Saturday, April 12, 2014

At what point does ignorance become so egregious as to become manifestly willful?

I only ask because willful ignorance in politicians and public servants is nonfeasance at best.

In positions of trust, guilty knowledge is malfeasance.

I have only my own experience to draw upon, but I can't help but believe that if I was the Chief of Police, the city's Chief Administrative Officer, or the Mayor, I would have known about the problems in the police department.  Or, I would have to admit to mind numbing, bone crushing incompetence.

Chiefs and mayors are supposed to know what's going on below them.  They are expected to know.  We, the people, rely upon them to know what's going on.  They are there to protect the public interests through their oversight over the administration of our power and resources.

For people who are expected to know about problems,
for people who are relied upon to know about problems;
uttering the words "I knew nothing about the problems"
is utterly indefensible.

Of which are the words "I know nothing" more powerful evidence; corruption or incompetence?  At best, it's a toss up.

Are the people uttering those words admitting that

  • they lack the skills and ability to identify the problems we relied upon them to identify, or that
  • they made a deliberate decision to remain willfully ignorant of the problems we trusted them to identify?
In public service, willful ignorance and guilty knowledge are corruption.  Cultures of corruption and incompetence thrive on willful ignorance and guilty knowledge.

That the leadership of the City and the Albuquerque Police Department are egregiously ignorant is beyond debate.  That they are willfully ignorant is beyond debate but for a different reason.  Politically powerful people don't debate or discuss things like their feigned ignorance of problems they failed to address.

With respect to the reform of the Albuquerque Police Department and any other endeavor in need of reform, the reform begins with a candid, forthright and honest accounting of which politicians and public servants knew what when.

When the question put a politician or public servant is;
Are you willing to tell the truth,
the whole truth and nothing but 
the ethically redacted truth, about the 
public interests and your public service?
any answer except yes means no.

Future corruption and incompetence cannot be eliminated
by policies and procedures that apparently grandfather in
all the previous corruption and or incompetence.

It stands to reason.

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