I subscribe to The Sentinel, the black newspaper...
library. You should see Candy's ad! It says, "Hold Fast The Dreams..."
I guess it refers to black history month and MLK's dream speech.
What flim flam and hypocrisy. It's emblematic of the board's and administration's effort to look like idealists to the world while they act like brigands behind the scenes. lee
See at the end of this post the shocking revelation just in from the Candy Ribbet Ribbet diplomatic pouch sent by a South Tampa plant who sees all and tells all to Casting-room-couch. lee
Hurrah, Minions of the Light. Look at the opponents listed on the
This is the rising of the Age of Aquarius. The planets have aligned in our favor, and Candy, we pray to Zeus and Hera, not to mention Neptune and all those underwater gods, to watch over these challengers to the ROSSAC gang of board thugs and to make the challengers' paths smooth.
The way Candy has behaved on the School Board for sixteen mortal years presents a most apt target to aim at for replacement.
Otherwise, the 2010 elections install her for four more miserable years of sneers, putdowns, tricks, and disgraces of the office she has inhabited too long.
Everybody knows that Candy's husband, an attorney and maybe a judge, divorced her. I have heard that he sang in a gay glee club in Sarasota and thence declared himself gay, saying that he had "never been happier" after coming out. My take: I suspect that being married to Candy would make any man rethink his sexual orientation.
Candy lives in District 2's
If you look at the map of District 2, you see that there are also in Candy's district Gibsonton, Palm River, Progress Village, a corner of Brandon, Wimauma, River View, and Oh, my God!
There is a lot of James Agee Let-Us-Now-Praise-Famous-Men elements in these districts Candy eschews.
If I were Candy's opponent, I would make contact with the born-again ministers in these forlorn areas and ask them to let me use their social halls after church service to talk to the people about the education of their children. Just because they are poor does not mean that they are not concerned about the children's education.
The new candidate could also explore what the personality of their current board representative is and how she thinks she's above doing anything for anybody who does not live in hoity toity
I'd show up in the grocery parking lots and hand our my leaflets and say, "I'm Joe Every Man, and I am running as your school board member to replace Candy Olson in District 2. In her sixteen years on the board, Ms. Olson has never paid these neighborhoods any attention. She has not done a thing for you and your children and grandchildren who go to school here. Incumbent. Olson is interested only in representing the children of well-off people that live in
Candy doesn't want it known that she has all these down-and-out poor constituents, minions of the 45 million who don't have health care, in her bailiwick.
She avoids this information with her nose in the air. She never mentions any section of her district except La-de-dah
Does the record, in fact, show that Candy ever campaigned in any district except
Candy has her
I am pondering wearing a pair of the more outré Martha Mitchell specimens from my Manola Blanick collection and leafleting Candy's campaign send-off this year in the garden-club parking lot.
My old Mercedes will be the only car over a year old there. All of the x-chromosome snoots' cars will be late models bought by their husbands. Many have departed this parking lot of late-model posh cars when their husbands discovered they needed to hook up with an office intern of 18 or 19, a girl closer to the breadwinner's age.
Then these women will clerk in Dillards and drive rust bukets like the rest of us.
With my Manolas I will wear a Sears Roebuck polyester frock off the rack with my best Minnie Pearl chapeau that will have the price tag hanging off it: $3.99 marked down from $4.99. Those South Tampa Garden Club snoots who attend Candy's 17th debut will be pea green with envy when they see a woman with so much fashion éclat leafleting them in the garden-club parking lot. The flyers will tell them to dump Candy because her divorce made her have to sell her house to divvy up the money with her now-gay former husband. Candy has had to move into a condo. Condos aren't chic in South Tampa. It's the other side of the tracks. The people there can be mighty condescending to those who live in condos. How do I know this? I lived in South Tampa for twenty years after my husband's company opened a branch in Tampa. Our children went to Grady, Coleman, and Plant. So I know the phylum Beach Parkias backwards and forwards.
Who is Candy's challenger? Mark this down, Minions of the Light. It's no other than Emmet Gonzalo Negrete.
Fan me, Beulah. I am about to swoon.
Emmet Gonzalo Negrete: WHAT A THRILL TO HAVE SUCH AN ALLUSIVE NAME ON THE LIST OF BOARD CANDIDATES.
Isn't that middle name, "Gonzalo," Hispanic? For sure it is. "Gonzalo" will be a big hit in
Heck, "Gonzalo"may even be Castilian Spanish. Emmet's forebears may go back to the Punic War in Spain during 2 B.C. Or maybe they started a little later with Queen Isabella as forebear; her forebears included members of the royal families of Portugal, Sicily, France, and England.
And listen to this: Queen Isabella was a blonde with blue eyes. Wouldn't that just torque those
America's melting pot, etc.
Tom Gonzales, the Janus-faced board attorney, would just die of envy if Emmet is high Castilian. Tom lives in
Ponder "Negrete." That's a French wine. I swear it is. I saw it from the tour bus in
Emmet is international. Oh, the sophistication and glamour of that. OLE! My, my, the éclat of that status! Candy will just waste away from envy. She and her buddy I'm-Not-an-Ybor-City-Dark-Complected-Hispanic Gonzalez will be fit to be tied.
"Emmet" puzzles. That sounds like Candy's opponent may be an intellectual eclectic whose witty mother when she named him threw in "Emmet" to put people off the scent of his real heritage. My Lord. He may even be a closet intellectual who reads Proust, Thucydides, and the National Inquirer. The last is the only oeuvre that Candy knows by heart. She thinks the other two names are those of fellows who live in
When my husband was at the
Emmet's good. "Emmet" gets the stock-car race afincionados votes. It will also appeal to bigots of all stripes.
Do you think Emmet wears a pince nez, folks? Pray that he does. Candy would die of jealousy. She'd just fall over and faint from the green-eyed monster's biting her in her envy gland. Let's supplicate Athena, the patron goddess of Classical
For a guy with an postal ---11 zip code, a Hispanic middle name, a French surname, and a pedestrian first name to run against a
Let's pray that Emmet is handsome. Is it too late for him to do a Cosmo centerfold with one of his election flyers covering the strategic area of the pudendum?
That pose will contrast nicely with Candy's forlorn dowager persona. Everybody knows that Candy is not a beauty. She's not as ugly as a toad. I didn't say that she was. But she has a toad-like aura. To say so confirms basic anatomy and physiology protocols.
Candy doesn't doesn't do frog calls that I know of--or at least I have not heard her emit the template frog sound "Ribbet Ribbet"from the board podium yet.
But my intuition tells me she could do frog burps.
Cosmetology semiotics tells us that any woman with the improbable tint of blonde hair that Candy affects could in a pinch make a convincing call that replicated that of a frog. Ribbet, Ribbet.
If Emmet is homely, so be it. Being ugly never slowed Henry Kissinger down. One abiding tenet of sexism is that it's ok for men to be ugly but fatal for women.
Now we get down to business and talk battle plans for Emmet aka Gonzalo, the Cute, the putative Ybor boy of the hour. He must beat the beJesus out of Candy.
Let's plan. Put your head into this situation and offer advice.
Emmet can't get voters to listen to all of Candy's flaws. That would take all night. But here are three he can explore observed by this faithful attendee of school-board summits. I have more--lots more-- if he wants to pick from an expansive variety.
1. Candy's hatred of teachers must get emphasis. My first memory of monitoring the school board meetings was Candy's and Elia's sitting next to each other and putting their heads together to smirk over any aspersion and defeat of teachers or teachers' concerns. They won't give teachers and students a special slot on the board agenda to make teachers and students know they are welcome to come to board meetings and have the dignity of a special slot on the agenda to share their thoughts. Board members and ROSSAC denizens despise teachers and fear them but can't say so out loud because without teachers and their students there would be no schools. The ROSSAC think tank would be a ghost town. Without teachers and students, no tax money would pour over the transom at ROSSAC for the C-student administration to waste and gad about town assuming the importance of people in control of a whole lot of money.
Candy is one of those creatures who will throw her lot in with extant power people no matter who they are. If Hitler had become school-board superintendent, Candy would be his chum and learn to goose step expertly. Surely Ms. Elia is not too dumb to have ascertained that fact. Maybe she is. She is so needy of approval that she probably is not objective and will take ersatz approval in a pinch.
Ms. Elia's elevation to superintendent did not come from credentials and experience but from ROSSAC incestuous politics. The board wanted an in-house candidate for superintendent, someone who would condone their flaccid performance on the board and not ask them to do anything as an outside, qualified superintendent candidate might do.
So the board did away with the doctorate requirement and descended to Ms. Elia's master's degree. The duplicitous rascals then ran a $35,000 nation-wide ad billed to the taxpayers to cover their asses for putative equal opportunity when they intended all along to appoint La Elia because the probably unspoken but clearly understood deal was that she wouldn't disturb their little social club that endowed these losers with the personae of people who cared about education. Two of them don't even have a college degree. One has a "ED.D., clearly bought and paid for. They also get paid $9,000 more than beginning teachers, many of whom have to work a second job to make ends meet.
The teachers do real work. They earn their meager pay. The board members mess around and dither about tremendous trifles and avoid any tough issues. If they stepped up to the plate and dealt with a challenging issue such as the recent question about equitable allocation of religious holidays, there would be a thunderclap over ROSSAC.
What the pusillanimous board did in that religious-holiday meeting was shuck and jive and bob and weave to run out the clock. Their cowardice makes you want to puke.
In reading the folder of candidate applications for the supervisor slot over two years ago when Elia ascended the throne of the superintendency, one notes that Elia was the least qualified of the applicants. Her experience was all in-house. and it was botched stuff. The division she headed did not see a real-estate scam ongoing under her nose that a SPTimes reporter walked in off the street and spotted. She overbuilt classrooms too in a second wretched administrative error so that she had to displace children and upset communities to coincide with the boundary changes needed to fix that problem after she got to be supervisor. No board member questioned or rebuked her, so lax are they in serving the tax payers and schools instead of Ms. Elia and the ROSSAC troops.
I have never seen so many parents as poured into the board room to protest those irrational boundary changes.
The board routinely gives the voters the shaft in a contest with Ms. Elia.
Ms. Olson was particularly sycophantic recently in saying what a bargain the schools got in Ms. Elia's $300,000 salary, $47,000 stolen as a "bonus" from teachers' work to raise student scores.
Compare Elia's unjustified salary to the U.S. President's $400,000 and House members' and senators' $147,000. That bloated $300,000 is a bargain for
No it's a rip-off that the board condones and that taxpayers cough up without knowing that they are doing so. Emmet should tell the poor people out in the areas that Candy neglects the teachers' first-year salary, that the board's exceeds the teachers', and that the superintendent's haul beats the President's and Congress's pay.
People don't know these outrageous rapes of tax money for greedy board members and administrators.
Rapacious career education administration bureaucrats country wide have a bloated salary scam going to rip off taxpayers. They cite each other's inflated pay to up their own demands into the stratosphere of uncalled-for wages that don't coincide with their education and smarts. A school board that had the intellect of Daffy Duck would stop that scam by offering a reasonable salary that harmonizes with the teachers' pay.
Believe me: candidates would come. In fact some would come with solid degrees and impressive experience to apply for the superintendent job if they got assurances that they could emphasize scholarship to prepare students for a competitive world. These paragons would make no deals explicit or implicit with the board members to continue the latter's slothful performances on the board.
Not every school administrator who wants to be a superintenedent is a glutton. Some are interested in helping children to learn and to achieve.
I aver that every candidate in the applicant pool that competed for the superintendent's job had better bona fides than Ms. Elia.
What they did not have was a sub
Campaign point 2:
Candy does not believe in upholding the law. First of all, she does not believe in citizens' having free-speech rights when they come to address the board. She sneers at those of us who do brook this disdain to address the board. Candy looks bad enough when she's not sneering. When she sneers, its like that Greek Medusa harpy with all those snakes as hair is one of the board members.
Le Olson and lawyer Tom Gonzalez recently cooked up a little board buck and wing pas de deux about the bullying law, HB 669. The language of the bill plainly says that students and staff and teachers all merit coverage. But the board and Ms. Elia don't want teachers covered because that means teachers and staff could invoke the bullying law for the board's and Ms. Elia's using the Abu Ghraib Professional Standards office to trap them into job-threatening cooked-up charges. Ms. Olson sings the praises of the Abu Ghraib director Linda Kipley, she of the see-through plastic high heels. Teachers hate Ms. Kipley--not for her shoes but for her cooperation with Ms. Elia and other administration sadists to use the Professional Standards office to trap and punish teachers and terrify them with the loss of their jobs.
Ms. Olson and Le Gonzalez choreographed off stage in secret a scenario for Gonzalez to declare that the bullying bill did not cover teachers so they could not use the law as a defense against false Professional Standards charges.
The language of the law makes a lie of Mr. Gonzalez's "expert" opinion.
The board submitted to Secretary of Education Smith a false promise cooked up by Elia and Gonzalez, one infers, to cover both students and staff in the submission to Education Secretary Smith. Isn't that what one calls a whopper? They are now fighting bullying's covering teachers and staff even though other counties' teachers have used the bill to protect themselves from bullying.
It is well for a new candidate for the board to keep in mind that the board and administration never hesitate to lie when it comes to concealing their management skullduggery.
Anybody who has doubts about this grungy technique should request the boxes of documents on the Irwin Whistleblower case from the Community Affairs office. The Erwin saga occurred in the early nineties, and the residual of that attempt to destroy Mr. Erwin for outing graft and theft in the administration is still in the ROSSAC DNA.
Mr. Gonzalez's villainous contribution to injure Erwin for reporting crime and graft in the schools was this: he opened a for-show investigation when the heat was on finally after the press tardily woke up to the situation; then he shut it down when its investigators discovered and reported that its investigation had uncovered only efforts to make Mr. Erwin look like a crazy whacko who was hallucinating about the theft and graft. That Dr. Lennard led the campaign to undo Mr. Erwin by proving him crazy instead of investigating the charges says to an average person that the upper administration and board were getting graft and didn't want Mr. Erwin's revelations to cut it off.
Ms. Candy was on the job in the board then. She was vicious to Mr. Erwin when he came to the board for help. God knows which board members got graft. If I did an eeny, meeny, miney, Moe to answer that question, I would have to guess that my mother told me to pick Candy.
When I first heard the rumor about Ms. Olson's former husband's coming out of the closet, I thought someone had made it up as a joke. There is one rumor about Candy that I would like the truth about. I sense it not to be a joke.
Rumor says that Ms. Olson has gotten jobs for people such as one woman said to be an exotic dancer who intervened with the police to scotch a DWI for a member of Olson's family. The job was said to be teaching. If that is so, it's shockingly irresponsible. It's useless to ask Candy to corroborate or deny this rumor. She thinks she is above being questioned.
In the Erwin case, Board Member Olson knew what was going on and did nothing to get to the bottom of the crime. In fact, I understand she greeted Mr. Erwin with a hostile, "You had better have proof of your accusations!" I find that inhumane and tolerant of stealing and graft in the schools by a board member. Somebody has to replace her for the good of the community.
After Mr. Erwin won his Whistleblower suit against the school board, the board fired nobody. Lennard should have got the sack for starters along with his sidekick Dr. Hamilton. I infer they were the lead harassers of Mr. Erwin as well as probable graft takers.
But the board and other culprits hunkered down and rode out the storm and evaded responsibility because nobody in public life or any private citizens demanded a trial and justice. The taxpayers paid Tom Gonzalez's firm $34,000 dollars for losing the case and Mr. Erwin a $165,000 settlement. When Gonzalez and his cohort complained about the size of the Erwin settlement to the judge, His Honor retorted that it would have been more had Mr. Erwin had a better attorney.
The eager immersion in all the foul and ubiquitous misbehavior of the board and administration nailed down Tom Gonzalez's cement-secure seat as board attorney. The board sensed he was possessed of conveniently flexible ethics and would be their legal tool when it came to twisting the law to fit their despicable behavior.
The logic was also, I believe, that the board did not dare fire him because he knew too much and might write a tell-all book called Castilian Tom Comes of Age and Lives To Make Big Money off the Taxpayers in Hillsborough County's School Administration Badlands. And the board doesn't object to paying him $275,000 of tax money while he moonlights at USF to squeeze out $14,000 more citizen tax loot last year. He filches over $300,000 a year in tax money while the board snoozes.
A third issue an opponent could use against La Candy is her ignorance about democracy. She took the oath of office to uphold the laws and didn't know the laws and the Constitution from a hole in the ground. She routinely sneers at citizens who go up to address the board. I think she may have made a few derisive frog noises too but can't be sure.
I shall have to sit closer to the front to hear any low-level Ribbet, Ribbets.
Ms. Olson demonstrated this ignorance of the laws she is supposed to uphold and an appalling ignorance of how a democracy works with elected representatives when April Griffin first came on the board and tried to do something brave by asking that the no-bid contract of a former administrator come off the consent-agenda conveyor belt for discussion.
The non-competitive hires by the administration are just one more way both board and administration rip off taxpayers by giving contracts to buddies without competition, not to the lowest and most competent bidder.
Attorney Gonzalez approves this process since he got his job from Dr. Lennard on a handshake with no equal-opportunity protocols observed. Mr. Gonzalez is usually noninvolved in board business; he pares his nails, contemplates eternity, and occasionally eats chips and drinks soda pop during board business. My mother would say he was raised in a barn despite his claim of Castilian Spanish origins.
But Mr. Gonzalez comes alive if someone utters the word "no-bid." He booms a request to the chair to speak and then waxes rhapsodic about the pristine legality of the no-bid process and cites law, made up or twisted is my gloss, hence, his favorite kind of law, to legitimize the no-bid contracts.
The request of
That Olson lacks rhetorical flair despite her assertion that she reads widely and deeply gets no confirmation from such stale board pronouncements. We are talking undistinguished performance on the Stanford Binet here.
Olson and Kurdell's opposition when Griffin called for something to come off the agenda for discussion reveals both far gone in blind obedience to Ms. Elia's directives and unconcerned about the rights of the taxpayers to the best deal the board can broker in such transactions. Their response shows as well that they don't know how democratic officials are supposed to conduct themselves in office as representatives of the people who elected them, not as automaton lackeys of a superintendent and cheerleaders for the staff that does whatever Elia tells its members to do, legal or illegal. Sadly,
Griffin is so gutless that since that attack by Kurdell and Olson, she has morphed into a mute android for Ms. Elia.
I hope Le Emmet Gonzalo Negrete will have the courage to ask Candy in a public forum why a board member has no right to ask for something to come off the written-in-stone rolling consent agenda for public discussion. And I hope, when elected, he promises voters to ask for anything he finds questionable to come off the consent agenda for discussion and to engage in a knock-down-drag-out board fight if needed. I hope as well he has enough sense as
I understand the opponent of Ms. Olson, Emmet Gonzalo Negrete, has a good grasp of the statistical flim flam in the No Child Left Behind figures. Good we want to hear about this subject. People who vote for the school board need all the data they can get on government misbehavior.
If there is a NCLB scramble about the truth of statistics, this would be coincident with the board and administration’s policy of lying when they think they can get away with it.
Candidate Negrete should bring these data forward, especially when he goes to the newspaper editorial endorsement interview.
Those newspaper endorsement people are pompous and supercilious, but a candidate can convert them if he has his facts down cold and speaks with steely conviction.
And while Negrete is debating Candy and close enough to hear her clearly, I want him to send me by diplomatic pouch confirmation that Candy does indeed emit frog noises be that the case.
Emmet must report pronto on any “Ribbet! Ribbet!” that he picks up from La Candy’s area.