Villegas Video, Awarding Incompetence, and Judge Lazarus' Latest Stupid Email
UPDATED: My colleague Lisa Rab obtained this video of Debra Villegas speaking with Plantation police officers about the Melissa Britt Lewis murder. It was taken in December 2009, after the Rothstein Ponzi scheme and the RRA law firm imploded. Make sure and read Rab's post. Villegas describes the law firm as a gossip pit full of "incestuous disgusting" people from from whom both she and Lewis were alienated. "They were always looking for something to bring her down, they try to bring each other down, they sit at lunch together everyday, ha ha, and when they get back, ... oh, it's disgusting," Villegas says. "Melissa let it get to her. ... She became withdrawn from her legal community. And she was criticized for that. Scott rode her ass all the time. Why aren't you building business? Why aren't you developing? Why aren't you coming to these events? Why aren't you this? Why aren't you that? She wasn't because she was like me. She didn't like these people. She didn't want to fraternize with all these incestuous disgusting people."
It's bizarro world in Broward County.
A disgraced former School Board member, Stephanie Kraft, is in the newspaper today talking about how up she was in ethics training before she was hit with felony bribery, unlawful compensation, and official misconduct charges.
A county commissioner under investigation by the same prosecutors, Stacy Ritter, is on this blog defending the acceptance of a golf cart from the same dirty developers, Bruce and Shawn Chait, who are involved in the Kraft criminal case.
Despite the evidence stacked up against it, Ashbritt is taking the Broward County School Board to court to try to settle auditors' findings that the firm gouged taxpayers out of $765,000 after Hurricane Wilma.And Maureen Dinnen, one of the School Board members who helped drive the board into financial crisis and $2 billion in debt with reckless construction spending, is being honored as "School Board Member of the Year" by something called "The Consortium of Florida Education Foundations."
Yes, Rome is burning, and they're handing each other awards. Last year, the same group gave Jim Notter the superintendent of the year award, which gives you an idea of its credibility.
What is the Consortium of Florida Education Foundations? Well, the Broward Education Foundation is a member, and it nominated Dinnen. Remember I wrote about the BEF on Friday, noting that its board is made up in part by school construction executives and fake ethics champion Roy Rogers. Dinnen also sits on that board.
Another member is the Florida Education Foundation, which is a nonprofit sponsored by AT&T, Macy's, and other companies to work with the state Department of Education and, of course, to hand out awards.
Under "news" on its website, it's all about the honors that the foundation bestows. Last December, the foundation, along with the state Department of Education, gave AT&T Florida President Marshal Criser something called the "Commissioner's Statewide Award of Distinction."
Let's see, AT&T gives the foundation money, and in return, AT&T receives a high-sounding honor. What else might AT&T want from our schools? The foundation is chaired by Alan Levy. He's a former chairman of the Broward Workshop, so he's experienced in using corporate money to try to influence government.
And let's not forget that it was Dinnen who took the reins of another dubious group, Floridians for Quality Education, which was backed by lobbyist Neil Sterling to try to find a way to get the public to continue to finance the school construction gravy train.
See, she earned her award after all.
Inside, see an email purportedly sent out by Broward County Judge Joel Lazarus that is not only anti-immigrant and overly political but incredibly stupid.
Remember that Lazarus was the guy who sent out the anti-Obama email on his county account as well. Here's one I just received in the mail anonymously:
Date: Monday, December 03, 2007 02:43PM
Subject: Three things to ponder....
2. The Constitution
3. The Ten Commandments
Is it just me, or does anyone else find it amazing that during the mad cow epidemic our government could track a single cow, born in Candada almost three years ago, right to the stall she slept in the state of Washington? And, they tracked her calves to their stalls. But they are unable to locate 11 million illegal aliens wandering around our country. Maybe we should give each of them a cow.
They keep talking about drafting a Constitution for Iraq. Why don't we just give them ours? It was written by a lot of really smart guys, it has worked for over 200 years, and we're not using it anymore.
The 10 COMMANDMENTS
The real reason that we can't have the Ten Commandments posted in a courthouse is this:
You cannot post "Thou Shalt Not Steal," "Thou Shalt Not Commit Adultery," and "Thou Shall Not Lie" in a building full of lawyers, judges, and politicians... It creates a hostile work environment.
Well, the third one, poorly executed as it is, has a little truth to it at least. UPDATED: As someone mentioned below, this is from Larry the Cable Guy, one of the few right-wing comics out there (and maybe the only one of them who can actually be funny; c'mon, you know Dennis Miller doesn't cut it).