Sunday, June 24, 2012

Ravi Response

So it took awhile, a couple of dictionary’s, a thesaurus and but I think I figured out what Ravi was saying in his comment.

Boil it all down and Ravi thinks I should delete from the blog my opinion that John Milgram is an asshole.

Ravi would also like me to apologize to John Milgram for calling him an asshole.

Let’s start with the apology.  Not going to happen.  I used to actually like John.  But my experience with him over the last 4 months has changed my opinion of him.  I now truly believe he is an asshole.

Best I can do Ravi is the following – with all due respect I think John Milgram’s actions at JJOKE make him an asshole in my humble opinion.

Now John’s not the first person I’ve called an asshole in my life and I am sure he will not be the last.

And to be fair I am sure there are plenty of people I interact with that believe I am an asshole . . . many of them are correct.

And judging from the folks that have told me how John has acted at the JOKE I’m not the only person that thinks John is an a**hole (is that better Ravi?).

Now as to the deletion on the blog I see no reason to delete my reference to John as an asshole.  It  was the whole point of the piece to present to people what John had done and let them decide for themselves whether John was an asshole or merely incompetent.

I specifically used that word to generate debate and it worked.

It got Ravi to send in his thoughts about John Milgram and gave me an opportunity to ask Ravi some questions before Tuesdays meeting (another meeting that Milgram has failed to post notice of in a timely fashion as required by the JOKE’s own rules).

So since Ravi is so dedicated to transparency and intelligent debate let’s see if he will answer the following questions, either on the blog (I’ll post anything Ravi writes, sans edits) or at the meeting Tuesday.

1)      Did the commission authorize Ellen Biben to work in New York City prior to the New York City office being opened?

2)      If yes why? And why wasn’t that authorization made public?

3)      If no will Ravi investigate how many days Biben actually worked in the JOKE’s Albany office and explain what she was doing the rest of the time?

It’s hard to restore integrity Ravi when the day to day head of the agency only shows up to work part of the time, most other state employees would be investigated for this behavior.

4)      Can you explain why Milgram and Biben fired 4 former lobby commission program staffers earning between $45K and $55k and replaced them with lawyers Biben formerly employed at the IG at six figure salaries in New York City?

5)      Who is doing their work? – I can answer that – less talented auditors making more money which begs the question who is doing the audits?

6)      Were those fired employees good and decent family people? And why didn’t Biben interview any of them before she decided to fire them?

7)      Was there firing necessary to free up budget room to hire Biben’s New York City friends?

8)      Why does the JOKE have a chief economist?

9)      What does a chief economist do?

10)   Why is all but one of the new hires in the New York City office making a six figure salary?

11)   Why does the New York City office need an assistant director of finance and administration making over $80k?

12)   Do you realize you have more chiefs than Indians?

13)   Why did JJOKE wait until after the effective date to hold a hearing on source of funding?

14)   Why were you the only commissioner to ask questions at that hearing?

15)   What is your position on your chairwomen’s failure to pay the parking meter?

16)   What is your position on the chairwomen’s nanny gate scandal?

17)   Do you believe the chairwomen should be registered on behalf of the District Attorneys Association as a lobbyist?

18)   Do you believe the District Attorney’s Association should be registered as a lobbyist?

19)   Did the chairwomen’s husband recommend or assist your most recently hired attorney to get her job with the JOKE?

20)   Did you know that Lori Donadio has told lobbyists that there is no policy for how late fee settlements are being imposed? And that Biben et al are making it up on the fly?

21)   Do you believe JJOKE has jurisdiction over legislators for actions that occurred prior to the establishment of JJOKE?

22)   Did you approve of Mr. Milgrams actions in asking the camera people to leave the last meeting?

23)   Do you think Mr. Milgram has done a good job as an interior decorator for JJOKE?

24)   Will you inquire regarding Ms. Biben’s travel expenses for travel between New York City (her home) and Albany (her office) prior to the New York City office being opened?

25)   What was the reason for opening a New York City office?

26)   If it was “to have a presence in New York City” why is it in a secure building where lobbyists and clients can not drop off or pick up forms?

27)   When will Milgram respond to the rest of my document requests?

28)   Does JJOKE plan on responding to the opinion requests I made in February?

29)   Did Biben even inform you of them?

30)   Do you know if Biben talked to anyone in the Cuomo administration about the Libous matter?

31)   Lastly do you think John Milgram has done a good job in representing JJOKE with the media?

32)   If yes why is JJOKE a laughingstock?

33)   Oh one more thing Ravi who do you think leaked the Libous 15 day letter to the Times Union?

I could go on and on and I might after Ravi responds but I think you get the point.  The JOKE has been a failure and it is the people running it that are to blame.  Maybe it’s time Ravi to stop trying to compliment everyone, get your head out of your (anatomical reference deleted) and start doing your job and ask some tough questions and tell the public the answers.

And in summation counselor, no I will not stop the personal attacks if I believe that is what it takes to change the direction of ethics enforcement in ALBANY.

As Ice-T said


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