By Doug Porter
We could have generated at huge list. It’d probably look more like a phone book (remember those?), so the elves decided to limit this list to individuals who’s graced the pages of the San Diego Free Press over the past year.
And then we had to pare it down to a dozen. So many bad boys & girls, so little time…
Several individuals were selected as representatives of organizations that have done bad deeds locally in the past year. Others will need no introduction. They all deserve coal and sticks as our version of the jolly man (he wears a red suit for a reason) makes his rounds.
Jerry Sanders, former mayor, former police chief, currently CEO of the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce.
His deeds on behalf of greed and avarice also merit an autographed copy of Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged.
Whether it was housing for the poor, clean air for children in the barrio or decent wages for working people, Jerry Sanders was the man in 2014 leading the effort to squelch those aspirations.
Santa tried to deliver Jerry’s presents early this year, but was turned away by security at the Chamber of Commerce offices in downtown San Diego.
Kevin Faulconer, currently Mayor of San Diego.
While the mayor looks jolly enough, Santa wasn’t fooled by those daily press conferences brimming with platitudes about good deeds. He knows the mayor is just the front man for Jerry Sanders.
Santa also tried to visit Kevin at work earlier this month. Hizzoner’s security minions almost wouldn’t let the bag of coal and sticks into the building, but a little elfin magic thwarted that ploy.
Jan Goldsmith, City Attorney and keeper of the city’s dirty deeds list.
Santa knows it’s Goldsmith’s job to keep the checks and balances of the legal system unbalanced, lest those pesky citizen discover what really goes on at City Hall.
Goldsmith’s list of bad deeds for the past year is topped off by his office accusing a woman victimized by a sexual predator (who just happened to be wearing a police uniform) of trying to bribe her attacker with a pair of panties. Sure, his office walked this back once the media got wind of it, but, as far as Santa is concerned, intent was nine tenths of the bad boy list law.
Darrell Issa, Congressman and Grand Inquisitor for the Republican Party.
While gaining political points for one’s side goes with the territory of being Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Rep. Issa has crossed even Santa’s low threshold for politicians who lie. And for a guy who claims to be so concerned about the taxpayers, Issa sure was good at wasting money.
While spending tens of millions of tax dollars on investigations, taking up thousands of column inches of articles and hundreds of hours of television, Darrell Issa’s chairmanship is without accomplishment. His primary targets – Benghazi, “Fast and Furious,” the IRS, Solyndra — have all led to dead ends. Nearly every one of Issa’s investigations continues to linger on in hearing after hearing or simply exist in a purgatory, the chairman never acknowledging that no evidence existed for charges he leveled in the media.
Bonnie Dumanis, District Attorney for San Diego County.
What can you say? It was a bad year for Ms. Dumanis. Even the bad boys at UT-San Diego had to admit she carried some “baggage” in their endorsement of her 2014 run for re-election.
There are so many choices here in the bad deeds department it’s hard to choose. As far as the press is concerned, there’s smoke but no fire. But Santa knows better. Having lost out on the endorsement of iconic do-gooder Father Joe, Ms. Bonnie’s campaign called him out as a liar. And it goes downhill from there: pettiness, scandal and malfeasance in her choices as a protector of the people all grace the list of her transgressions this past year.
Phil Pace, owner of Phil’s BBQ.
He makes the SDFP/Santa list this year as the embodiment of the “small” businessman run amok.
Whether it’s raising money for Carl DeMaio or playing the victim for the Chamber of Commerce’s anti-minimum wage campaign, Phil was always available to do the wrong thing. His $10,000 contribution to the Small Business Coalition was one of two actually coming from small businesses.
Santa’s leaving a fire-proof Bad Boy Certificate for Mr. Pace, lest he use the coal and sticks to further cut corners in his enterprises.
Dougie Manchester, publisher UT-San Diego. Because.
Carl DeMaio, failed candidate for office. We don’t have room for a book here. So the elves suggested this passage from SDFP coverage of his congressional campaign this past fall:
Taking a page from the playbook once used by Gov. Pete Wilson, GOP candidate Carl DeMaio announced his five weird tricks for better border security yesterday.
“From illegal immigration to terrorism and Ebola, the reasons for securing our nation’s border have never been more clear,” he told a small group of reporters at a campaign headquarters press conference.
Reince Priebus, the chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC) whipped up the party base on the immigration issue via conference call hosted by TheTeaParty.net on Monday evening. DeMaio beat him to the punch by a few hours, accusing incumbent Scott Peters of being a “rubber stamp” for the failed policies policy of the Obama administration.
There was nothing new in the GOP challenger’s plan, but at least it didn’t show up as plagiarized on any internet searches. It was all about further militarizing the border (build the damn fence) and minimizing the legal process for migrants caught up in the system. Oh, and drones, Lots of drones. Maybe he can come with an app while he’s at it.
Chris Wahl, President Southwest Strategies. Normally we wouldn’t bother with those who carry water for the forces of evil, but given the vagaries surrounding the Ship Repair Association (SRA) and their campaign against the Barrio Logan Community Plan, somebody had to make the cut.
And, given his shouting match with SDFPF editorial board member Brent Beltran during that campaign, we felt obligated to include Mr. Wahl. The three big lies used by that campaign to deceive voters will stand as a monument to just how low corporate shills will sink.
Bill Horn, County Supervisor.
He’s everything Santa wouldn’t want in a public servant.
His relationships with developers and inflammatory rhetoric have often been seen as, shall we say, controversial. But this year’s bag of coal and sticks is based on the transactions exposed during his re-election campaign whereby interest on escrow monies from his real estate business were used to fund a mysterious foundation supposedly funding missionaries.
Matthew Tucker, CEO of the North County Transit District.
He makes the list as the embodiment of everything wrong with quasi-public agencies in San Diego. You have to give him credit, since he’s still on the job despite an ever-growing list of allegations about his management of contracts and the way employees are treated.
inewsource/KPBS spent much of 2014 digging into Tucker’s dealings which started getting scrutiny following safety issues with the brakes on Sprinter trains. Those stories were read with great interest by Santa and his elves.
Sam Abed, Mayor of Escondido.
You are, of course, welcome to add your suggestions for Santa’s Bad Boys & Girls list in the comments below. The elves have asked that you avoid using any dirty words in your comments as they are sensitive about such things.
On This Day:1959 – Chuck Berry was arrested for transporting a minor across a state line for an immoral purpose. 1972 – The Pittsburgh Steelers beat the Oakland Raiders 13-7 in an NFL playoff game on a last-second play that was dubbed the “Immaculate Reception.” Pittsburgh’s Franco Harris caught a deflected pass and ran it in for the winning touchdown. 2008 – WalMart Stores Inc., the nation’s largest employer, with 1.4 million “associates,” agreed to settle 63 wage and hour suits across the U.S., for a grand total of between $352 million and $640 million. It was accused of failure to pay overtime, requiring off-the-clock work, and failure to provide required meal and rest breaks (Some things never change.)
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