people move into the area faster than the natural growth of the city (“natural growth” being net of new people moving in who are not refugees from another country, minus people moving out, minus people dying, plus people being born), then that unnatural growth puts a sudden strain on the law enforcement demands, judicial courts, and on the public safety of all concerned.

Not just public safety, but also other resources (water, roads, sewer, cellphone towers, etc.) cannot all of a sudden be ramped-up to accommodate more folks in the blink of an eye. Safety factors only work for a little while…you keep adding to the load and whatever safety factor was designed into the system to last 20 years becomes obliterated when you place more load on the system, earlier than anticipated. Things have a tendency to collapse when too high of a load gets put on them, whether it be people or government infrastructure.

The county of DeKalb is in the same boat because as refugees come to either Clarkston (as Maner’s letter describes) or wherever in DeKalb, that county has to also increase its government investment in LE, fire safety, government workers, etc….that money to accomplish all that DOES NOT come from the federal government to be reimbursed to handle the load of new people on existing resources.

Also, the burden of these new people will have a costly impact on the state’s resources as well…and, again, that money comes out of our pocket, not the federal government’s pockets. All the feds pay for is the living expenses for 8 months of the refugees, and some other services like English-language training and other “caretaking” services the Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Atlanta contracts with the Georgia Department of Human Services to offer the refugees. The money from the feds does not pay for the increased demand on the governments’ infrastructure systems.

Higher demand can lead to more breakdowns and higher cost of repairs than originally budgeted. Why should we be required to pay for the increase in supply that the new demand from Congress/the White House is forcing upon us?

It would seem to me that if something is costing us money that we (as a state or local community) are not being reimbursed for as a result of the acts of the feds directing us to take-on a financial burden, then that cost could be the basis for suing the federal government in district court. Kinda like…a federal-to-state eminent domain issue. The feds are demanding that we forfeit the capital resource lifespan of, say, a water and sewer system that was not designed and built to handle the load of people it is suddenly required to handle. A parallel case could be made for every other government-funded infrastructure resource that is required to take on an additional load it was not designed to handle at the time the demand comes on-line.

Of course, y’all could just act like a bump on a log like Fran Millar does…and just…sit and rotate in place while going through the motions of “representing” the people of your districts. The first time a terrorist attack happens in Georgia, you folks in Georgia government will rightly get the blame for choosing to do nothing…to not even try to adequately argue against the importation of people who won’t even be accepted by the countries far richer that are in their immediate area?

Oh, the Freaking Irony!

Bill Simon, November 5th, 2015

There were two news stories I saw yesterday that struck me with such a flash of WTF, that my brain would not let me go to sleep tonight until I got this (very short) Vine out of my system.

Story One: This story in the Fulton County Daily Report about people like Zell Miller and a slew of others writing a federal judge to ask for leniency on the sentencing of former Georgia State Representative Tyrone Brooks. To refresh your collective memories, Brooks “…pleaded no contest to fraud charges stemming from allegations that he misappropriated thousands of dollars in corporate charitable funds over two decades.”

Story Two: From the AJC, (PDF link here), this fascinating exposure about our esteemed (sic) Georgia Legislature passing laws that enact certain fees for this, that or the other cause, and all those fees are NOT going into any kind of “designated funds purpose” for which the original law was written.

In the primary example in the AJC article, the father of the kid whose death was the reason for Joshua’s Law being written and passed, remarks that the Georgia General Assembly is “…breaking every law in the book” for NOT using those funds that Joshua’s Law was enacted to collect ON the driver education training courses that were supposed to be offered in Georgia high schools.

So, let me sum this up as cogently as possible: Every single time the Georgia Legislature votes to pass their budget, where the legislators KNOW they are collecting fees for any number of causes enacted by their very own laws, but they knowingly divert those funds for other projects/uses/brass mules….they, like Tyrone Brooks, misappropriated funds collected for one purpose, but used for a completely different purpose.

The only difference is, of course, that the Georgia Legislature is free to continue committing fraud on the Georgia voters, while Tyrone Brooks, unfortunately, has to face a federal judge for sentencing this week.

While I cannot pen a letter quick enough to get to the chambers of U.S. District Judge Amy Totenberg, I would fully support and encourage the judge to sentence Tyrone Brooks to serve absolutely no prison time at all for his supposed misdeeds…because we have grand larceny, theft, and fraud being committed by far more people, involving far more money in our own Georgia State Legislature than former State Rep. Tyrone Brooks engaged in doing.

Any of you who are either State Reps or State Senators, and you continue to vote for these budgets that divert these funds, know this: You would be committing fraud if you did this in your private life, and you would be lying to people in your private life (“private life” being non-legislative related life) if you engaged in this as well.

As it is, you’re only lying to the voters and your constituents every single time you cast a vote on a budget that diverts these monies (whether it is Joshua’s Law, or the tire scrap fees, or whatever) to some other use besides what the money was stipulated to be collected for.

So…if you’re proud to continue being a known liar, not a problem. Any of you vote on the budget this next session, and 100% of these fees are not being diverted to the O.C.G.A. stipulated purposes, you will be known as a liar and you are someone who willingly participates in a fraud…that anyone else would face jail time for.

Cobb County: Where corruption thrives!

Bill Simon, October 20th, 2015

Prelude

By the time you get finished reading this, and absorbing the degree and depth of just how corrupt every level of government in Georgia is, here are some questions you might ponder in addition to the ones I posit:

1) For the corporate members who pay who-knows-what in annual membership to the Council for Quality Growth (“CQG”), do those dues make it all worth it that either members of your organization, or employees of your organization, may potentially be involved in either an actual criminal act and/or be part of the cover-up of a criminal matter in connection with promoting the Cobb County Braves stadium?

2) For the Braves’ organization set to come to Cobb County, does it please you that some of the very people you now hob-nob with know, exactly, who is behind, the people who committed the criminal act, and you’re okay with this?

3) In helping to bring “economic development” to Cobb County, are oaths of office to uphold the law superseded by this desire to bring “economic development deals” to a county?

4) If James Touchton did not engage in what Cobb County Resident/Fire Victim Susan McCoy has explicitly stated in her emails to Cobb County government personnel and commissioners (and, CCed to a variety of people), then one should expect a rather public, and clearly delineated, rebuttal by Touchton (please make sure the Political Vine email address is CCed if such a statement is issued).

Because, as you can see in the previously linked PDF of her email(s) to, first to Cobb County Manager David Hankerson yesterday (10-19-2015), and then Hankerson again this morning, Susan McCoy CCed every single Cobb county commissioner (thus making these emails and their contents instantly in the public domain when it is sent to a public official’s government email address), DA Vic Reynolds, and AG Sam Olens. (Thus the reason why I am publishing all this to you folks.)

As such, since Susan McCoy has explicitly stated in the 10-19-2015 email to Hankerson that: “James Touchton poured the gas in my yard after the groundbreaking for the reversible lanes and my video surveillance cameras showed a truck driving by my front yard 8 minutes after the fire was lit and they did not hit the breaks or call 911. It took me 2 minutes and 54 seconds to drive from Precinct 4 to my home so any vehicle that was here 8 minutes after my yard was lit on fire and came in two hours prior, was connected to the entire SEC complaint.”, one has to wonder that if such a statement was categorically false, wouldn’t Mr. Touchton immediately seek to neutralize the effects of such a statement? After all, it’s one’s professional reputation on the line.

5) When a state such as Georgia has as much intricately-connected corruption that covers-up criminal acts, this does not just appear at the local county level, but is directly connected to the AG’s office as also participating in the corruption and cover-up. At what point does it take the Ga Legislature to get off its effing asses and seek to remedy these issues? And don’t freaking whine to me about “But, Bill, what I am s’posed to do? I just take whatever pile of sh*t the Chamber or the Speaker or the Lt. Governor or the Governor gives me and I am allowed to only play with that pile, and not ask questions. Also, I’m really too much of a coward, but don’t tell anyone that because I like my freebies and the fact that all these lobbyists love me completely!!!”

Dot-Connecting Guideline

So that I can be very streamlined in the story, I’m going to give you all the dots and all the connections I know about that are necessary to begin to understand the deeply embedded levels of corruption in this state and Cobb County:

Susan McCoy: Cobb County attorney who challenged the Braves deal by attending a Cobb County Commissioners meeting and presenting to the Commission her viewpoint that the Securities and Exchange Commission may have a problem with the bond issuance by the county to finance their part of the new Braves Stadium.

One week or so after this presentation to the county commission, Susan’s picket fence had gasoline poured on it in the wee hours of the morning and it was lit-up. Little did the perpetrators of this act know that McCoy’s house had had cameras installed on it prior to the fire where some evidence was recorded, along with time stamps of the different events.

James Touchton: Director of Policy and Government Affairs for Council for Quality Growth (“CQG”)

Michael Paris: President & CEO of CQG and someone who just happens to reside in a home 7 houses down the street from Susan McCoy.

Tim(my) Lee: Cobb County Commission Chairman, who cares very little about telling the truth in any circumstance.

Vic Reynolds: District Attorney of Cobb County who, apparently, is unaware of what OCG 16-7-23(a)(2) declares to be against Georgia law, and whose office “investigators” are just too befuddled to bother performing the legal research required to identify the explicit criminal statute that was violated by someone in connection to this fire.

Sam Olens: Attorney General of Georgia and former Cobb County Commission Chairman and former Cobb County Commissioner, whose protege is Tim Lee. Olens may be best known for his unabashed ability to engage in lying publicly, engaging in deliberate violations of the Georgia RICO Act, not just this time, but this time as well as it relates to the corrupt Georgia Board of Regents in the Anthony Tricoli matter.

And then there is the infamous $20,000 fine levied by Fulton County Superior Court Judge Ural Glanville (that the taxpayers paid for his withholding of evidence in a civil lawsuit against the State of Georgia) against Sam Olens and his office for their deliberate cover-up of the existence of a memo that, had it been seen in court by the jury, would have a) resulted in a much higher award to Stacey Kalberman, as well as b) likely exposed the Governor and his henchmen to a criminal investigation had the memo been made public. (Which, of course, explains why Sam Olens repeatedly violate his oath of office…because he believes it is his duty under the Constitution of Georgia to keep evidence hidden in criminal and civil matters that would expose his clients to criminal investigations. His “clients” being every state level constitutionally-elected executive, as well as every state-level board, commission, or agency. Getting the picture now as to >why Georgia is the most corrupt state in the USA?)

Also, he is an AG who seeks to demonstrate how utterly incompetent he and his office is when it comes to carrying out a favor for a politician who worships the very ground that Sam Olens walks on (i.e., Senator Josh McKoon) in spending AG resources and taxpayer dollars bringing an 18-count criminal indictment forward against a state senator who got acquitted of all 18 counts in one fell swoop.

Yes, that is the Sam Olens everyone should be familiar with. Instead, too many effing people think Olens hung the moon and deserved the award he recently received from the Ga First Amendment Foundation for his (choke!) “Open Government” activities.

As an aside, giving a guy like Sam Olens this type of award is like giving Barack Obama a Nobel Peace Prize. That is, it becomes meaningless when something like that is done. (Kudos to GFAF ED Hollie Manheimer for demonstrating how low to go to devalue the work once performed in earnest by Charles Weltner.)

Though I digress when it comes to Sam Olens, the very fact that he is allowed to engage in the frequency of corrupt acts (not just incompetent, but deliberate corruption and violations of state law) is the very reason why corruption at the lower levels of Georgia government is encouraged to happen: Who will have the power or authority if the AG doesn’t give a damn? AG Sam Olens is the most corrupt elected official in this state, and he is responsible for the culture of corruption wherever it occurs in this state, at whatever level it happens.

Mike Plant: Atlanta Braves EVP and “man on the ground in Cobb” for the Braves.

Heath Garrett, Mitch Hunter, et al., associated with the 2013 campaign to get the county commission to approve of the Braves deal. I haven’t had a chance to ask Susan McCoy why Heath Garrett was included in her email as a CC, BUT I will propose one or all of these possible reasons:

a) It was one of Heath Garrett’s companies that Mitch Hunter worked for at the time of the push for the Braves (his companies have changed names multiple times over the years, so I’m not sure what the entity name was back in 2013), so Heath might have inside knowledge of who may have either set the fire, conspired to set the fire, or found out about it afterward the fire, and has not told anyone about it (just a possibility), and

b) Heath Garrett is the husband of Lee Garrett, editor of the Marietta Daily Journal, a publication that pretty much exists to ensure that cover-ups of such activity like torching someone’s property can occur at-will in Cobb County, and

c) Heath just happens to be the mastermind consultant behind getting DA Vic Reynolds elected in 2012…which points to a potential why as to Reynolds’ office may not having the stomach to actually engage in an investigation. Because the people who hired Garrett’s company to promote the Braves’ deal are some of the same people who financially-backed Reynolds in his election to be DA…and who are people who don’t likely give a damn about someone being traumatized by having their property damaged for publicly objecting to the Braves financing deal, and

d) Heath also just happens to be the consultant who helped Sam Olens get elected in 2010…which loops back to why Sam Olens doesn’t care about acts of a criminal nature in his very own county. Because the people that support Cobb County’s taxpayers’ footing the bill for the Braves’ stadium are the same people who hired Heath Garrett’s company to run the campaign in support of the Braves, who also financially support Sam Olens. (Thus looping me back to my point about the award the GFAF gave Olens for “courage” or some other such bullsh*t in enforcing Georgia’s Open Records laws…this man is the biggest and most corrupt coward in this state. But, that’s none of our business, is it? As long as the Braves move to Cobb and the county taxpayers are robbed of their money, who cares about a little illicit criminal activity like setting someone’s yard on fire?)

e) Not that this fact is related to Susan McCoy’s issue, but Heath also happens to sit as an appointed member of the State Ethics Commission, getting to decide who has broken state ethics laws and who has not. Why do we have an ethics commission that allows a political consultant to sit on it? Because we have FUBAR for a state legislature. (And, if you cannot figure out why that is a bad idea on your own, then you likely graduated from UGA.)

f) Also, Heath Garrett is also a lobbyist for Cobb County Government as per this MDJ article:

“Published May 28, 2014 04:00 AM

“MARIETTA — In a push by Chairman Tim Lee to ensure the county is ahead of the state’s legislative agenda, county commissioners have agreed to hire a local lobbying firm for a $168,000 annual contract.

“In a 4-1 vote Tuesday night, with Commissioner Bob Ott against, the Board of Commissioners hired Marietta-based Garrett McNatt Hennessey & Carpenter 360 as part of a budget item from the general fund for consulting services.”
…..

“Garrett McNatt Hennessey & Carpenter 360 is led by Marietta attorney Heath Garrett, former chief of staff to U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson. (Full disclosure: Garrett’s wife, Lee Garrett, is general manager of the Marietta Daily Journal.)”

Source: http://mdjonline.com/view/full_story/25188255/article-Marietta-lobbying-firm-hired-by-Cobb

John Loud of Loud Security & Superior Plumbing owner Jay Cunningham: Two prominent Cobb County business owners who “spearheaded” the effort by the business community to get the Commission to approve of the Braves deal.

State Rep. Earl Ehrhart: The man identified to be THE man to bring the Braves deal to Cobb County and happily push the county commission to pursue the taking of Cobb County taxpayers’ money without them being able to have a say in that process. (Hey, Earl? Don’t ever try to claim yourself to be a “conservative” again. Because I’ll call you a liar to your face if you do.)

Critical Events

September 9, 2014: Susan McCoy addresses the Cobb County Commission to inform them that she has filed a complaint with the SEC over the Braves’ stadium funding.

September 18, 2014: In the wee hours of a Thursday morning, someone poured gasoline all along McCoy’s picket fence in her front yard and lit it on fire.

The cameras on Susan McCoy’s house could not pick-up the identity of exactly who set the fire at the time of the fire, but there were several clues demonstrated in the video segments as to who could have been involved.

Prior to this event, I am pretty sure Susan McCoy had absolutely no idea of who James Touchton was. She knew who Michael Paris was because they live in the same neighborhood, but I doubt that Susan personally knew who James Touchton was.

So, when you read in her two emails to Hankerson where she states (she does not “allege” it, but she states it as though it is a fact) that James Touchton is responsible for ‘pouring the gasoline” on her fence and lighting it on fire, the reason why she is using his name is because some of the Cobb-way insiders told her that Touchton was responsible.

No arrests have been made in connection with the act. Not much investigation effort has been made by Cobb County criminal investigators to find out who set the fire. And, the County’s lack of effort and investigation quality has led Susan to issuing these types of emails that inform a) the potential culprit(s), b) the potential conspirators behind the culprit(s), and c) people like me to communicate to people like you that something is vastly amiss in Cobb County government.

Now, whether Susan McCoy’s sources are correct or not, the BIG question is, IF James Touchton….and Michael Paris (Touchton works directly for Paris)….and any entities associated with the Council for Quality Growth did not have anything to do with the fire, then we should expect to see/hear about Susan McCoy receiving a lawsuit accusing her of libel, RIGHT?

Whether a lawsuit is filed against McCoy or not, I have to ask these questions:

Is it worth it to the members of the Council for Quality Growth to potentially have someone involved in your organization who believes in vandalizing property owned by political opponents? Of course, for all we know, the CQG may be entirely its own little “Cosa Nostra” where they DO engage in bribery, extortion, arson, etc. to achieve their political goals. Maybe there’s a special CQG Henchman School where everyone learns how to pour gasoline and light it on fire without catching yourself on fire. Dunno, I’m not a member.(Michael, is there a secret handshake for CQG? Or, maybe you folks just brand each other in a ritual ceremony of some sort at some nuclear electrical plant in the boonies, eh?)

I would ask Tim Lee a question, but he’s too frickin’ crooked and stupid to give a straight, honest answer.

To Mike Plant: Is it worth the Braves deal to know that someone torched someone else’s property in retaliation for daring to oppose the funding method? Are you so excited about the Braves coming to Cobb County that you not only don’t care that someone you might actually know who planned/engaged in the torching of someone’s property? But, for all I know, perhaps you yourself might, given the opportunity, engage in a similar activity as well for the thrill of it. Just wondering, you know, hypothetically speaking…

To Business Owners John Loud and Jay Cunningham: Does it trouble either of you to know that someone’s property got destroyed because they exercised their right to free speech to oppose the funding of the Braves’ stadium? Just, you know, wondering…

To Mitch Hunter: How about you, Mitch? What do you think of Susan McCoy’s accusation that James Touchton is responsible for torching her picket fence? You and James run in the same insider-circles, and you were paid to push the Braves to the Commission, so what is your unabashed opinion on this matter? Is it okay to destroy your political opponent’s property when you engage with them on a government matter?

To Heath Garrett: Heath, same question to you that I asked Mitch. Is it okay for someone to engage in acts of property destruction of people who oppose an issue before a government entity like the Cobb County Commission?

ALSO, Heath…is it okay for a “news publication” (sic) like the Marietta Daily Journal to also…kinda be involved in the cover-up of a criminal act? Even though the MDJ was all for the Braves coming to Cobb County and forcing taxpayers to foot the bill…is that “okay” to also provide cover for the perps and/or the people who may have been involved in a conspiracy to plan and execute such an event?

Just a few of the many questions I ponder the answer(s) to…

Why Fran Millar Should Resign Immediately

PV, October 6th, 2015

Paul Maner Press Release

For Immediate Release

Revelations in Recent DeKalb Corruption Report Prompt call for State Senator Fran Millar’s Resignation

“The corruption report by former Georgia Attorney General Michael Bowers clearly demonstrates DeKalb County’s government is “Rotten to the Core.” The report, prepared by Bowers and his investigating partner, Richard Hyde, reveal a government best characterized as a kleptocracy, where spending and stealing, both legal and illegal, is out of control.” stated Paul Maner candidate for the State Senate seat held by Fran Millar.

“The report states the thievery has been going on for years, unchecked by any oversight, State or Federal. The abuse of Purchasing Cards (P-Cards) is rampant with purchases for Karaoke, Spa Treatments and Cigars being charged to the taxpayers.” added Maner. “It is a felony for a state employee to misuse a P-Card and in his 16 years in the State Senate, Millar has failed to pass legislation that would make it illegal for county or municipal employees to do the same.”

“Millar, despite his position as a committee chairman, has failed to provide leadership in attacking the corruption that has bedeviled DeKalb’s government. His failure to act is the type of indifferent negligence that has allowed a culture of corruption to thrive in DeKalb’s government.” added Maner.

“I applaud the report. Mike Bowers has the kind of uncompromising integrity that makes everyone sit up and take notice when he points a finger. And what a finger; from Lee May to the featherbedding sanitation department to sweetheart contracts and good ‘ole boy backroom deals, the stealing banquet is served every day in DeKalb.” continued Maner.

“Millar has sat back and watched this happen; never condemning, never critiquing, never complaining and never stepping forward to pass the legislation necessary to address the problem. Closing his eyes to the mess in the county commission is not mere negligence, it is complicity. I call for his immediate resignation.” concluded Maner.

DeKalb County: Home of The John Boehner Republicans

Bill Simon, September 30th, 2015

Prelude

Just so no one will accuse me of being a heartless bastard, yes, I am aware Dick Williams broke his hip recently, had surgery to repair it, and is working on getting mended. His wife, Rebecca Chase Williams, currently mayor of Brookhaven, recently withdrew from her mayoral race, stating that the reason is primarily due to Dick’s hip injury. I sincerely hope Dick gets better because I am personally very familiar with physical injuries, and the time it takes to heal.

All that being said, the things I will be discussing in this Vine, when I mention either of them, are things attributed to their acts and statements made prior to Dick’s hip injury, and I will make no apologies for any of my comments about their political acts.

HD80 Special Election-Redux

Y’all might recall the recent Special Election for HD-80, right? Remember during the non-partisan Special Election run-off between Taylor Bennett and J Max Davis when Republicans like Shawn Keefe…Dick Williams…Phil Kent…Fran Millar….Greg Williams, et al. ALL whining about Catherine Bernard’s refusal to endorse her “fellow Republican” for that seat? Remember that?

I mean, in damn near every episode between the July 14th election and the August run-off (if not every episode) of the Georgia Gang, there was Dick Williams and Phil Kent whining about Bernard not endorsing J Max Davis.

In several Dekalb County GOP meetings (meetings, breakfasts, whatever), there was squishy Senator Fran Millar (DeKalb-POS) dissing and whining about why wouldn’t Catherine Bernard endorse J Max?

Brookhaven Mayoral Race

So…in a similar universe, there is a mayoral election scheduled for this November in Brookhaven. This mayoral race, like the HD80 Special Election, is a non-partisan election.

There were three people who qualified for this election: Mayor Rebecca Williams, John Ernst, and Dale Boone.

In analysis of the voter file for each of these candidates, you might find it interesting to know that Rebecca Williams is listed as a Republican (Soft R, meaning she has some Democratic primaries mixed in with showing-up for Republican primaries), while John Ernst has a solid Democratic voting record (voting in every possible Democratic Primary as far back as my records go to 2004…thus classifying him as a Hard Dem), and Dale Boone is classified as a Hard Republican (voting in only Republican primaries and never a Dem primary).

Williams is now out, leaving Ernst and Boone as the only two contenders.

And…who are all the mainstream (sic) Republicans supporting? The HARD-CORE DEMOCRAT! And, as you can see on this fundraising invitation from John Ernst, held on September 24th (before Williams got out of the race this past Tuesday), they were supporting the DEMOCRAT from Day One of this election cycle.

Wow, looky there: Shawn Keefe, Bates Mattison, Greg Williams (no blood relation to Dick or Rebecca), all listed as supporting the HARD-CORE DEMOCRAT!

As an aside, the rumor is that Todd Rehm is a paid consultant of some type to the John Ernst campaign, so, chalk-up another “mainstream Republican” to be supporting Ernst. Also…Mike Jacobs reportedly showed-up for Ernst’s kickoff event, so, for those of you who actually consider Jacobs to BE a “Republican” (he’s not, never has been, but a lot of you “Republicans” have no effing clue as to what the concept of “limited government” means), there’s another Republican who opted to support a hard-core Democrat over either Williams or, since Dale Boone has never voted in a Democratic election, not even considered supporting a fellow Republican in this non-partisan mayoral race.

But wait, that’s not all. DeKalb County Republican (sic) Commissioner Nancy Jester (R?) has issued an endorsement for the Hardcore Democrat John Ernst you can read for yourself. (Golly, I wonder what Dick Williams would say about Jester’s endorsement of a flaming Democrat after he spent his time lambasting Bernard for her unwillingness to bend to his demands?)

Now, to save me time from having to write-out the full stream of appropriate, and multiple, adjectives to describe flaming ******-hypocritical morons like Greg Williams*, Shawn Keefe, Todd Rehm, Nancy Jester, et al., in this PV, I shall abbreviate by just referring to them (along with people like Fran Millar, Dick Williams, Tom Taylor, etc. from this point forward) as “John Boehner Republicans.”

‘Cause, these are the types of “Republicans” who, not only betray the Republican concept like John Boehner has, will willingly, publicly AND enthusiastically get on their knees and kiss the ass of Democrat John Ernst like John Boehner kissed Nancy Pelosi.

So, one should wonder why, in their personal world where “Democrats = Bad, Republicans = Good” construct, they would not have supported Rebecca Williams?

Because, keep in mind, Rebecca Williams, when she was a city council member under J Max Davis’s reign as mayor, voted in support of pretty much EVERYTHING J Max wanted…so, since these same exact yahoos supported J Max for HD-80, why didn’t they support Rebecca Chase Williams for mayor?

I’ll tell you why: Because they KNEW exactly what a cluster-f*cked-up job that J Max Davis and Williams and Mattison and Gebbia produced as the leadership (sic) of Brookhaven, and they know what kind of an screw-up RCW really is.

And yet, being the John Boehner Republicans that they are, they a) supported the cluster-f*ck-up that J Max was as mayor, and wanted to see that same cluster-f*ck-up mentality be promoted to be a State Rep (where he could do even MORE damage), and b) they admonished a Constitutional, limited government Republican like Catherine Bernard for NOT endorsing either candidate in the HD-80 runoff.

I have to wonder, exactly, how all these John Boehner Republicans get through their daily affairs with their heads so firmly crammed up their own asses?

*Note to Greg Williams: Can you tell us, Sir, how many “i’s” there are in “I, Greg Williams, do hereby gladly support a hard core Democratic candidate for office over a fellow Republican”? If you get even half of the right answer, Greg, I encourage you to print this out and send it to UGA where they will likely grant you an Honorary Master’s in Cranial-Rectal Studies. (I’ll even put forth a recommendation letter for you if you want.)

If you are a voter living in Brookhaven and want to find out more about the Republican in this mayoral race, checkout Dale Boone’s website and Facebook page:

http://voteboone.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/proeaterdaleboone

MORE will be coming on this race… :-)

Cheers, Y’all!

J Max Davis and His Political Pay-Off Financiers

PV, July 13th, 2015

Rumors have it that the primary contributors to the J Max Davis Campaign for State House 80 are nothing but political insiders vying to grab onto Davis’s coattails so he will continue to feed their hunger for MORE government and MORE Backroom business deals granted to those who got business from the City of Brookhaven while J Max was mayor.

Here are the highlights of Contributors to the J Max Davis Campaign:

1) Developers who benefited from the founding of Brookhaven and the development made possible by the relaxed zoning of the ZBA-City Council:

Jed Beardsley- $250
Bravo Realty Consulting, Inc.- $1,000
Diane Calloway-Title service company- $250

2) The Trial Lawyers’ PAC who seem to be under the control of Speaker David Ralston in where they contribute money: Civil Justice PAC-GA Trial Lawyers Association- $2,500.00

3) Leadership of the House of Representatives and State Senate who love spending YOUR tax dollars to reward THEIR campaign contributors:

Rep. John Meadows- $1,500
Rep. Richard Smith- $1,500

Rep. Bert “Could my voice sound any more like I’m a weenie?” Reeves-$1,000

Sen. Fran “Like my new suit? It’s empty, just like all of them are in my closet.” Millar- $1,000

Rep. Alan “Don’t read this 2000-line legislation I dumped into the mix a few days before Sine Die” Powell- $1,500

Rep. David “State Bar Rules? What State Bar Rules? I cannot be expected to read Rules OR the Ga Constitution. I have a 2:00 PM appointment to have my belly rubbed, and then my nails done…” Ralston-Speaker of the House- $2,500

Rep. Terry “Sorry, Terry, PV is out of insults for you” England-$1,500

4) The Chamber and related Association entities

GA Chamber of Commerce – $500
GA Governmental Affairs- $250
GA Health Care Association-$500

5) Joe Gebbia-Brookhaven City Council- $2,500 (Really, Joe? Do you own stock in the company that makes Lysol or something?)

Voter Guide Summary:

1. If you want more of the unchecked development of Brookhaven (and other cities in Georgia), vote for J Max Davis and his cronies.

2. If you want more Republicans who will raise taxes and take away your rights, vote for J Max Davis.

Paul Maner Announces Candidacy for GA State Senate District 40

PV, July 9th, 2015

Maner Letterhead

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
6/28/2015

CONTACT: Friends for Paul Maner, Inc.
(404) 797-8080

info@paulmaner.com
www.paulmaner.com

Paul Maner Announces Candidacy for GA State Senate District 40

Long-time Atlanta resident Paul Maner has announced he will be seeking the Republican nomination in the upcoming 2016 state election cycle. Running as a conservative Republican, Paul Maner promises to bring honesty, leadership, & accountability to Georgia State Senate District 40 because It’s Our Time Now!

About Paul

Picture of Paul Maner

Paul Maner, an experienced Financial Advisor at National Financial Services Group (ATL), has spent 22+ years helping others become debt-free, financially independent, & personally protected. He is the author of “Bible Centered Principles for Personal Finance” and a dedicated volunteer at the Atlanta Bible Camp. Most recently, Paul was awarded the “5 Star Wealth Management Award” by a group of industry peers. Paul and his wife Paula, have been married since 1983. They have a son and daughter-in-law (married by Paul) – both currently serving in the U.S. Army as Combat Medics. Paul describes his priorities as “God, family, work, & Falcons”.

About Paul’s Campaign

Why is he running? Well, simple – Paul believes that It’s Our Time Now. It is time to take control of our state’s future with solid financial planning and conservative Republican leadership and secure Georgia’s place as a national leader in education, jobs, & economic growth.

Learn more about Paul and his campaign by visiting www.paulmaner.com

Campaign Contact:
Tyler Horne – Campaign Manager
tyler.horne1@gmail.com

Media/Press Inquiries
Connor Reddick – Media Director

connor@hardemandigital.com

J Max Davis & Tom Kurrie: The Joker and his Henchman

politicalvine, June 14th, 2015

“Until we have a better relationship between private performance and the public truth, as was demonstrated with Watergate, we as the public are absolutely right to remain suspicious, contemptuous even, of the secrecy and the misinformation which is the digest of our news.

– Author John le Carre (circa 1970s, in reference to the Watergate affair)

Time after time, it is proven that the cover-up of something that someone did wrong always leads to something worse when people start engaging in cover-up behavior.  It was the case of former President Nixon and Watergate…it is the case of former Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert and his attempted pay-off of an extortionist who accused Hastert of molesting him back when Hastert was a high school wrestling coach in Illinois.

Now, within the City of Brookhaven, we have the exposure of a cover-up of, not only unethical conduct by former Mayor J Max Davis (who is also a current candidate for Georgia State House District 80), but also unethical and, potentially, deliberate engagement of illegal conduct by Brookhaven’s contracted City Attorney, Tom Kurrie.

Since the first story PV issued on the “Lysol incident,” we’ve heard people remark to us things like “You got nothing.  No one isn’t going to not vote for someone over spraying a can of Lysol on someone…” and the like.

And…those people might have been right…had it not been for “something” being triggered in Brookhaven City Attorney Tom Kurrie’s mind that caused him to release a whole slew of new documents last Friday, June 12, in relation to this “incident.”  These documents reveal a whole ‘nother picture of things that went on under the mayorship of J Max Davis.

Perhaps Mr. Kurrie thought that he could absolve himself of any of his acts to cover-up for Davis if he just released a bunch of documents and allowed the news media to, hopefully, for his sake, just focus on the head-butting between J Max Davis and City Manager Marie Garrett and write stories about that.  Other media outlets may get distracted and focus on that; we won’t.

Brookhaven’s Code of Ethics (“BCOE”)

On the City of Brookhaven’s website, they provide this PDF for the City’s Code of Ethics.  Note that it was signed by Tom Kurrie, J Max Davis, and City Clerk Susan Hiott, all back in May 2014. 

Note that on Page 1, towards the bottom, under Definitions, Section 2.401(b) states the following: “City Council member shall be any person who is an elected member of the City Council, including the Mayor.”

Then, in Paragraph (g), it defines the following: “Members shall include City Councilmembers and Appointees.”

So, according to the City of Brookhaven’s own Code of Ethics, the Mayor is a Member

Under Sec 2.402-Prohibitions(b) (Page 2 of the PDF, 2nd Paragraph), last sentence: “Members shall not direct the activities of City staff, interfere with the day-to-day administrative functions of the City or the professional duties of the City staff, nor impair the ability of City staff to implement City Council policy decisions.”

At the time of the Lysol incident back in February 2015, why was Mayor J Max Davis even IN the office of City staff while they were engaging in their administrative functions?  When we get to some of the documentation provided by Kurrie, you will see the need to ask that question…because interfering with the day-to-day administrative functions or the professional duties of the City staff is not only NOT in his job description, but is specifically prohibited by the very Code of Ethics HE SIGNED into being.

And why did City Attorney Tom Kurrie completely ignore this potential violation by Davis of the BCOE prohibition on any Member’s interference in City operations? Why?  Well, because Kurrie apparently believed his contract with the City of Brookhaven required him to cover the ass of Davis as opposed to protect the legal entity for which he was contracted with to provide legal counsel.

It is not just the theoretical opinion of PV that Kurrie’s responsibility is to the City first, but it is clearly laid-out in Georgia State Bar Rules under Rule 1.13 Organization As Client: “If a lawyer for an organization knows that an officer, employee or other person associated with the organization is engaged in action, intends to act or refuses to act in a matter related to the representation that is a violation of a legal obligation to the organization, or a violation of law that reasonably might be imputed to the organization, and that is likely to result in substantial injury to the organization, then the lawyer shall proceed as is reasonably necessary in the best interest of the organization.”

The “organization” in this matter is the legal entity known as the City of Brookhaven.  (We’ll come back to Kurrie’s part of the cover-up shortly.)

Reading further into the BCOE, on Page 4, under (f), Use of Public Property, it states the following: “A Member shall not use City property of any kind for other than officially approved activities, nor shall he or she direct City staff to use such property for these purposes.”

Here is a PDF snapshot of a picture that is on J Max Davis’s campaign website (look at the photo on the far right).

Here is that photo when you actually click the photo to see it more clearly: JMax3 (Note the two Brookhaven patrol cars in Davis’s driveway…)

Did the Brookhaven City Council specifically authorize J Max Davis to direct/ask two City of Brookhaven police officers to drive their City-owned vehicles, and direct them to pose for a picture at Davis’s house for political campaign purposes?

Unless now-Mayor Rebecca Chase Williams, Councilmember Bates Mattison, and the other two Members of the City Council would like to publicly state that they, as a City Council, authorized Davis to direct those two police officers to use City property for political campaign purposes, it would more appear that the former Mayor, while still being Mayor, knowingly violated BCOE Section 2.402(g) that specifically prohibited him from using City property (and City personnel) for an unauthorized, unethical use.

And, if, per chance, J Max Davis consulted with the Brookhaven Police Chief for his permission to re-task two police officers to “help-out” Davis for his campaign photo-op, that Police Chief is in violation of the State Ethics Act law that prohibits contributions from public agencies to political campaigns in Georgia.

Regardless of whether Davis got permission by the City Council or not, his campaign is in violation of knowingly accepting such a contribution (violating OCGA 21-5-30.2(c) – Contributions by public agencies) to make him “look good.”

Some Documents From Kurrie

There were 8 different documents sent last Friday from Kurrie.  For the moment, PV will focus on 4 of these documents:

Memo to file by (City Manager) Marie Garrett to (HR Director) Rick Stone

Investigation-Report-Notes.pdf (Notes by Tom Kurrie about his investigation efforts into the Lysol incident)

Investigation-Report.pdf (Report issued by Kurrie on June 12)

ORR2015-126Megan-Redacted.pdf (44 pages of internal communications in response to various Open Records Requests by media)

In that last PDF listed, there is a copy of a statement (on page 7 of the PDF) by (presumably) the City in response to news reports dating back to mid-May regarding the Lysol incident:

“May 14, 2015.  Today, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reported, that a spokesperson for the City stated that an employee has accused the Mayor of sexual harassment and that the city attorney was investigating a sexual harassment claim.  This statement is in error. City Attorney, Tom Kurrie, relayed to the AJC reporter that the spokesperson had not spoken to him prior to making the statement. Mr. Kurrie told the reporter, ‘There is no investigation of sexual harassment being conducted by the City of Brookhaven. Furthermore, there has been no claim or complaint filed by anyone, employee or otherwise, alleging sexual harassment by the Mayor.’ ” 

Point of information: This Press Release does NOT appear on the City of Brookhaven website of official Press Releases (as of this moment).  So…that small matter, combined with the fact that contained within the Megan-Redacted document, there is a note from 11-Alive reporter Addie Haney that “We just got the below press release from the Mayor himself…” points to the premise that this May 14th press release was conceived and contrived as a political instrument by Mayor Max Davis himself, in conjunction with Tom Kurrie, to tamp down on the media brushfires that had sprung-up in Mid-May.

Now…PV wishes to focus your attention on Kurrie’s statement to the media back on May 14, 2015: “There is no investigation of sexual harassment being conducted by the City of Brookhaven. Furthermore, there has been no claim or complaint filed by anyone, employee or otherwise, alleging sexual harassment by the Mayor.”  

In examining Kurrie’s own documented notes of the Investigation, on Page 2, under the section noting the interview on April 28, 2015 that he and Rick Stone had with Employee 2, Kurrie writes: “She said that on February 23, 3015, the Mayor sprayed Lysol to the area of Employee 1’s buttocks in Employee 2’s office…She said it was an act that was unprofessional and disrespectful and she was embarrassed and humiliated. She said she considered the Mayor’s action to be sexual harassment.” [emphasis added]

AND…what did Kurrie subsequently claim in writing on May 14th?  “Furthermore, there has been no claim or complaint filed by anyone, employee or otherwise, alleging sexual harassment by the Mayor.”  

Now, some of you lawyer types may wish to argue the finer points of “Well….what Kurrie claimed was that there had been no claim or complaint “filed” by anyone alleging sexual harassment…”.  Good...you lawyer-types hold that thought for a moment.

Some of you lawyer types will disagree, but PV alleges Kurrie knowingly violated OCGA 16-10-20, the False statements and writings, concealment of facts, et al. Statute in that public statement he made.  That statute is pretty broad, and looks to the INTENT of the act, not just the act of misrepresenting the truth: “A person who knowingly and willfully falsifies, conceals, or covers up by any trick, scheme, or device a material fact; makes a false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or representation; or makes or uses any false writing or document, knowing the same to contain any false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or entry…”

The decision of whether Kurrie violated OCGA 16-10-20 should be taken-up by a jury of 12 peoplenot a couple of city-lawyers playing with the work lives of city employees in a smoke-filled back room.

Kurrie wrote it in his own notes that Employee 2 had said she considered the Mayor’s action to be sexual harassment.  That is an oral claim of “sexual harassment.” Kurrie sought to protect J Max Davis’s future political aspirations for State House 80 by engaging in a misrepresentation of someone’s claim that Davis didin factengage in sexual harassment.  Kurrie DOCUMENTED that claim!!!  And then he ignored what he wrote about Employee 2’s statement to him and Rick Stone.

With a Mayor repeatedly, apparently, over the course of a couple of years, violating the BCOE’s prohibitions on his interfering with the duties of City employees, and never getting called-out for it, City employees were, understandably, walking on eggshells regarding their employment, and likely hesitant to officially “file” anything.

Because when you have the Mayor conspiring with the City Attorney to conceal unethical conduct of the Mayor, you have a situation in which employees can only be in fear for their jobs, lest you have an arrogant, immature Mayor engaging in some kind of acts to fabricate evidence against an employee he doesn’t like, and he could influence other city council Members with lies to turn them against the City employee.

When PV says “repeatedly,” PV can point to the Memo from Marie Garrett to Rick Stone in which Garrett refers to the time that Mike Hassinger’s work was being interfered with by Mayor J Max (3rd paragraph of Memo): “When Mike Hassinger was here serving as the Vendor for Communications, he [Mayor Davis] berated me in executive session because I brought to his attention and repeated even what Mike told me that the Mayor was directing his work.  This is in direct violation to the city’s charter.”  (For the record, Hassinger’s employment by the City was in mid-2014.)

So, County Manager Marie Garrett has, at least, read and understood the City’s Code of Ethics, but it is clear that J Max Davis did not care what the Code of Ethics were that he was required to follow.  With his faithful City Attorney Henchman agreeing to cover his ass, and cover-up and look the other way whenever Davis violated the Brookhaven Ethics Code, J Max Davis did not need to act as a “Mayor,” but the KING of Brookhaven!

In Tom Kurrie’s Investigation Report issued on June 12, he states the following on the last page, as his final conclusion: “In my opinion, the spraying of the Lysol by the Mayor did not violate Chapter 2, Article XI of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Brookhaven–Code of Ethics, including the charter, any ordinance or policy of the City of Brookhaven nor any law of the State of Georgia.”

Who wants to bet that Tom Kurrie is wrong on that last bit about Davis’s act not being in violation of a law of the State of Georgia?  Because there is a law that controls the acts of mayors (and other elected folks) who work for cities and counties:   45-11-4. Unprofessional conduct; misdemeanor; applicability; indictment

PV will leave the reading of that law to those of you who wish to do so, but that law does prescribe steps to take when someone like an elected mayor engages in Malfeasance or Misfeasance in office.  Unfortunately, once someone is out of office (as Davis has now resigned his mayorship), that law can no longer be applied (brilliant job, Georgia Legislature! /sarcasm)

What About Tom Kurrie’s Conduct?

Very good question.  And, the answer is kind of complicated.  On the one hand, perhaps he should have a bar complaint filed against him for engaging in CYA acts to protect Mayor J Max (as opposed to helping protect his true client, the City of Brookhaven), but then this other issue of him potentially making false statements (by the way, it’s not just once) would actually come under a jurisdiction like the DeKalb DA’s office to investigate…or, perhaps the Brookhaven Solicitor’s Office?

Oh, but wait…the Brookhaven Solicitor is, by sheer coincidence, a lawyer who works for the same, exact law firm (Coleman-Talley, LLP) that Tom Kurrie works for.  Also, the lawyer, Tim Tanner, also “serves” (wonder what his monthly retainer is?) as Brookhaven’s Assistant City Attorney. 

Conflict of Interests

Wow…yes…there will be no justice in the City of Brookhaven as long as you have a lawyer who protects politicians over the needs of his actual Client that is paying him $12,500 per month in retainer (plus whatever other billable hours he is raking the City for), and a lawyer working as City Solicitor and Assistant City Attorney…and both attorneys work for the verysamelaw firm.

Ethics…Shmethics.  We don’t need no stinkin’ ethics reform in Georgia, do we?  Good, good, goooooood job, Brookhaven City Council Members!!!  Your stewardship will likely make Vladimir Putin jealous.

Today's Deep Thought

Sometimes, I think you have to march right in and demand your rights, even if you don't know what your rights are, or who the person is you're talking to. Then, on the way out, slam the door.



Google


SEARCH:
politicalvine.com
Web
February 2016
M T W T F S S
« Dec    
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
29