This was originally posted as a static page. Reposted into the blog format.
A couple of years ago, I moved into a little town called Manassas, Georgia. I initially thought it was Mayberry, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. Much more on that later, including widespread burglaries, drug traffic, prison contraband smuggling, public corruption, false official statements, and one recent murder in a local nightclub. Essentially, many public officials in this area appear to routinely ignore state and federal law, and even the fundamental principles of civilization, at a genetic level.
Fast forward to January, 2016. Audrey had just gotten herself elected to the city council, and was sworn in on the 4th of that month. Within a hour, the newly-elected mayor (the previously long-serving city clerk) convened a clandestine meeting of the city council in her office. Although Georgia law mandates closed meetings (known as executive sessions) in specific circumstances, this session did not meet those criteria, nor was the session convened in accordance with those requirements. Further, Georgia law requires that votes be taken in public, even on issues conducted in executive session, and in this case, two specific votes were taken in the clandestine meeting.
Emerging from that meeting, Audrey immediately disclosed the business conducted, including the modification of a sidewalk project (the contractor for that project and the city attorney share the same last name, by the way). I thought this to be a curious turn of events.
At that time, I had no specific suspicions about the Manassas city government, but I did think the contract modification seemed a little fishy. Given my defense contracting experience, and training as an operations officer at a Marine Corps recruiting station, I had some familiarity with the issues involved in government contracting (at least at the federal level) from both sides of the table. And this modification just didn’t smell right.
That smell got noticeably worse at the response I received when I mentioned these peculiar circumstances at the next city council meeting. Further, in March, Audrey and the mayor attended the state-mandated training for newly elected officials. Audrey’s notebook from those training sessions, especially the ethics portions, was flush with improprieties which the city was routinely committing. At the March city council meeting, Audrey gave a detailed report, including things the city needed to do to tighten its procedures to become aligned with state law. The reaction, particularly from the other councilwoman, was enlightening. It appeared to me that the city council had no intention of voluntarily aligning itself with state law, particularly when we were invited to move out of town if that is how we wished for things to run.
But why move, when things were just getting interesting?
Seeing the reaction of the government to Audrey’s training report (the other council members, re-elected incumbents all, had not seen fit to attend the state-mandated training during their previous terms), I decided to inquire further. Toward the end of March, I had compiled a list of demands, including specific disclosures of the contract modifications. On the 29th of March, I asked the city clerk (the mayor’s daughter) for the relevant records. She deferred to Momma, who was not in.
Audrey and I returned later that day. Mayor Momma was now in. I repeated my request, and when the mayor refused, I presented my written list, containing a detailed narrative. Discussion ensued, including the mayor wondering why I hadn’t moved yet. She eventually handed over some documents, but not all, and deferred to the city attorney, who was reputedly on vacation until six days’ hence. Audrey and I then left.
By the end of that day, Audrey decided that her political career had come to an end. Rather than some sappy “to spend more time with my family” pasty cuckservative resignation, the next day, on the 30th of March, she resigned in no uncertain terms, citing a “fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants” city government in her letter to county officials. Mayor Momma’s mistakes were no longer her problem.
I then sent my demand letter by certified mail, just to be sure that somehow it didn’t get overlooked. Mayor Momma signed for that letter on the 5th of April. The next morning she went to the sheriff’s office, and the following dramatic story was the product of that meeting, alleging disorderly conduct against me:
You can download and read the entire original sheriff’s report here. Some personal details have been scrubbed, including the mayor’s phone number. You could send her snail mails, I suppose, but she and the clerk will be busy answering certified mails from my attorney and me for a while, so cut her some slack.
Now, to my surprise, I did not get arrested over this allegation, or even questioned. I didn’t even find out about it until I made an open records request at the sheriff’s office later in April, following a very bizarre city council meeting. Interestingly, when I approached and spoke to one of the sheriff’s investigators, his response was “how did you get this?” Curious. Perhaps it was supposed to just lie there (in both respects) in the background as some sort of character assassination prep. Oops.
To be fair, the investigators did eventually ask me for my side of the story, but only after I approached them first. I replied that I didn’t really know what specific accusations were being made, and suggested that they go to the mayor (or anyone else who would care to participate) and get a detailed, sworn statement of my presumed offenses, and that after they did, I would nail all concerned parties into the ground on false official statements. Interestingly, I have yet to see any such sworn statements. More on that in future installments.
Now, my regular readers will know that my advice in such situations is to prepare the ground ahead of time by giving no slack in allowing spurious allegations to carry weight. I also advise to remain calm and expect injustice. That is just the country we live in now; none of you are of the appropriate cultural persuasion to expect any fraction of the slack afforded others.
I am now going to offer an additional piece of advice. When confronted with spurious charges such as this, be prepared to go on the administrative offensive, backed up by a considerable amount of physical and technological security. This I have done, and will continue to do. The next few articles in this series over the coming months will detail exactly how to engage in such an administrative war, and how to shape the battlefield. The local criminal element tipped its hand to me back in January of 2015 (including an unsolved burglary and sexual threats against Audrey and our then-12-year-old daughter), an entire year before Audrey took office, and I took advantage of this early information to establish a local intelligence network. Some of the participants in this network were obvious moles for the criminal or corrupt elements, but even they have had their uses.
Throughout 2015 and early 2016, I also sought counsel of many wiser heads, and held a series of debriefings and advice meetings over most of 2015 from various specialists in legal, technical, security, intelligence, psychological warfare, media, public affairs, administrative skills and other areas. Where practical, I hosted them locally and took them on a tour of my facilities, my security arrangements, and detailed briefings and tours of the local area and the criminal and corrupt elements and their various haunts and habits. Others, I hit the road to consult. Some were facing their own challenges and couldn’t help. I thank all of them. By the close of that year, I was ready to start placing pieces in play. Audrey’s election to the city council was a fortunate coincidence in this effort. I especially apologize to Dan Almond for not being able to help much with his campaign; back then, an entire under-layer of this saga was unfolding in another dimension just as he needed me most.
The ridiculous allegation above was just icing on the cake, and helped me focus my attention accordingly. Like I said, until that clandestine city council meeting, I wasn’t really paying much attention to the city at all. But after that allegation against me hit, and I discovered it, the number of public officials who were, initially, willing to close ranks on Mayor Momma’s and related parties’ behalf was astonishing. Some of those officials and behind-the-scenes parties were already on my radar from the January, 2015, events, but some were new volunteers for my attention whom I had not even noticed before. But no matter, that phalanx is getting thinner as more truth becomes available. Even now, I still believe this city government and its ongoing foolishness is really only a sideshow to the main action.
Not all public officials were or are obstructive. Not enjoying living in a pit of corruption, where insiders get rich and jobs and businesses vanish, some of them have tried to help in various ways. Some have merely just done their duty, which is enough. I am sure that others would have liked to help more but are concerned about their futures and their families. Some dropped strong hints in my direction such as “if someone asked me/official X/agency Y to do Z, I/they would have no choice but to comply”, while others just came right out and said “here’s what you need to do” or gave me some vital nuggets of hidden information. If it were possible to stack the deck with people like that, then this might be an OK place to live.
Despite the good ones, the number and variety of public officials who were willing to attempt to misdirect or obstruct me throughout this saga in obvious, clumsy and even criminally self-incriminating ways is embarrassing. Public officials can choose to be tyrants, corrupt or stupid. Unless they are incredibly rich or internationally connected, each official only gets to pick one option from that list; two or more are a recipe for self-destruction. For us good guys, then, ridiculous allegations such as the above will simply let you know you have them, rather than be a source of angst. Once you understand this, and have prepared accordingly, it is just a matter of tightening the vices in the right sequence and using the correct tools. I intend to teach you those skills.
This story is continuing to write itself (perhaps into another book, lecture series or other training materials), and I continue to uncover so much interesting information and official misconduct, across many jurisdictions, that I now have more mice scampering for cover than I have cats to chase them.
And only recently, for example, another document, potentially devastating to the city, was practically dropped into my lap, just on the heels of another piece of intelligence leakage from the concerned parties. Sometimes the gods smile on us in surprising ways.
Stay tuned, my friends. This will be an interesting story, one way or another.
Manassas, Georgia, 30 Sep 2016
Update: Since posting this article, shots have been fired. I think I’m chewing on a raw nerve.