Friday, March 21, 2008

Belmont Rocks...Bob Tuke, Not So Much

Posted By on Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 10:14 AM

click to enlarge 150px-BelmontBruins.png
Points of order today as we belatedly turn out attention to you, dear Pith reader. Gus Puryear, the corporate counsel for CCA and embattled nominee for the federal judgeship in Tennessee's Middle District, is again facing questions over how his company handled the July 2004 death of inmate Estelle Richardson. Rob McGuire, the assistant Davidson County district attorney who prosecuted the four guards who last came into contact with Richardson, says CCA officials initially told police that the camera that should have recorded the inmate's interactions with the guards wasn't working. But when a detective looked at it, the camera was working just fine. Was this a clumsy stab at a cover-up by CCA or just one of many coincidences that the company used to explain its former inmate's shocking death? I'll have more information later in the day, but for a critical look at the Richardson case, check out the website of Alex Friedmann, the anti-CCA activist who, I should note, landed the initial interview with McGuire. Mr. Tuke, I'm crushed. This morning I eagerly went to check my voice mail and I still haven't heard from you. Not a word. And here I thought we were going to turn the corner. Somehow, in my homage to a pair of excellent spokespeople, Rachel Woods and Dana Coleman, I inexplicably left out Mary Morgan, the smart and open representative of the Tennessee Board of Regents. My bad. As you might have guessed, The Tennessean largely wrapped a halo around Lt. Gov. John Wilder's head. (I'd link you to story, but I don't have the patience to navigate their mess of a website). I still prefer Jeff Woods' more apt and succinct summation of the man as a “loogie-hocking, nose-picking octogenarian who reigned over the Senate as lieutenant governor for 35 years and gave us all reason to pray for the good health of the governor.” And, for that matter, it's worth revisiting my boss's take:
We frankly find it troubling that, during 35 years of power, Wilder has yet to risk his hide over any meaningful principle, issue or ideology. As a speaker with nothing worthwhile to say—and, we might add, a tenuous grasp on both standard methods of communication and basic English grammar—his greatest political accomplishment is self-preservation.
Finally, congratulations are in order for the Belmont Bruins, who pushed the heavily-favored Duke Blue Devils to the throes of elimination until a coast to coast layup by Gerald Henderson put Duke up for good.

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