Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Federal Agents: Pittsburgh is a Cool Place to Be.

Times Union / AP: Paul Sakuma


Deputy Chief Paul Donaldson said between four and six FBI agents visited the Special Events and Personnel and Finance offices. He said they took records involving secondary employment, training and travel. The personnel office oversees payroll and other expenditures, and special events oversees officers working in uniform while off duty. (Trib, Harding & Bauder)

It doesn't seem directly related to the knapsacks contract in the news. For archival material on issues which can and have arisen involving police officer secondary employment and the assignment of special event details, see the Admiral: Part I, The Problem; Part II, The Solution; Part III, The Capitulation.

I am given to understand that some years after what is covered in "Capitulation" that aspects of the City's cost recovery and of the assignment of details were reformed -- but there could always be work-arounds or related issues.

UPDATE: Indeed, here is what I meant by "work-arounds": the Detail Mafia.

See also P-G, Silver, Navratil & Smydo; WTAE, AP.

ALSO: Officer selling swag with City logos. Why not? WTAE.


  1. Glad to see some housecleaning going on. I wish I could get some helpful FBI agents to take away all the piles of paper I've been hoarding out of the light of day.

    Here's to sunshine!

  2. Historically, these buildups of incriminating City paperwork have been addressed with tragic and wholly accidental fires.

  3. Apparently, hiring Matt H's to work in local politics is very fraught.

  4. "Confidence."


  5. You notice Luke had to drag in City Council and "politics" for the troubles?
    Where is the leadership? With the mayor, the chief and Huss?

  6. Why? Why does the Mayor still have confidence in this Chief, despite new revelations of improprieties after what must have been serious conversations denying any such? Why? Why?

  7. He stands by "his" chief. Why doesn't he stand by us?

    "Confidence" in Harper = utter lack of true concern for the people who rely on a Chief of Police to serve and protect them.

    "True concern" = being willing to bear some political cost and practice some adult responsibility for making sure we have a Chief who will uphold the standards that might save some lives.

    Standards that might have saved Ka'Sandra Wade's life.

  8. Did ya ever think maybe he knows more than all of you as to what is really going on

  9. Could he know something that would rationalize the business launch with subordinates from a phony address and the keeping secret of same even after revelations of grand jury proceedings?

  10. What he knows is that the Chief has enough on him to land his ass in jail too.

  11. The Mayor, the Chief and Huss should be ashamed! Snakes in the grass all! Can we get a comment please?

  12. @Anonymous of February 14 at 12:58 AM

    What do ya mean?

  13. @ Helen..whaddya think?

  14. An answer to Anonymous of February 14, 2013 at 12:58 AM (and maybe the Anon of Feb 15 11:54pm)

    Anon asked about Chief Harper and/or the Mayor: "Did ya ever think maybe he knows more than all of you as to what is really going on."

    Well, I wanted to give the Anon of the benefit of the doubt and hoped that they would contradict my first, worst jumpings-to-conclusions. But here's what I was afraid that Anon 12:58 meant, yet another tedious, toxic replay of so many other voices I've heard in real life, here in Pittsburgh and in Iraq and in communes and ashrams and in Fundamentalist Baptist churches - and in both U.S. Army and Occupy camps. Here is what I thought that Anon meant based on my own experience of Alpha-Wolf Power Worship along all conceivable stretches of all ideological spectrums:

    "That Important Person with Power and a Big Gun/Big Tank/Big Bomb/Big Mob/Big Money/Big Network or just plain Big Mean Mouth says they know something we don't know, so I/We will just trust Him/Her to break the rules we decided on together whenever They in Their worldly wise judgment decide that is best for all of Us. Because they put their lives on the line. Because they see the worst of humanity and know that "due process" is not enough to deal with Bad Stuff. (Because if I don't decide to believe that they must know better, then that means I should stand up and disagree and and put myself in the way of whatever big ugly pain they got to deal out.)"

    That is what so many of We the People so often sing in mighty choirs of Hail to the Chief - whatever Chief happens to be on top at the time, feeding them the crumbs of praise and little petty powers that "petty officers," under whatever title, then go out exercise out on the streets or courts or backrooms or corporate offices or City County Halls.

    Such Powers that Be and their lackey choirs, they always make some accurately valid points. Poverty and powerlessness do not equate with virtue or merit or compassion. Self-righteousness and love of power and corruption are omnipresent from bottom to top of any pyramid, bubbling from every human heart and mind, ready to boil over into extrajudicial punishment or self-enrichment at the expense of the less powerful on the rungs below whatever little or big niche in the hierarchy we cling to.

    But, as a veteran who acted as part of an "Alpha-Wolf" tribe, as one of those "keepers of the peace" in Iraq who witnessed the meaningless, mundane abuse and theft of unarmed men, women and children, as someone who has seen the end results of giving ANY men and women armed with the power of deadly force your permission to act with impunity and without meaningful consequence for brutality or negligence, as a supporter of Jordan Miles, as a woman who just lost a friend to blatant irresponsibility on the part of our own police force, I will tell you that the results are generally, pervasively heartbreaking.

    Bad stuff happens that can't ever be taken back.

    And history shows again and again that bad stuff escalates unless there is a concerted collective effort to set up some effective checks and balances.