Saturday, August 16, 2014

What is the board hiding? Do we have a right to know or are we just being nosey?

I have argued on every appropriate occasion, public servants have a right to private lives.  The right to privacy is a Constitutionally protected human right.  A right that cannot be abrogated except by due process and a warrant.

Nevertheless, when private and public lives blend, the people whose power and resources are being spent, have a right to know what's going on.

You will notice, when powerful people hide truth, they never defend the hiding except by citing the law that allows them to do it.  APS for example, will not tell you why they are hiding the findings of investigations into corruption and incompetence in the leadership of their police force, just how.  How of course is the ubiquitous "its a personnel issue".

If the truth about Brooks and his wife includes misappropriation of public property, the luxury car entrusted to Brooks, then the people have more than a prurient interest in knowing the truth.

Is the settlement designed to protect genuine privacy rights or to hide evidence of a lack of oversight by the board over their superintendent?

They could defend their need for privacy without invading their privacy.  There is ethical redaction of the truth.  But you can't just claim the redaction is ethical, you have to prove it.

Proving it is easy enough to do, you simply have to justify the hiding.  Its only a problem if the why you're hiding the truth is as damning as the truth you are hiding.  Which it always is, or they would offer a reasonably specific justification as a matter of course.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Superintendent Soap Operas

Winston Brooks overt dislike of women including a simmering disdain for a "wife" whom he kept at arms length hidden conveniently away in Kansas was his ultimate undoing. Allegedly, when Winston's "wife" found out her husband had particularly close working relationships with a few male subordinates, she wasn't willing to continue playing by his rules. Worried the Superintendent's out of control conduct might endanger his contract and retirement she began questioning what was happening in the Albuquerque Towers. This was the cause of the domestic incident earlier in the year where Brooks is clearly drunk and slurring his words. The domestic was was changed to a medical incident due to Brook's elevated blood sugar. My blood sugar would go up significantly too if I drank a pitcher of booze. Winston used his position and the APS police to wrangle out of charges being filed against him or his "wife" because one or both should have been arrested based on their violent conduct but the potential for divorce litigation or another messy domestic incident was a potential risk the board had to consider. The board was also concerned about the pending cases in which Brook's clear disgust for APS female administrators whom he openly criticized for "sleeping their way to the top" would expose his own sexual misconduct on district trips and pattern of dangling APS leadership positions and fast-tracking those men who demonstrated willingness to accommodate the Superintendent's open schedule and lonely lifestyle. The board may never disclose their "investigation" but the Tower walls have eyes and ears as do Winnie's neighbors and more importantly Winnie's bartenders. Allegedly, Winnie's shenanigans made former superintendent Brad Allison look like a choir boy. This was the justification for the "investigation" but frankly, the board was simply ready to move forward with a Superintendent who recognizes that it is his or her primary job to ensure that APS contracts and dollars flow to the right people.

Anonymous said...

Hey Ched,

Do you remember the deal with FOG? Wasn't Marty a past president and wasn't it he who nominated Brooks? I think it is quite a joke that FOG is insisting we should know now!

ched macquigg said...

Marty Was scheduled to be President but was passed over when the board of directors was told about his part in covering up the corruption in the leadership of the APS Police force.

Where did you see the FOG insistence?

Anonymous said...

Hey Ched,
The article is on KQRE

http://tablet.krqe.com/r2940/1c43951d

NMFOG: Public deserves answers in Brooks resignation

Anonymous said...

So is this why Brad Winters and Eddie Soto ran for cover... I mean retired?

Anonymous said...

As disturbing as Brook's conduct may be, the School Board created this monster. When Brooks was allowed publically to demean and discredit (and often demote) many female administrators -- Ruby Ethridge, Linda Sink, JoAnn Coffee, Nikki Dennis, Blanca Lopez, Andrea Felts, Susan Reuter Stanojevic, Mike Bachicha (who stood up for a woman), etc. -- despite their excellent track record in APS, and NO ONE said a word, the monster was created. He welded is power without consequence and NO ONE seemed to question his judgment or his authority. It would not surprise many of us within APS if he was having a close and personal relationship with one or more male subordinates. That would most definitely explain why people without any experience in education were making 6 figures. APS has lost some outstanding educators because this many was allowed to bully them! Thank God he is gone. It will take years to rebuild trust and reestablish collegiality within APS.