Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Why is it that when elected Republicans fail, they blame everyone but themselves?

This is what happens when you elect people to oversee government who have nothing but contempt for the professionals who work in public services...

Whether it is GOP Mayor Jim Lane of Scottsdale blaming his own City Manager, John Little, for all that ails Scottsdale or nativist Republican Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio crying about the unfairness of it all when the professionals at ICE decline to continue official Federal sanction to the anti-Mexican railroad he's been engineering at MCSO, GOP elected officials invariably blame everyone but themselve for their own shortcomings as public officials.

While the likes of Arpaio and even Lane are fairly high-profile examples of this phenomenon, there are incidents of it even at the lower-levels of government.

From AZCentral.com -

An out-of-state team investigating the Maricopa County Community College District governing board released a 55-page report this week validating complaints about the board overstepping its authority and engaging in "rogue" behavior.

"The evidence is compelling that there are many elements of board behavior that urgently need to be addressed," the report released to the governing board states.


Among the report's findings:

• Board members treat one another and college officials with a lack of respect and civility, creating "a climate of fear and intimidation" and "a culture of mistrust throughout the organization."

The board members have made 156 information requests of staff, impinged on their responsibilities, called employees at home on weekends and threatened to have employees fired.

• Four of five board members are acting "without any discernible understanding or appreciation of either the complexity of the (college) district or of the role/responsibility of the board as a governing body."

Further, several board members have "no desire to learn to act appropriately or to understand that their role and authority is primarily as a group that governs."

• The board has on various occasions usurped the authority of Chancellor Glasper and the Chancellor's Executive Council, choosing in one case to draft the 2010-11 operating budget without input from staff.

• Input from leadership, faculty and staff is discouraged and ignored by the board.

• Board members engage in bad behaviors, including making religious comments at board meetings; uttering inappropriate and offensive comments about race, ethnicity, religion and gender; and harassing students and employees.

• Some board members have tried to control content in college courses and influence admission into preferred college programs.

Of course, the Board couldn't let these criticisms of their acts go unchallenged.

From Board member Jerry Walker, published in the East Valley Tribune -
The recent “review” of the governing board for the Maricopa County Community College District by a team from the Higher Learning Commission is yet another example of how too few individuals fully understand the state-defined role of the five-member, publicly elected board. Simply put, the buck stops with us, the board members, and we are the ones who are ultimately responsible for stewardship of the public monies entrusted to us.


Accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission is important for academic programs, but this voluntary review and approval of curriculum will not impose itself on the role and responsibilities voters have entrusted me and other board members to perform.

My style may be direct, but voters in my district and throughout Maricopa County can rest assured that I will continue to work lawfully with integrity, loyalty, fairness and consistency despite bureaucratic efforts at the district and the colleges to blame the board for their ills. They resist accountability and change that will ultimately benefit the students and taxpayers alike.
So, the majority of the Governing Board members have messed up (actually, "messed up" may not be the right term here since most of their bad acts appear to have been deliberate) and have endangered the accreditation and future viability of the very organization they were elected to oversee and nurture, and it isn't their fault.

Nope, it's the fault of those "durned" bureaucrats. Government and public service would just be so much better without actual public service professionals getting in the way of pure-hearted folks from the GOP. {For the snark-deficient, that what is called "sarcasm."}

BTW - Walker may be the wrong Board member to serve as pointman of the Board members' defense of their actions, attitudes, and statements, If anything, he may be the worst offender. More info here, though be warned, the source very definitely has a viewpoint. The comments, particularly the one regarding the custom license plate that Walker has on his truck, lend some insight into Walker's mentality and the root of his disdain for the District's Chancellor.

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