Letting go, for now

Where Johnson, Miles, Hinson, Ahearn, RMA’s management and the entire City Council to be found out – through actual evidence – that they are part of a vast Simpkins-wing conspiracy and sentenced to a public flogging, some among us would complain that the whip was made of rawhide that was too soft.

Where it to be proved, in a court of law, that the efforts of Wray, Brady, Hammer, Bledsoe, and indicted officers Fox and Sanders collectively did Greensboro’s citizens a great service by exposing the conspiracy named above, some among us would still say, “…there is just no way that can be true, they just had better lawyers than us.  I’ll wait for the appeal before believing it.”

I was going to weigh in this weekend with my take on the the Wray-related week that was, but after reading David Wharton’s post – which asks the really important questions - I’m reconsidering.

RMA’s president  Michael Longmire’s from-a-distance observation about Greensboro’s political culture rang all-too-true to me when I read it in today’s Ahearn/Wireback N&R article, which summarized the week’s events.  Longmire says,  

“…What is it about the culture of Greensboro, that people don’t seem to ever let go? I think this is going to be another one of those things people don’t let go.”

It’s time to let go.

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36 Comments

  1. Posted September 23, 2007 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    What you describe as letting go apprears to me as giving up. If Longmire wants to understand Greensboro, he could ask himself if he would be content to know that available information and documentation that can speak to the facts of some government action was being withheld from his community. As an investigator, would Longmire be content to have his government say “If only you knew what we know” while refusing to release information. Wihtout access to primary documentation, would Longmire, would any engaged citizen, be content to accept a version of events when those portraying that version rebuff the public’s request for documentation?

    I seriously doubt that someone of Longmire’s background and experience would tell himself to move on without examining the facts just because people in positions of authority tell him to move on. I’m surprised that you are willing, David.

  2. Posted September 23, 2007 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    Can *RMA’s president* really have a “from-a-distance” observation here? It seems to me he has a bit of a stake in this, in the form of the credibility (or lack thereof, depending on who you ask) of his company’s report.

  3. Brenda Bowers
    Posted September 23, 2007 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

    Longmire’s trying to salvage the much frayed reputation of his company and only making matters worse by showing all the ignorance of the top dog. Dear Lord, there is so much stupidity being shown in Greensboro’s officialdom nowadays the city may well become known as North Carolina’s holding pen for the mentally challenged, and in that case we will surely be getting a new business in town: RMA! Would anyone care to guess how much of an incentive the City Council would give them to move here? (LOL LOL I am having too much fun with all this folks now that the house of cards is falling down all over the heads of those who constructed it in the first place.)

    From CA’s site information on RMA contacts in Greensboro tells us it is the mayor’s bank. I also remember some very chummy e-mails to and from RMA by our dear Linda.

  4. Fred Gregory
    Posted September 23, 2007 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

    David, WERE you unjustly accused of being a racist by your employeer/the newspaper, forced to resign or be fired, lost benefits that you had worked for for 25 years, piled up legal bills that bankrupt you, would you let go. I don’t think so. And WERE you and your reputation cleared and you made whole again, I would cheer.

    In the words of Sir Winston”Never give in,never give in,never;never;never;never-
    in nothing, great or small, large or pety..”

  5. Fred Gregory
    Posted September 23, 2007 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    Let go ???? Are you suggesting David Wray lick his wounds and crawl into a dark cave ? If so shame on you. This is about right and wrong. And we certainly don’t need advice from the RMA goon squad leader who wrote that report to the specs ordered by Mitch and Linda, which BTW has been characterized by ordinary citizens and professionals, as drivel. It is true that the community has been polarized by this affair but much of the strife has been inspired by the N&R spinning for Mitch and the Simkins PAC.

  6. Posted September 23, 2007 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

    David,

    Truth seeking is not for everyone.

  7. Posted September 23, 2007 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

    No, not giving up, Roch. Just waiting it out.

    I don’t think it is over by a long shot and truth is, I can’t do anymore to affect the outcome of it all than Brenda, Fred, Ben or anyone else can.

    I’m just going trust those I have trusted all along and take my bumps if I’m wrong. We’re all just in a pissin’ contest anyway because none of us knows as much as we think we do, but we just keep beating each other up with our opinions and second guessing every tidbit that presents itself.

    I’m through with that.

    Fred, you misread my sentiments.

  8. Posted September 23, 2007 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

    One of the things I learned early on about political issues is to not spend a lot of time trying to convince people who cannot be convinced. It is a better use of time to move on to places where you might be more effective and can do some good. I don’t see you as giving up, David. I see it as adjusting your priorities. There’s not a thing wrong with that.

  9. Posted September 23, 2007 at 7:35 pm | Permalink

    What Fred said.

    David, you don’t have a clue.

  10. Posted September 23, 2007 at 10:21 pm | Permalink

    Mary… you don’t have a clue.

    JW… That’s exactly it. Priorities. I just have other things to do than try to keep up with what she said and what he said.

  11. Tony Wilkins
    Posted September 24, 2007 at 12:43 am | Permalink

    Hogg,
    Is there some type of fumes in your work atmosphere that might have caused you to become deeeeeranged?
    If a medical condition caused this post we’ll certainly understand and try to get you help.

    (BTW, the shrimp burger at Crab Shack is better than the Big Oak…try one!)

  12. Posted September 24, 2007 at 6:48 am | Permalink

    Tony, Thanks for the offer, but no, I’m thinking clearly.

    I just refuse to ascribe to conspiracy those things that can be easily be explained by human incompetence.

    Thanks for the shrimp burger tip. Is the Shack on Emerald Isle?

  13. Fred Gregory
    Posted September 24, 2007 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    David:What about the Walt Jones letter? Do you atribute the sub rosa behavior described in it to human incompetence? It has all the marks of a calumnious and treacherous plot. Most all criminal activity or for that matter conducting our every day affairs have elements of conspiracy. It takes two people and one overt act to make a conspiracy. Your wait and see attitude could be genuine or indecision based on blind faith in the characters at city hall. I suspect, from what you say, it is the latter.

  14. Posted September 24, 2007 at 9:11 am | Permalink

    That letter is troubling, Fred. And I think Miles needs to address it publicly. Believe me, I am no fan of hers and think the handling of this whole mess is screwed up largely due to the councel she has given.

    But if everything in the Jones letter is to be taken as the Gospel, what about the parts that support Johnson’s actions toward Wray?

    I am not blind to any of this and my wait and see is genuine and based on information that I have that you may not. And no, I won’t share that information because it, like all the rest, is hearsay at this point.

  15. Fred Gregory
    Posted September 24, 2007 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    David,

    WOW !! Secret info know only to Hoggard…

    So you won’t spread hearsay? At least that separates you from the N & R but someone dropped it in your lap, for a purpose, so why not pass it along? This is kinda like poker, huh ? I think you are trying to fill an inside straight.

  16. meblogin
    Posted September 24, 2007 at 10:04 am | Permalink

    David,

    My guess is that similar to yourself we have some in leadership roles that want to believe what has been presented.

    Why did the city need the RMA report? Why did they not rely on an SBI investigation?
    I was not impressed with the RMA report. How about you?

    Without all the noise…I further guess the carpet would have another bulge. How big or small remains to be seen. Currently the Jones letter has been swept. This does not create confidence.

  17. Fred Gregory
    Posted September 24, 2007 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    I agree with you david, that Miles address the Jones letter in public. How ’bout under oath ?

  18. Posted September 24, 2007 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

    Oh, I’m fairly “clued in”, David.

    I’m personally sick of the “I know stuff you-all don’t know” act . . . because I was trashed by the same kind of tactics. Turns out those guys who “knew” so much (fine upstanding community types that they were) didn’t have ANYTHING to back up what they were telling the public . . . certainly NOT ANYTHING that they could back up with personnel/medical records (under Oath – not that submitting answers under Oath mattered to my crowd).

    Meanwhile, all those folks on the sideline “waiting and seeing” didn’t help me very mcu.

  19. Posted September 24, 2007 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

    Sorry for your troubles, Mary.

    I’ll tell you what I’M sick of…
    oh, never mind.

    Sorry for your troubles.
    *************************

    Fred, I found your last comment in my spam folder, sorry for the delay in posting it.

    If the hearsay was ‘dropped in my lap’ with a motive as you suggest, then the circumstances surrounding how I received it were so random that only a Nixonian White House could have pulled it off without suspicion. But wait…, doesn’t that fit with Sam’s analogy? Wouldn’t that make me either Woodward or Bernstien? Wierd.

    Actually, I’m working on a flush. Deal ‘em up.

  20. Fred Gregory
    Posted September 24, 2007 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

    David , you overlooked this question, so in what forum do you think Miles should address her role as detailed in the Walt Jones letter ? Under oath ????????

    Oh, and FYI four spades and a club do not constitute a flush. Fold ‘em. And better luck next time.

  21. Posted September 24, 2007 at 9:22 pm | Permalink

    Sorry, Fred. I didn’t mean to skirt your question.

    I believe she should be asked about it by a council member during a televised council meeting. I don’t think they normally swear in employees during question and answer sessions. but under oath would be great by me.

    Despite your prediction of a bluff, you haven’t seen all of my cards like you think you have… The three cards I have are hearts, and jokers are wild as hell. Are you color blind?

  22. meblogin
    Posted September 24, 2007 at 10:48 pm | Permalink

    I asked questions. Any answers?

  23. Fred Gregory
    Posted September 25, 2007 at 12:10 am | Permalink

    No David. That’s like letting Bill cross examine Hillary. This is hadrball not tiddlywinks. Like Ben said truth seeking is not for eveyone.

  24. Posted September 25, 2007 at 5:44 am | Permalink

    Sorry, Meb… I just figured your questions were rhetorical.

    The only answer I can give you to why the City needed the RMA report is this: they didn’t. They wanted it.

    I suppose they figured that the public would question their own internal investigations as being biased so they hired an independent company that, by all accounts other than here in Greensboro, had a reputation for being thorough and professional.

    I suppose they figured that a large segment of Greensboro’s population would never believe that Wray, having posted such a stellar career and all, could ever mislead anyone… much less the public and his bosses. So they hired RMA in an effort to assure the public that they were trying to be thorough and unbiased.

    Silly City… how naive’ can you get?

    In retrospect, they should have saved the money because it turns out that the public would have accepted the findings of the internal investigation as being unbiased after all. (sarcasm alert)
    ********************

    OK, Fred. That was my answer to your question, but you don’t care for it. Go ahead and answer it yourself for us.

    I suppose one of them “supeenies” will be in your response if it is to be properly done under oath. Walk us through a real world scenario of how her hand will ultimately get placed on the Bible.

  25. meblogin
    Posted September 25, 2007 at 7:36 am | Permalink

    Hogg,

    How about our city council use the SBI investigation in addition to local internal resources? Is that not objective or is the SBI in on the problems with GPD?

    Perhaps a couple of folks in power needed a Private Detective agency for obvious reasons.

    With all the information that is forthcoming why did the SBI not report “any” of Wray’s wrongdoing?

    You seem to have the inside track here and I would like answers. (in a nice kind of way)

  26. Posted September 25, 2007 at 8:51 am | Permalink

    I’m afraid I don’t have the answer to why Wray was not found to have engaged in any criminal activity. But it was probably because he’s not a criminal.

    A straw man has been set up by some the way I see it.

    Johnson was going to place Wray on administrative leave because he lost trust in him. Not because he thought Wray had committed criminal acts.

    Now people are crying foul, incompetence and conspiracy because the SBI didn’t uncover any criminal wrong doing on Wray’s part.

    Talk about moving the goal posts….!

    That doesn’t come from any inside track, just from my warped sense of reasoning.

  27. Tony Wilkins
    Posted September 25, 2007 at 10:54 am | Permalink

    “Johnson was going to place Wray on administrative leave because he lost trust in him.”

    And did that happen because Johnson chose to believe the word of alleged criminal element instead of believing his own police chief who had built a career of excellent service to this community?
    Hogg, would you at least agree that since Mitchell Johnson began as manager of this city that the management has been in a constant state of chaos?

  28. Posted September 25, 2007 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

    I think he chose to believe the word of his legal staff and RMA. I don’t know how much the “criminal element” influenced the manager.

    To your second question… yes.

  29. Tony Wilkins
    Posted September 25, 2007 at 8:33 pm | Permalink

    Point taken, but who was feeding the legal staff who then fed the RMA?
    Alleged criminal element, right?
    All this talk about feeding is making me hungry.
    Speaking of RMA any thoughts on this?
    (from Guarino’s)
    At RMA’s website (www.rmasecurity.com) the following statements can be found:
    “RMA specializes in the security field.”
    “The objective in all our projects is to design and implement security solutions that address the specific needs of a unique customer.”
    You will also find on their website that the Administrative Investigation in Greensboro is the only investigation of this type shown on their resume. You will find mostly security issues listed. This would indicate to me that Greensboro was their first investigation of this kind.
    My question would be who chose RMA and why would RMA have been chosen if they, in fact, did not have any experience in these matters?

  30. Posted September 25, 2007 at 9:26 pm | Permalink

    Asst. City Atty Blair Carr had worked with them before. That’s where the connection came from. I think it was Jerry B. who reported that.

    I’d imagine that the legal staff spoke to whomever they pleased. They didn’t just speak to Hinson, Fulmore and whatshisname. They talked to a a whole host of officers – black and white, patrolman and captain. And, as I understand it, the officers where questioned under Gardner-Garrity, which, to me, gave their responses a high level of credibility.

    Attempting to sully RMA’s reputation through selective passages from their corporate ‘core values’ on their website’s is just plain straw grasping.

    Regarding Greensboro being their only listed customer for the service they provided…

    My company works on wood windows – that’s our ‘core business’, but every now and again we are hired to work on other historic wood elements. But no one says “what could they possibly know about fixing shutters.”

    Investigations are investigations, wood is wood. These were ex-police doing police-type work.

  31. Tony Wilkins
    Posted September 25, 2007 at 10:28 pm | Permalink

    David, thanks for the info about Blair Carr.

    I wasn’t trying to sully (had to look that word up to be sure I hadn’t done it, it means to damage or corrupt you know) their reputation, I was just inquiring.

    Ben, have you sullied anyone today?

  32. Posted September 26, 2007 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

    Hogg, speaking of things to be sick of, it’s fairly evident you’re running for something. So. In light of the answer you gave Tony (on that second question), if you sat on City Council, would you keep Mr. Johnson on the payroll?

    And I’d submit Gardner-Garity only has “credibilty” if the answers the officers gave stayed confidential (as they were supposed to) – as opposed to splattered all over the Internet. We haven’t seen ANY real investigation into how that happened. Perhaps these officers repsonded knowing better.

  33. Posted September 26, 2007 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

    I’m not running for anything, Mary. And have no plans to do see anytime soon. I really wanted to run for city council but decided against it.

    To your question: My answer would depend on several factors – of which I’m too tired to answer right now.

  34. Nick S
    Posted September 26, 2007 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

    Hogg,

    There is no way you can win with this crowd. Just know that the majority of the folks I talk to are sick and tired of the Wray mess. In fact, while the information shared by Johnson and Council may not have been a huge smoking gun, I was completly satisfied with their information. We would now have to believe that everyone from SBI, Special Prosecuter, Council, Johnson, RMA, and many other conspired against Wray. (not likely)

  35. Posted September 28, 2007 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    “And I’d submit Gardner-Garity only has “credibiltyâ€? if the answers the officers gave stayed confidential (as they were supposed to)” — Dr J.

    Get your facts straight. The Gardner Garrity rules prtoect officers from self-incrmination but do not make the information they give confidential–something to which Mitch Johnson admitted at last Friday’s press conference and as reported by the Rhino Times.

  36. Posted October 1, 2007 at 3:38 am | Permalink

    Roch, I would expect that kind of answer from the guy who played a big role in putting the report online (not to mention the City Manager whose security was so suckfied that it got leaked in the first place). You’ve always been touchy about this subject – I believe because of the potential for liability if one of these officers decides to sue.

    If I had to bet, I’d bet that these officers spoke believing that (1) they were protected legally, AND (2) what they said would remain confidential.

    Credibility DOES become an issue, however, if they knew they were protected legally, but suspected the report would not remain confidential. That’s the flip side of immunity. You can get away with murder.

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  1. [...] the public. That’s asking the public to take a big leap in faith. Roch says as much over at Hoggard’s If Longmire wants to understand Greensboro, he could ask himself if he would be content to know [...]

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