We've all heard the old story about making lemonade from lemons; Mayor Marty has built his entire administration around the artful manipulation of the media. Today we saw yet another example of the city spin-meisters mixing up a fresh batch of that refreshing summer drink and the Albuquerque media gulping it down.
We've got to admit it's a great storyline... immigrant son rises to head the agency that his father worked for as a janitor. We were even treated to the obligatory "only in America" quote. Yesterday, the city announced that the city's chief public safety officer Nick Bakas, would be taking over the reins at the Albuquerque Sunport.
The Journal jumped on the storyline (ABQ Journal - Subscription Required) and a glowing article about the immigrant son led readers to believe exactly what the city wanted you to believe... that the move was a promotion for Mr. Bakas. Our Eyes were buzzing almost before the presses stopped running.
The Eyes have it that the move of Mr. Bakas from Deputy Chief Administrator in charge of public safety to director of aviation is a result of some dissatisfaction with his tenure as chief of chiefs. We've told you of his role in the Mark Shepherd hiring and The Eyes are saying that he played a role in the firing of officer Ben Kirby who according to our Eyes is to be re-hired because he was improperly let go. A re-hire more than likely means that the city will be paying officer Kirby some money as well.
No matter how you characterize it, the move can't be seen as anything better than a lateral move. In fact, Mr. Bakas goes from a high profile position running two public safety related agencies to an almost no profile job running an agency in a field in which he has absolutely no experience.
According to the Journal's lemonade piece "Chávez said Bakas will continue to have a role in emergency management and anti-terrorism issues. It's unclear if he will be replaced as chief public safety officer." (Subscription Required) Our Eyes beg to differ telling us that retired APD Captain Rob Debuck has been tapped to replace the outgoing Bakas. We'll see what develops as we have heard Debuck's name floated for the Deputy Director position currently held by former Sheriff Joe Bowditch.
We don't know how this will end up going down. But we've got a suggestion... perhaps it would be a good idea to eliminate both positions and save Albuquerque taxpayers some money. Or maybe the approximately $200,000 could be used for officer recruitment and retention... Maybe we'd end up with some lemonade after all.
The Piercing Truth
This is right from the dictionary and seems to describe Albuquerque, Berry and Schultz. Fascism (f ash ,izem) noun An authoritarian right wing system of government and/or social organization. (in general use) extreme right wing, authoritarian, chauvinistic and/or intolerant views or practices. Fascism tends to include a belief in the supremacy of one group over another, national, ethnic, especially social strata or monetarily; a contempt for democracy, an insistence on obedience to a powerful leader, and a strong demagogic approach. Compliments of one of our Eyes