Yeah, it's about time for the Delaware medical examiner to be suspended WITHOUT pay
In an interview with me Wednesday afternoon, State Representative Mike Mulrooney (D-Pennwood) - vice chair of the House Public Safety Committee - said it's about time for suspended state Medical Examiner Richard Callery to stop collecting his nearly $200,000 salary. Callery has still been receiving his full pay since his suspension at the end of February, even as the evidence mounts of tampered or missing drug evidence, plus Callery basically moonlighting with his private business.
Yeah. About time.
Whether State Treasurer Chip Flowers' onetime assistant Erika Benner, or now Richard Callery, it continues to amaze me how these folks can stay on the gravy train for so long.
Sure, someone should not be dropped from the payroll just because allegations surface, but this is ridiculous.
As Mulrooney put it to me: "I'm an electrician. If I messed up as bad as Callery did, my job, I'd be fired. I wouldn't be getting paid, and I don't know why anyone else is, especially when it's this blatant in the face of the taxpayers."
When I asked Mulrooney why Callery wasn't cut earlier, Mulrooney cited legal issues.
Meanwhile, the public defender's office wants hundreds of drug convictions and drug cases dismissed because of unreliable evidence.
And where has Callery been? He hasn't said a boo in public. Nothing. Doubtless, on advice of legal counsel. But just once, I'd like someone with this kind of cloud over his/her head to come out and 'fess up, or proclaim the case for his/her innocence.
As a legal maneuver around the legal barriers, they can put his money into escrow, where it can sit independent of his reach... immediately... and that way the investigation can take as long as is needed for both parties to get close to the truth...
Thu, May 15, 2014 8:41am
It would be helpful if we had an attorney general in office. Perhaps his pay should be put in escrow until he returns to work.
Thu, May 15, 2014 9:07am
Speaking of Bidens... Why is there no outrage over Beau Biden's brother, Hunter Biden, after he accepted a position with Ukraine's largest private gas producer?
Earl: Why SHOULD there be outrage? Hunter isn't in public office - he's a private citizen. He's allowed to work for whomever he chooses, isn't he?
Thu, May 15, 2014 9:20am
I'd have to agree with Shawn. Plus, it's the Ukrainian gas company, NOT the Russian! And it's a position on the board - from what I understand - not a regular position.
But, we'd have to concede the obvious: It's unlikely Hunter would have been offered such a position without the family name!
But back to the main post, I'd love someone to reflect on the question: When a state worker - or especially, someone high up in state government - is accused of misconduct, negligence, etc. - HOW LONG should that person remain suspended WITH pay?
If cut off immediately - without some investigation - a person's personal financial history could go up in flames on mere accusation. (Plus, the state might risk a pretty costly lawsuit.) But if that person remains on the payroll with full benefits, for months, isn't that person getting a better deal, at taxpayers' expense, than a person similarly accused, working in the private sector?
Thu, May 15, 2014 9:31am
Right...just a regular Joe Q. Public... not like he's the son of the V.P. and brother of Delaware's Attorney General. But, whatevs.
As to the main topic... Is it possible to pay the accused person a percentage of his/her original pay, (while under investigation) and if found innocent, pay that person the remaining amount AND costs for legal fees?
Thu, May 15, 2014 9:41am
Allan, I'm sorry to hijack your post, but I really don't understand Earl's issues.
So Earl, are you saying that any family member of any politician should not be allowed to take certain jobs? What jobs are ok? Which are off-limits? Who decides and watches out for it? What's the cut-off point for how high a family member can be in office before your own job possibilities must take a hit? Is this a rule just for families you don't like, such as the Bidens, or must Republicans follow this arbitrary rule as well? I mean, does anyone really think that GWB could possibly ever have made a realistic run for President or TX Gov without his daddy's name? Isn't that worse than a lawyer getting a job on a board of a private foreign company?
To quote President Jed Bartlet on The West Wing: "Your indignation would be a lot more interesting to me if it wasn't quite so covered in crap!"
Thu, May 15, 2014 9:54am
Have you ever worked for state government? It's amazing what happens in a state office workplace. From my years working there, the biggest thing I saw was the sexual harrassment, and the complete disregard for actual work. Four people were constantly being written up for sexual harrassment; two of whom, were directors, and the other was moved to another agency in a director position.
To actually fire someone in state government is a long and drawn-out process. For basic issues (incompetence), it took close to a year to actually get rid of someone with all the hoops and time frames that had to be worked out.
Mike from Delaware
Thu, May 15, 2014 10:19am
EarlGrey said: "Is it possible to pay the accused person a percentage of his/her original pay, (while under investigation) and if found innocent, pay that person the remaining amount AND costs for legal fees?"
That sounds like a viable solution. Say, if in such a situation, their pay got reduced to 75%; if found to be innocent, you get the remaining 25% with interest and legal fees covered.
Thu, May 15, 2014 11:33am
Shawn: I'm saying that Democrats are hypocrites...they rail against the Koch Brothers, Keystone XL and the Newark Data Center and yet somehow don't have a problem when the Veep's own son decides to take a high-level position at an "evil" energy company. Understand?
Thu, May 15, 2014 12:04pm
Earl: No, I really don't follow you, and I don't think I'm being purposely obtuse. Yes, Democrats tend to rail against corporate interests' disdain for environmental issues. But it's also lunacy to think that every member of a politician's family agrees with everything the politician believes. Look at Dick, Liz and Mary Cheney. Mary is fairly liberal. Are Republicans morally offended that one of Dick's kids goes against the Republican and daddy's grain? "How dare she?" No, she's allowed to live her own life.
Likewise, Hunter Biden doesn't have to agree with everything daddy and big brother do, and isn't beholden to political party platforms. Whether we like his job or not is irrelevant - he's a private citizen, allowed to do and believe whatever he wants. Now, if he decides to run for office, then things may change a bit. But for now, you're essentially punishing the son for the sins of the father.
I'm not saying Democrats aren't hypocrites... I just don't see this as one of those times. And calling out Democrats as if they have the market cornered on hypocrisy? That's fairly hypocritical of you. I can give you plenty of examples of Republican and Tea Party hypocrisy. How would you like the list... alphabetical, chronological, order of severity?
Thu, May 15, 2014 12:57pm
Shawn: You are correct that all are at times hypocritical...my only point was that "evil" energy seems like such a huge deal to those on the Left that the Hunter Biden/gas company board of directors story would be the same as if news broke that one of Bush's daughters decided to be on the board of directors for Planned Parenthood.
Thu, May 15, 2014 1:16pm
And if she were? More power to her for not feeling confined to the political ideology of her father. Are you saying that, if Democrats "should" be throwing a fit over Hunter's position, that Republicans would/should throw a fit over that news?
Maybe my confusion is... who are you angry at with your original post? Joe Biden? Hunter Biden? Democrats in general? What's the cause of your frustration/annoyance?
Mike from Delaware
Thu, May 15, 2014 1:18pm
Actually you both are correct. Both sides are hypocrites when it serves their purposes.
The only reason Liz Cheney's lifestyle made news was because her father was VP Dick Cheney. Same with Hunter Biden. It would be as though Rev. Billy Graham's son had become a atheist instead of a Christian preacher. All have the right to live their lives as they see fit.
As I recall, Reagan's wife Nancy, Barbara Bush, and Laura Bush were all pro-choice even though their husbands were outspoken advocates of the pro-life agenda.
James Carville and Mary Matalin are another classic example of how opposites attract and do not have the same point-of-view politically. Carville is about as a liberal Democrat as you're likely to find, and his wife Mary is about as a conservative Republican as you're likely to find.
Thu, May 15, 2014 1:54pm
Shawn: My main annoyance is with the Democrats who demonize the Koch Brothers (Libertarians btw) as evil incarnate.
I should have done a much better job in my original post...
It should have said something like: Why is it that members of the Left, who rail against the Koch Brothers, are silent when a Biden works for an "evil" energy company like the Koch Industries?
Thu, May 15, 2014 2:15pm
Oh, well, the Koch brothers ARE evil incarnate. But that's a discussion for another day. :)
Thu, May 15, 2014 2:20pm
Although I still stand by one of my earlier comments. Democrats rail against the Koch brothers because they have inserted themselves into the political discussion. Hunter has not, to this time, delved into the political arena. So as a private citizen, he's not "fair game". Kinda like reporters being told to stay away from the Bush girls or Obama's daughters... just because their dad is president, doesn't mean they're fair game as paparazzi fodder.
Thu, May 15, 2014 3:07pm
Did Bush/Cheney/Halliburton/Middle East/energy involve politics? Yep and so does Biden/Ukraine/Russia/energy...
Thu, May 15, 2014 3:10pm
Hunter may be a private citizen...but the Ukraine/Russia issue makes this a political issue.
Mike from Delaware
Thu, May 15, 2014 3:30pm
EarlGrey: The Koch brothers may not be evil incarnate, but they have way too much influence in our political process due to their wealth; the same with Grover Norquist. That's saying it as nicely as I can.
Cheney/Bush having no bids and Cheney's company Halliburton gets the trillions of dollars in Iraq War. Come on Earl, I'd expect Sarah Palin or Christine O'Donnell not to see the bad ethics, conflict-of-interest, etc., with this, but you are a far more reasonable person.
If Hunter's company gets that sort of special treatment via Obama/Biden or any DEM Prez [Prez Hillary for example] then I'd be as upset about Hunter's company as I am about Cheney's company.
Thu, May 15, 2014 4:45pm
Earl: You know exactly what I mean about it being "political"... Hunter's job being in Ukraine isn't even in the same sport, let alone league or ballpark, as the Koch brothers trying to influence elections, and you know it... now you're being purposely obtuse.
But ok, so let's say it is political. So Hunter has no business being involved? Isn't everything, on some level, political? Again, where's this arbitrary line between something being political or non-political, that would suddenly make something ok for Hunter to be involved?
You're grasping, sir.
Thu, May 15, 2014 8:44pm
Shawn: I concede that Hunter's Ukraine involvement does not reach the same level of political influence as the Koch Brother or George Soros...but he is indeed working in the midst of some intense political powers in Ukraine v. Russia.
Mike: I totally agree with you on Grover...that guy is a weasel.
Fri, May 16, 2014 6:56am
Earl: So again I ask, what's ok and what's not? Where's the line? As a private citizen, what is Hunter allowed to do or be involved with? Who decides and polices that? I mean, should the government prevent him from being involved in a private company because of who his father is? I thought you want less government interference in our everyday lives...?
Fri, May 16, 2014 8:49am
Shawn: This topic has been beaten to death...a private citizen should indeed be able to work wherever he/she desires, but do you really believe that Hunter Biden's new job had nothing to do with who his father is, and has nothing to do with politics? No one has said he should be forbidden by the government from taking the job...my question was/is:
"Why is it that those on the Left, who rail against the Koch Brothers, are silent when a Biden works for/represents an "evil" energy company just like Koch Industries?"
No government legislation/policies/regulations needed... just a question about the double-standard.
Fri, May 16, 2014 10:13am
So you're not asking, "Why is he in this position", but "Why aren't Democrats upset about it?"
Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?
- Matthew 3:7
Fri, May 16, 2014 10:37am
Glad you could finally understand.
Thanks for the soapbox sermon... but I am tired of both sides of the political aisle saying things are OK if it's "their guy" or "their issue"... I used to think that way about Bush and, as I have aged/matured, realize that a lot of the things he did in office were wrong, but he was "on my side" so I agreed with him/Republicans.
I have learned/changed... maybe others here can do the same.
Mike from Delaware
Fri, May 16, 2014 1:32pm
EarlGrey: Well said. You and I are in complete agreement on this.
It's one reason I'm a registered Independent voter. I too am tired of both sides looking the other way when THEIR guy/woman does something unethical, wrong, immoral, etc, etc, but makes a big deal out of it when the other side does any of that.
It's one reason I can't stand to listen to Rush/Hannity/Beck/Jensen, Fox "News", or MSNBC. At least Al Mascitti does acknowledge when he doesn't agree with the DEMS, or on those occasions when agrees with the G.O.P. Al's got other attitudes I don't like, but I give him high marks for not being a one-sided hypocrite as the others truly who rather impale themselves than say anything good about the DEMS or the G.O.P. [if talking about MSNBC].
You are correct. Bush Jr. made many mistakes; so has Obama. Sadly, the so called best-and-the-brightest rarely live up to the hype. Maybe the government needs more regular John and Jane Does running the government rather than all these elite folks.
As I quipped the other day on a different thread here, maybe it's time to start a new political party called: SEABEE: Screwed Enough Already By Elected Elites. Frankly we're getting it from both parties.
Fri, May 16, 2014 7:54pm
I agree with you about the SEABEES...and still believe at it's core that's what the Tea Party is all about.
If you want to better understand how I view the Tea Party here is a documenary showing who/what this current "party" is about...it also gives a great history lesson on the original Boston Tea Party...You and Mr. Loudell might both find it interesting.
Mike from Delaware
Mon, May 19, 2014 3:55pm
EarlGrey: I listened to the video you posted [produced by Glenn Beck's Blaze]. Problem is the TEA party seems to ONLY stand for no more taxes, and offers no solutions to fix the problems we have as a nation.
Yep, they are against this and that, but never seem to be for anything.
Sure, it would be great to have no one on Welfare, but you've got to first have jobs for these folks. Secondly, the people out-of-work - be they welfare queens or unemployed former workers of the 2007 Crash - is for them to have skills needed by companies today. Most of the unemployed apparently lack such skills; thus the companies hire educated foreigners over many Americans.
So the government would first have to educate these folks. Oh, can't do that, because TEA folks are against ANY and ALL government programs, so they've created a barrier that allows the problem fester and grow.
Sure, a smaller government would be a great thing, but such a change takes MANY years of small steps to get there. TEA folks want it NOW, so they will be opposed by most, because that is unrealistic and would hurt Millions of Americans.
As there isn't any actual leadership, there is no unified vision other than Taxed Enough Already - we don't give a rip who we have to hurt; we are only thinking of not paying any more taxes.
That's the TEA party's Achilles' Heel in my opinion. There are many TEA folks I've personally talked to, who are younger folks who want to see Social Security shut down so they won't have to pay taxes for it, especially since they don't believe it will be there for them. Which is why I carp on that so much, because millions of elderly do need that Social Security insurance policy that they've paid the premiumns [the tax] for over 40 years of their working lives.
So the idea of the TEA party is interesting, but not developed enough where I'd join it, because given the hostility I've found, the younger folks there would let granny starve so they could pay less tax. As a Christian, I cannot support such a view.
Thanks for sharing Glenn Beck's video.
Mon, May 19, 2014 6:19pm
Thanks for at least viewing the video with an open mind...that's how dialogue occurs and solutions are possible.
As I said before, no one in leadership with the Tea Party favors touching S.S. except for those 55+ IF they choose to opt out. I'm sure some supporters (especially in Slower Lower) have some different opinions than those actually making the decisions.
AND, NO ONE is trying to "kill granny"...not even Paul Ryan ;)
There's also no way I'd want S.S. touched for those at retirement age or above (that would completely screw over my own parents)
Mike from Delaware
Tue, May 20, 2014 8:08am
EarlGrey: I believe though that a lack of leadership is what will keep the TEA party from being able to do more, because it means different things to different people, with the two unifying things of : No Taxes and Anyone but Obama.
The movement makes me think of someone trying to hear cats. They need a leader to refine and make solid points of what they want to accomplish other than NO taxes [which in the near future is not reasonable] and anyone but Obama or Hillary.
Newt Gingrich did that Contract with America and that sort of thing would help the TEA party. This is why I still believe the TEA party should be its OWN third party so they can have their own platform and not have to battle with "Mainstream" Republicans. Right now they are trying to take over the GOP, so they are a splinter group, better be their own masters in their own party. Look how far Ross Perot got doing that.
Mike from Delaware
Tue, May 20, 2014 10:18am
should trying to herd cats.
Tue, May 20, 2014 11:50am
Mike: I think that it’s actually good that there is no “official” leader of the Tea Party…the movement is about going back to the Constitution and not about following one leader.
Today’s Tea Party started off as a protest against government’s abuse of taxpayer’s money and the refusal of government to reign in its insane amounts of spending/debt. The issue most Tea Partiers agree upon is that our government cannot continue to spend as if there’s no tomorrow. I am concerned for your generation (my parents are in that group), but I am even more concerned about this government placing a huge debt upon the next generation (my kids). 0bama isn’t the only one responsible for this problem…both Bushs, Clinton, Carter, Nixon, etc. also hold responsibility for starting this downward spiral. The Tea Party isn’t just against 0bama and Hillary…they are also against any more Bushs (Jeb).
You like Big Government and I don’t…we will simply have to agree to disagree on that one.
“Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”~Acton
I disagree that the Tea Party needs to go Third Party...compare the core values of G.O.P. establishment Republicans and Tea Party representatives and tell me which ones look more like the party of Abe Lincoln. The establishment G.O.P. Republicans of today are going the way of the Whig Party (into the dust-bowl of history).
Mike from Delaware
Tue, May 20, 2014 3:40pm
EarlGrey: Sure I'd like a smaller government, but we just can't say hokus pokus and poof we have a smaller government.
I agree that having a smaller leaner government isn't a bad idea, but as you said, many Presidents AND Congress on both sides of the isle helped to make the government what it is today, so it will take many years to reverse that.
As I mentioned earlier, we simply can't just stop unemployment or welfare until we've trained those folks with new skills so they can get a job. You and I both know that the TEA party would oppose that. So these folks stay on the dole.
One thing that could be done would be to require these folks to do some work for the local community each week while collecting their check. America should have the cleanest streets, parks, cities, etc, in the world.
Problem is no willingness by the TEA party to solve the problems causing all those folks to be unemployed [most are not lazy, just unskilled]. The TEA party simply wants to cut the programs and say too bad so sad for you, starve, we don't care, we've got ours. That's not a solution.
That's why the TEA party needs someone with a vision for how to fix these things so we can eventually end all those folks sitting home on Welfare and Unemployment.
The TEA party could be a real catalyst for change, but without a real vision of other than no taxes, they won't come close.
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