WDEL Blog: Allan Loudell

Delaware Way firmly entrenched at Delaware Tech

Orlando "Lonnie" George's retirement as president of Delaware Technical Community College - after having served at the helm for 19 years, and at Delaware Tech, incredibly, for nearly 45 years - reminds one of the shortcomings, and sometimes benefits, of the so-called Delaware Way.

For a former legislator, indeed, for a time, Speaker of the state House of Representatives, to have become president of Delaware Tech -- in the process, becoming the state's most highly compensated public employee -- just reeked of the Delaware Way.

The NEWS JOURNAL's Cris Barrish captured this wonderfully in an article dating back to May 2009:

"George's pay has nearly quadrupled in 13 years, but few lawmakers would comment publicly about a former colleague whose political career was intertwined with his rise at Delaware Tech, at times raising the suspicions of fellow lawmakers..."

Only two junior college presidents in the country were commanding greater salaries and perks at the time - one, running a statewide system in Kentucky; the other, in Dade County, Florida -- both obviously substantially bigger junior college systems.

The incestuous Delaware Tech/legislative connection ensured that appropriations for Delaware Tech kept going up, even in lean years - despite overall cuts in education spending. To solidify that connection, George recruited inside players for Delaware Tech's board.

Interestingly, today's NEWS JOURNAL editorial lauding George makes no references to this earlier reporting.

(Further, the college's current executive vice president, Mark Brainard -- ex chief-of-staff to Governor Ruth Ann Minner -- could very well become Delaware Tech's next president, only underscoring the insider politics at Delaware Tech.)

Yet, by many measurements, Delaware Tech has prospered during Orlando George's reign. Del Tech hasn't produced some of the negative headlines - and community resentments - that we've seen from the University of Delaware.

Del Tech has certainly helped its students develop new skills for an evolving workplace with new requirements.

In turn, a proportion of the in-state high school students denied admission to the Unversity of Delaware have ended up at Delaware Tech -- or Wilmington College. So the cheering section for Delaware Tech has grown, and many would give Lonnie George his due.

Posted at 8:50am on January 29, 2014 by Allan Loudell

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Comments on this post:

Wed, Jan 29, 2014 9:27am
Talk about "the Delaware Way." Allan Loudell, and the radio stations with which he has been associated, are known for their puff-ball, kissy-face, never critical coverage of the Bidens, pere et fils. Never a mention of Daddy Biden's "special treatment" of the banking industry and the pay-offs and special consideration he received over the years, nor his cozy treatment of the chemical industry.

Notice what's missing today is any mention of the outing of Beau's gestapo tactics against his critics. If you all hate drones and phone surveillance, you will really hate this...
Delaware subpoena targets blogger's Facebook page

Attorney General Beau Biden's office wants the identity of the person or persons behind "Peaceful Rioters for Wilmington, Delaware."

WILMINGTON, Del. -- Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden's office wants to force Facebook to identify the creators of an anonymous page that often excoriates Wilmington and New Castle County officials, saying the identities are needed in an ongoing criminal investigation.

The American Civil Liberties Union has intervened on behalf of the owners of the Facebook page, "Peaceful Rioters for Wilmington, Delaware," seeking in a Superior Court filing to quash Biden's subpoena. ...

The article goes on to say that Beau tried to keep his subpoena secret, just like the Patriot Act black shirts in DC do for their FISA witch hunts. Looks like some in the local media are helping Beau keep it secret, probably they will say it's to protect future access.

Wed, Jan 29, 2014 10:06am
OK, it's not Friday. There's has been a lot of commentary about how the church hierarchy looks the other way at child molestation by priests, and moves the pedophile priests around when they get caught. Turns out, school administrators have been playing that games, too...
What about perv teachers?

...Similar crimes play out every day in this country's public and private schools, aided and abetted not by scandal-averse religious leaders but by bean-counting, bloodless administrators. They decide it's quicker, cheaper and more efficient to let a perv go than to fire him for cause, alert the authorities and save other kids from being victimized. ...
Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/news/20140129_What_about_perv_teachers_.html#rJ65occU9z1bvlSw.99

Wed, Jan 29, 2014 7:02pm
OK, I was wrong. I thought there'd be some outrage about Beau Biden using police state tactics to go after critics. Maybe there's a triple standard. The third standard is for the Bidens.

Mike from Delaware
Wed, Jan 29, 2014 9:11pm
Billsmith: that should be a major story , especially here in Delaware. I can't get to that news story now (on my IPod), but will try to remember to check that out later. I agree that is an outrage. No wonder the ACLU is getting involved. Once again a Biden will embarrass Delaware.

Thu, Jan 30, 2014 3:31am
It's in USA Today, which apparently picked it up from Delaware Online (News-Journal) if you can get past their pay wall.

Mike from Delaware
Thu, Jan 30, 2014 6:19am
Billsmith: I added a USAToday app in my iPod & was able to find the story & it was free . So now that the News Journal & USA Today carried this story, I wonder if WDEL & WILM & philly TV will report it?

That should be a major story.

Thanks for posting it.

Allan Loudell
Thu, Jan 30, 2014 7:09am
I interviewed probably Delaware's top free press/free speech lawyer about it, plus the head of the Delaware ACLU.

We'll post those interviews ASAP, but we're having problems with our server today (which also may delay a blog post today).

Beau Biden's office would only tell me that a criminal investigation was underway before investigators happened to come upon that Facebook page.

I'm not a Facebook subscriber, but I obtained copies of some of the posts. Most contain scathing political criticism of city and county officials.

One post alleges nefarious activities by David Grimaldi, top aide to County Executive Tom Gordon, and seeks any further information about Grimaldi. I will not repeat the defamatory allegations here.

The Delaware ACLU's executive director, Kathleen MacRae, says she has no idea who or what is being investigated.

One presumes more will come out when the A.G.'s office argues before a judge that the information sought for an ongoing criminal investigation justifies betraying the privacy of the blogger or bloggers.

The NEWS JOURNAL itself reported it learned about the situation when the blogger e-mailed the newspaper.

This morning (Thursday), the NEWS JOURNAL sheds some new possible light on what's going on. The paper quotes county Police Chief Elmer Setting as saying the state subpoena is connected to a county investigation of a suspected hate crime. Remember the unsigned note castigating County Executive Gordon and his top aide, David Grimaldi, found in the mailbox of a home in the Autumnwood development near Hockessin last October, and then the frisbees with Nazi references - again attacking Gordon & Grimaldi (called a "goon") - found outside the house?

Thu, Jan 30, 2014 8:07am
Except Brat Biden wants to do all this in secret. That's the problem here. He wants to run a Star Chamber with secret subpoenas, just like FISA but without the flimsy pretense of national security. And your response is to call Brat Biden, who of course is going to lie or stonewall. One presumes Brat Biden will try to keep any court proceedings secret, as well. I notice you trying to deflect this away from Biden's conduct to the Facebook posters. If you are going to flack for the Bidens, you should be in their employ. PR people get much better pay than local newsies.

Funny that the only reference to Biden on this site is about the old man saying he thinks he could be president.

Mike from Delaware
Thu, Jan 30, 2014 8:26am
Allan: I don't remember the story. Did this letter in the mail box threaten Gordon or Grimaldi in any way, other than bashing them and calling them names? Who's mail box was this letter found? Then some frisbees with Nazi references calling them goons, again, unless advocating the over throw of the government or bodily harm to them or their families, I believe that is still protected free speech under the first amendment.

My opinion is based on what little I know of this story, essentially what both you and Bill have posted here, and what I read in the USA Today blog piece Bill provided.

I agree with Bill, that Little Biden should NOT be doing this in secret. That sort of thing makes me hear the sound of Jack booted thugs marching in a goose step with German Marshal Music playing in the background. Not the image Little Biden should want associated with him, as I figure some day, possibly in 2016, he'll want to run for Govenor.

The other question is, would he be doing this if the folks being bashed were Republicans? My guess is, probably not.

Allan Loudell
Thu, Jan 30, 2014 8:33am

I can't even get to Beau Biden anymore. Ever since his second hospitalization. Just his press representative. Very very frustrating. Beau Biden continues to be invisible.

But as I noted above, I'm in contact with the Delaware ACLU, the top attorney on free speech/free press matters, and now I'll be reaching out to the police chief.

I have no interest in being a flack for anyone ever.

(If I can't - in good conscience - vote for any politicians on the ballot except for pedestrian positions near the bottom of the ballot, then it would follow I couldn't work for one.)


The stories ran on WDEL and in The NEWS JOURNAL... I don't know about anywhere else.

The family in question in that rather affluent neighborhood insists they have absolutely no ties to either Gordon or Grimaldi, and neither Gordon nor Grimaldi live around there. Police at the time labeled these incidents as harassment, possibly a hate crime. As far as I know, no direct threat to the family, but the swastika was interpreted as a threat.

Thu, Jan 30, 2014 9:36am
Wow! So much agreement today. Nice thing about being a single-standard guy is sooner or later everybody will have agreed with me on something (sooner or later everybody will have disagreed with me, too).

MFD: Just curious. How is it you have to use an iPhone app to view a story on the USA Today website? Don't you have desktop Internet access any more? If so, how do you access this site?

If you don't want to fill up your phone's memory with dedicated apps, most news websites (and others) have mobile versions - that look pretty much like their app versions - that you can access with your phone's mobile browser. Often, when the site sees you're using a mobile device, it automatically goes to the site's mobile version. If not, Google the site's name plus the word mobile. Usually the mobile site address is "m" or "mobile" instead of "www" (like m.usatoday.com).

Mike from Delaware
Thu, Jan 30, 2014 10:13am
Billsmith: I'm a bit of a Luddite and probably just screwed up trying to get to their site, but found their app available, so since it was free and apparently lets you read their stuff for free, figured why not?

What I'd like to figure out is how to remove apps I put on that I no longer see value for keeping.

Thu, Jan 30, 2014 10:57am
From the NEWS JOURNAL today:"..that included references to County Executive Tom Gordon and his deputy" "... that disparaged Gordon and his top aide"

Gee, sounds kinda familar doesn't it? Deja Vu...

Thu, Jan 30, 2014 11:47am
MFD: Go to http://www.wikihow.com/Delete-an-iPhone-App

Mike from Delaware
Thu, Jan 30, 2014 1:20pm
Thanks, Bill I'll check it out.

Mike from Delaware
Thu, Jan 30, 2014 5:33pm
Billsmith: Thank you, that was so easy, once you know how to do it.

Thu, Jan 30, 2014 6:01pm
MFD: You're welcome. And that's true of most things. How is always the tough part.
I have an Android phone and I couldn't live without it. Not for phoning or texting but for audio. Podcasts. Live audio streams. On demand. It's why I never listen to live radio any more.

Mike from Delaware
Thu, Jan 30, 2014 7:22pm
Billsmith: I understand. I listen and watch a lot of stuff now on my iPod at home; at work either the radio, CD's for audio books, or online.

Mrpizza: here is a news story you'd probably be interested in, it's about the pizza business, and how the national chains are getting an upper hand on the mom and pop pizza joints. Enjoy.


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