Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Public Affairs Office Gets Negative PR

From: Anonymous []
Sent: Wednesday, December 17, 2008 8:57 PM
Subject: [Lee Drury De Cesare's Casting-Room Couch] New comment on Public Information Request: You Can All Do the Sam....

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Public Information Request: You Can All Do the Sam...":

This Linda Cobbe sounds like an ass kisser. What a weasel to have a job defending unethical people. The fact that the school district has to employ people like that to do PR for the schools is proof that things are not run well. When things are running well and ethically, you don't need PR to put a spin on everything. Taxpayers should demand the dismantling of the Public Relations Office in the school district. What good is it? Just let reporters call up employees and ask questions and let honest answers come out. If things are well run and above board there should be no fear of this.

Publish this comment.

Reject this comment.

Moderate comments for this blog.

Posted by Anonymous to Lee Drury De Cesare's Casting-Room Couch at 5:56 PM
You make a valid point. The very existence of Public Information departments testifies to the need to pretty up the skullduggery of the people inside who do the dirty deeds that they want disguised.
I wouldn’t say Linda is an ass kisser by nature. She will smart-mouth me every once in a while, but if she wants to keep her job, she knows not to be sassy to the administrative core that run things. Steve Hegerty, the former SPT reporter that got the job Linda should have gotten, is more the toady I sense. Linda is competent and can punctuate, two rarities in ROSSAC, a place that buddies and sycophants of the superintendent throng. Punctuation is one of the great mysteries to the ROSSAC denizens. Only the board's ignorance of Roberts Rules trumps comma ignorance in that hellhole of miasmic stupidity.

But to say people are asskissers in ROSSAC is to acknowledge that they are all that way because they are terrified of losing their jobs. They shuck dignity when they enter the ROSSAC realm. My sense is that Ms. Elia’s core insecurities make her need people to bow down to her more than is usual for the average dictator. She does not allow disagreement when she decides on something, not even from her putative bosses, the board.

I hoped Steve Gorham would beat Kurdell because I thought he had the right stuff to take on Elia. And if the other six dwarfs saw that it could be done, they would make Steve their leader and Elia’s days would be numbered. There is simply no leader on the board now. I had hopes for Valdes and Griffin, but they have turned out to be pusillanimous ditzes most of the time who mistake themselves for board Joans of Arc. They wouldn’t even answer my email when I asked them to make a place on the board agenda for teachers and students. So if teachers come to a meeting—and that is very rare, they must address the board in the citizen-comment slot. That situation shows no respect for the value and dignity of the teachers.

I wish we could question people directly about school matters. But now, you won’t get an answer from anybody in the administration if you email that person with a question. The recipient won’t bother to answer you. You must run your query through Public Affairs so that its answer can be modified to an innocuous and even lying blurb.

But the great thing is that there is the Public Information Sunshine Law in Florida. Public outfits like school boards must yield anything written down or even in email to the citizen who asks for it. I would like to kiss the feet of the legislator who got this law on the books. That legislator gave the citizens of Florida a great gift if they will use it to hold public entities’ feet to the fire. The odd thing is that so many people think doing so is somehow impudent. I can’t figure that out.

When I remarked to a buddy who is in the school system that my read on the ROSSAC retinue was that they all hated me, he said, “You might be surprised. Many of them are probably glad to hear you give Elia and the board hell. It’s a vicarious pleasure for them because they don’t dare do it themselves.”

The savvy of my readers is a source of satisfaction to me. My blog readers fill the place of the other college faculty members I had to spar with until I retired. I have always liked to hang out with smart people. You can learn so much from them.lee


Anonymous said...

You are right. I bet most the ROSSAC people are thrilled with your blog, because they all hate Elia. When she was hired she went around to shake all their hands so she could rub it in their faces that she is now their boss. She is probably the most hated person in Hillsborough County. Everyone talks about her behind her back, because nobody likes her. Very unprofessional woman with a potty mouth.

Vox Populi said...

This just made me laugh so hard.

I have some commas lying around I'd like to share with ms. elia.

Her igorance makes her mean, as well.

Pity the children.