Apparently, Terry Burns of the Indianapolis Times did not like it that I went to a council committee meeting and dared question Sheriff Frank Anderson about his commissary fund, and the millions he makes off of the inmate telephone contract. Or that I dared asked that the Sheriff provide some documentation regarding the sudden revelation that he needs an additional $4.8 million in taxpayer funds to pay a contract arrearage for a private jail contractor (CCA) that has existed for years, but he only recently bothered to tell anyone about. Or that I asked if he ever pursued indemnification for attorney's fees from the private jail contractors. Apparently if you question anything the good Sheriff does, that means you believe in a "conspiracy." For those scoring at home, the Sheriff and his representatives refused to provide any answers or provide any documentation regarding the $4.8 million.
What I particularly like is that Burns (as other Indianapolis Democrats) has no problem throwing over the side traditional Democratic constituencies. Democrats I thought were supposed to be for the "downtrodden" and "helpless." Apparently that doesn't apply to inmates in a jail who die or get injured because they don't get their medication because a private company is cutting corners to make more money. Or it doesn't apply to hard-working nurses who are made by a private correctional company to escort inmates with violent felony histories throughout a low security facility because the private company doesn't want to endanger their profit margin by hiring more security. Speaking of which, I thought Democrats were against privatization. Apparently the local Democrats are perfectly fine with privatization when the contractors are contributing money to Democrats.
FYI, none of those so-called "frivolous lawsuits" have been dismissed.
Here is Burns' hard-hitting piece:
Conspiracy theories and other strange thingsThanks Terry! Keep the attacks coming.
Disgruntled Republican, mayoral hopeful and political wingnut Paul Ogden put on a quite a show the other day before the City-County Council's Public Safety Committee.
Apparently, Ogden couldn't find a health care town hall meeting to disrupt so he brought his act to the City-County Building instead. The performance was vintage Ogden, plenty of unsubstantiated allegations, a hint of paranoia, unbridled innuendo and rousing conspiracy theories. (Watch out Paul, I think I see a guy over there on the grassy knoll!)
Anyway, Odgen's [sic] attempt to hijack the committee's public safety budget hearing proved futile. (Remember, this is the same guy who's filed countless frivolous lawsuits challenging the operations at Marion County Jail II.)
While we won't get into the specific charges leveled by Ogden (they don't merit the space), let's just say that he clearly doesn't understand contracts or the Indiana code. However, the most disturbing part of Ogden's clownish performance was his ability to weave some clearly strange and bizarre conspiracy theories. No wonder the GOP figures that its better off with out him. Maybe the Libertarians have an opening.
I'm wondering when and why it became so terrible to actually attend public meetings and ask questions.
Guess some folks want to return to the 'fat, dumb and happy' days. They seem to prefer a Mushroom Society - "Keep 'em in the dark and feed 'em manure."
Burns' entry is an inaccurate depiction of events. You tried to present concerns and were interupted and badly used by the Sheriff's lawyer.
I just hate this crap that comes from both parties that defames someone who has valid critisms to make of an elected official of that party.
The Democratic party would be hollering at the top of its lungs if Jail II were under contract to a Republican Sheriff. I would prefer it stick to principles rather than attack somebody who is trying to get a grevious problem fixed. But then, that's not how the County Chairmen of either party roll.
Thanks, Jabber and DI,
Frankly I was asking questions that the council members should have been asking, regardless of party. When a person comes in and says they have a $4.8 million arrearage on something that has existed for years, but is only now being disclosed, well maybe it's time to start asking questions.
Both Republican and Democrat Sheriffs have a history of abusing the commissary fund. It's not a partsian thing. It's a right and wrong thing.
I read that today and wasn't at all surprised by Terry's column. The Democrats and Republicans act just like union workers. You have to protect the weakest links in the chain no matter what they do. Lets just spin the words and God forbid lets not deal in real numbers and facts. That would just cloud the issue.
Well Pauly the camera don't lie.
Thanks, Arnie, I totally agree. The Sheriff's people and Murray came off looking like they were trying to hide something...probably because they were.
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