The Martinsville Bulletin has Martinsville Finance Director Wade Barlett saying that Rep. Goode “was not involved in drafting a performance agreement between Martinsville and the Virginia Economic Development Partnership.” At first blush, this would seem to fly in the face of Virginia’s own records on the matter, which state directly that Goode came up with the highly-unusual agreement. But parse the words in today’s statement closely and you’ll see how both can be true: no, Goode didn’t draft the document; surely the city has attorneys for that. He merely came up with the concept and left the details to others.
The truth is easily found Waldo. If you were more interested in enlightening your readers than getting a head start on the next 5th District campaign you would tell the entire story. Just as I have.
A dozen media outlets have been attempting to find “the truth” for a year and a half now — if you have some special abilities that you’d like everybody else to know about, I hope you’ll share them.
I’ve just got to follow up on that. There are a pair of particularly poisonous implications to your comment that I can’t ignore.
First is the implication that Rep. Goode should not have opposition from his political (and there’s really no other word for this) opposition. That somehow he should be left alone because, dang it all, he’s our congressman. That knee-jerk reaction is facially wrong and, in fact, anti-democratic. Goode should be subject to the same scrutiny from Democrats that any elected Democrat should be subject to from Republicans or, in fact, any of their constituents. That’s how we keep our elected officials honest.
Second is the implication that I’m deliberately keeping people in the dark by willfully denying them some greater truth and that, logically, the same must go for any media outlet that has covered this story, notably the Richmond Times-Dispatch and the Roanoke Times. That we’re all denying our readers access to some answer that is totally obvious for the sake of partisan gain. That’s a recklessly nasty claim, one that is both unsubstantiated and unsubstantiatable.
The polite response to this post would have been “actually, Waldo, you and the media outlets looking into this have overlooked something, and it’s x.” Instead you had to be rude.
Thing is, what you claim has been overlooked has not been overlooked at all — Martinsville’s still on the hook for the decided-upon value, and Rep. Goode bears a great deal of the blame. One way or another, somebody’s got to cough up that money. I’m reminded of the folks who won cars on Oprah’s show. Yay, they got a free car…but they still had to come up with the $10k to pay for the tax. Having the car was cold comfort to many of them.
That’s the funny thing about politics. We go on and on about who really has the truth, but the fact is that ImNotEmeril is just as much a political hack as Waldo, myself or any of us. It would be idiotic for Waldo not to talk about the 5th District race now. Any politician knows that when you smell blood, you go for the jugular. It doesn’t matter if the election is tomorrow, or happened yesterday. ImNotEmeril, by even bringing up these issues, on his blog or any other, is guilty of the exact same behavior he criticizes Waldo for. Funny, since Waldo has always been open about his motives.
I’m just glad it’s us on offense and them on defense. Trust us, we know the feeling, and we’re not about to go back to that any time soon.
All of the information I posted today came from the Martinsville Bulletin and the Roanoke Times. I’ve simply posted the facts as they are presented, not cherry picked phrases out of context.
I may have missed it but I’ve never read anything of yours that even mentions Earl Reynolds or Tom Harned, the two gentlemen who actually put the deal together.
Even the Roanoke Times acknowledges that John Sternlicht, general counsel to the Virginia Economic Development Partnership, wrote the performance agreement. In that same article Lawrence Hammock, stated that Sternlicht had concerns which he communicated to Earl Reynolds. Reynolds response is also quoted in that article.
You also have yet to acknowledge that Gene Teague, Terry Roop, and a majority of the city council had to agree with the deal set up by Reynolds, Harned, and Sternlicht before it could come to fruition. If I’m not mistaken, Elizabeth Haskell, owner of the Martinsville Bulletin was on the council at that time. I do know for a fact that nothing gets into the Bulletin that George and Elizabeth Haskell has not personally approved. Not a single Bulletin article suggests that Virgil put the deal together.
You can also do the math. Martinsville has simply not lost money on this deal, even if the final rebate is $160,000. Granted, the return on the investment is puny, but there has been a return. Not the massive loss you claim.
I am curious about one thing though. Just which one of you really did come up with the restitution idea? Was it you or Al?
I’ve just got to follow up on that.
The only “special ability” I have, if you want to call it that, is the ability to post entirely truthful statements. If you can refute even one of my bullet points I will cheerfully post a retraction.
I would only add that Mr. Foley is a smug, self-righteous dick who can’t stand the fact that the Republican Congressman in this case is dead in the water (a naval term). If Mr. Foley would find it in his heart to act more civilly, maybe we could have an actual conversation instead of a whine and cheese party.
Mr. Foley, if you would only talk with us instead of down to us, maybe you would find a better reception here. But you insist on being the way you have exhibited here. As a guest here myself, I try to behave well as much as possible.
The restitutions you speak of; certainly you don’t think that there are only two people anywhere who would have had this idea. Myself, I would rather see a jail sentence for Mister Goode; failing that for the time being, restitution to Martinsville sounds like the honorable thing to do.
Good Evening to you.
Call me a dick if you wish, Mr. Brooks.
All I’ve done is state the facts as they are clearly outlined in my local liberal media. If any of you can dispute those facts I will be glad to retract my statements.
I must have missed how a question like this:
is an actual fact. No, it is your lame attempt to goad someone into telling you that you are full of it.
Good luck on the explanation of what I have called attention to here. It is but one thing that you are wrong about.
And yes, that makes you a dick, even without your ‘facts’.
I find it fascinating that you cherry-pick the items you wish to respond to. If you were being honest, then you would answer my query as to why you feel the need to talk down to me and anyone really, about this subject. I will take your silence on this subject as confirmation that you are talking down to me, and that you don’t care if you are.
You don’t really want to talk, you just want to insist that you are right. We differ in that opinion.
I’m very sorry Mark. I had no idea I was “talking down” to you. Again, all I’ve done is report the facts as they are outlined in the local media.
If you feel I am talking down to you, perhaps that is an indication that you are not up to the debate at hand. Please, let me know where I am talking down to you and I will be happy to simplify my message just for you.
All welcome except the intolerant.
Is name calling the best you can do Mr Brooks? As Chair of the Cumberland County Democratic Committee I would think you could easily provide us readers with some facts to refute Alton and the sources he has presented.
I do not think Waldo like the word Dick used on his blog. As a long time reader I think Waldo prefers Penis. Correct me if I am wrong Waldo.
Maybe that was an unfortunate choice of words. Forgive me Mr. Brooks. Tel me where I am “talking down” to you and I will be happy to talk up to you. Just let me know what the difference is. I’m too stupid to know what I’m supposed to do in this politically correct world you inhabit.
Just for the record, “Dead in the Water” is not a Naval term. It is a nautical term. It describes a vessel that is not making way under it’s own power. It does not mean that it is not moving, as it may set and drift.
It would fall under the category of a “vessel not under command” which means that it can not manuever to avoid other vessels. It would not be a “vessel restricted in her ability to maneuver” as those are vessels which are restricted due to specialized operations, such as trawling or dredging.
She would identify her situation at night by displaying two all around red lights in a vertical line. This can be remember with; red over white, fishing at night and red over red, the captain is dead.
The day shapes to identify a vessel not under command are two round black shapes displayed in a vertical line.
Ref: COLREGS 27 (a)
You know, Waldo, I must admit that I am more than slightly amused by your comments in this post and your earlier article on this subject.
It seems to me that you took Alton to task for inferring certain things on his own…and that you never meant to imply those things.
Aren’t you now inferring from the Bulletin article?
Here’s an example….
In the Bulletin, Wade Bartlett, the Martinsville City Finance Director, is quoted saying that that Goode “didn’t have anything to do with the performance agreement. That was a decision of the city council.”
Further, Congressman Goode is quoted in that article stating, “I never talked to the state when the agreement was being drafted.”
In a prepared statement, Goode wrote, “I do not know the details of the agreement between the state of Virginia and the city of Martinsville.”
In your post, you wrote, “[b]ut parse the words in today’s statement closely and you’ll see how both can be true: no, Goode didn’t draft the document; surely the city has attorneys for that. He merely came up with the concept and left the details to others.”
Let’s do parse this out because I think that the language of the statements for Congressman Goode and Mr. Bartlett are quite clear.
1. Bartlett says that Goode had nothing to do with the agreement. That is was a decision of the City Council.
2. Goode states that he didn’t know the details of the agreement.
You cannot make a statement that “[Goode] merely came up with the concept and left the details to others” without inferring certain things that are not in the public record.
In fact, you cannot make that leap without first accusing Mr. Bartlett of being a liar.
Yeah, I believe what Mr. Goode says.
But that’s not what Mr. Bartlett said. As the Bulletin explained, he said that Rep. Goode “was not involved in drafting a performance agreement.” Which, as I explained, is surely absolutely true. Neither I nor anybody else has said that Goode was involved in that process. The Roanoke Times relying on documents procured from the Virginia Economic Development Partnership, makes very clear what his role was. I’ll reproduce the relevant portion here:
What we can see here quite clearly is that Rep. Goode’s role was to act as rainmaker, connecting Martinsville with MZM. As I have explained, that’s where things get fuzzy. Goode’s role was to vouch for MZM, brokering this deal between MZM and Martinsville.
If there’s any question about the prominence of Goode’s role in this, one need look no further than the video of the grand opening. Martinville thanks Rep. Goode for convincing MZM to move there, and MZM thanks Goode for convincing them to come to Martinsville. He was the broker. I can’t say whether he acted in bad faith, I can’t say how specific his role was. But I can say that there is nothing that Mr. Harned’s labeling the matter “Project Goode” makes clear his prominence in the transaction, that there’s nothing Mr. Bartlett said in the Bulletin that is inconsistent with that, and that there’s nothing I’ve said that implies that Mr. Barlett is being anything less than honest.
As per usual, you are leaving out important and relevant portions of the articles you cite.
1. From that same Roanoke Times article, John Sternlicht, general counsel of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (“VEDP”) is quoted as saying, “[t]he company is usually on the hook but in this instance, based on [Martinsville’s] urgent request, this is what we did.”
2. Wade Barlett is quoted in the Bulletin piece stating that Goode “didn’t have anything to do with the performance agreement. That was a decision of the city council.”
The primary thrust of these statements is that Martinsville very much wanted this deal. In fact, the Roanoke Times piece references the dire economic circumstances of the Martinsville area:
“… given Martinsville’s dire economic conditions — unemployment in the area at the time was nearly four times the state jobless rate of 3.4 percent — Sternlicht said the state agreed to make an exception. ‘The company didn’t make any fans here at the state by acting this way,’ Perez wrote in an e-mail to his colleagues at VEDP.”
You state, “[Goode] merely came up with the concept and left the details to others.”
I think that the above-referenced quotes make it clear that MZM and the City of Martinsville came up with the concept in conjuction with VEDP.
Congressman Goode was doing his job. He was trying to promote his district and bring jobs to an area very much in need of them.
He did his job. Nothing more and nothing less. It’s not the first deal to go sour.
Roger, there is nothing that you’ve said that contradicts anything that I said. Everything that you quote makes clear that Martinsville’s City Council struck a deal with the state, something that neither I nor anybody else has questioned. We’re talking in circles here.
Whether or not Rep. Goode “did his job” is very much a matter of speculation. He made big promises to Martinsville after being given a staggering sum of money by MZM. That deal went bad. The question is whether his judgement was clouded by the money that he’d received. I cannot see any way around that being so. The amount of money he was given was so enormous that it was the subject of international media coverage. The correlation between the two events is either a truly striking coincidence or constitutes causation.
This isn’t about contradiction. This is about how you have cited certain articles in support of your contentions while at the same time omitting exculpatory statements made by key officials in those same articles.
You have not presented a complete and total picture on this subject. Rather, you have cherry picked bits and pieces to suggest that Congressman Goode is somehow on the take.
Your statement right here, tells me all I need to know about your bias: “[t]he correlation between the two events is either a truly striking coincidence or constitutes causation.”
You don’t have any fact to support that contention. All you do is speculate. In the process, it is very clear that your only interest is to smear the name of a much beloved Congressman. If you would spend some time south of Charlottesville, you would understand that Virgil is very much a man of the people.
Alton has laid out the facts regarding the contributions and the timeline.
Don’t come on here and present a bunch of idle speculation and call it fact. Too many people know better.
While we are having this colloquy, I have to ask why you have suddenly begun to address me by my first name as opposed to “Rowhey.”
The last I checked, I posted as “Rowhey” — not under my first name.
You and I can agree to disagree on many, many issues but I think that you owe me the respect that I have showed you by not addressing you by your first name.
From my quick checking, I see that Waldo is truly your first name.
Even still, I ask that you refer to me as “Rowhey.”
What kind of bike do you ride? I ride Harleys but have interest in Nortons and Triumphs. See you on the parkway sometime.
All the best,
And it’s my assertion that I have not omitted any exculpatory statements. As I have explained, the statements that you see as exculpatory I see as, when taken literally, being significantly less than exculpatory. You simply give more benefit of the doubt than I do. As a Democrat, it’s my job to give less benefit of the doubt to Republicans; as a Republican, it’s your job to give less benefit of the doubt to Democrats. So it goes.
I have never claimed otherwise.
I hope that have presented no speculation as fact. I attempt to label my opinion as such when it’s not sufficiently obvious that it is, in fact, speculation.
I’ll call you whatever you like. I’ve never particularly understood the concept of a nom de internet, but it’s all the same to me. Everybody’s got a right to decide for themselves what they’d like to be called.
It’s a 1973 Honda CL350. It’s in beautiful shape — the odometer’s hasn’t ticked past four digits. It would perhaps not be my first choice of motorcycle (I’m a tall guy; it’s a small bike), but it was my grandfather’s, and I like to keep such things in the family. That said, my wife is not fond of motorcycles (to put it lightly), so it’s been many months since I’ve ridden.
Triumphs and Norton both make (made) beautiful bikes. I’ve never had the opportunity to ride either, but I certainly would enjoy the opportunity. If I were going to get a classic bike (and, since my wife reads this blog, I ain’t sayin’), I’d have to get an Indian. My wife has a picture of her grandfather sitting on his Indian, many years ago, and I’d sure like to have that bike. It was America’s first motorcycle.
It’s my understanding that a new company calling itself Indian has started up, and intends to bring back the Indian in the spirit of the original business. I’m dubious — particularly since another company tried that a few years ago and did a terrible job of it — but optimistic.
As a Norton fan, perhaps you could set your sights on a Kenny Dreer Commando. I don’t know about the specs on it, but it sure is a beautiful bike.
“Rowhey” just happens to be what my old drinking buddies call me. So, it’s not so much a nom de guerre but rather a nickname.
Even still, I am telling you to refrain from using my first name — one gentleman to another.
Comments are closed.