The Elected and the Useless

soapsNot that there was ever any chance that Jeffrey Blackwell would be an effective leader or a good police chief for the Cincinnati Police Department, recent events have ensured that he has become even less effective, if that is possible. I am referring to the events of the past few days whereby rumors of his pending resignation have been running rampant. Rumors do not make for accurate reporting, and the comments of politicians or even non-politicians controlled by politicians generally are even less accurate as they frequently obfuscate the truth to mislead the public. All of this tends to make the citizen’s of Cincinnati, who are footing the bill, have less confidence in their government, their police chief, and their police department.

What is most concerning is that Blackwell is under orders not to speak to the media. First off, What is it that he may have to say that the City Manager does not want him to say? I think this denotes lack of confidence of the Police Chief by the City Manager. I can’t help but wonder if he was actually ordered not to speak to the media or if he just said that he was ordered not to speak to the media. Wasn’t he speaking to the media when he said he was ordered not to speak to the media? Blackwell’s comment will certainly not sit well with the City Manager as I am sure many in the media are now knocking on the Manager’s door asking him what it is that Blackwell is not permitted to say. The puppet-police chief continues to have his strings pulled by the City Manager.

The City Manager has given the Chief until Friday to provide a plan to reduce violence. He has given this plan 90 days to be successful. The unanswered questions are: what happens if the plan is not successful? What are the parameters of success? What percentage of reduction is expected? Which violent crimes will this plan address? What happens if the plan is not a success? We should know these things. After all, did not both the City Manager and the Police Chief, on more than one occasion, promise transparency? How transparent is it when the Manager is not talking and the Police Chief is under orders not to talk?

This whole thing is starting to take on a soap opera like characteristic. Will the City Manager update the public. Will the gag order be removed from the police chief. Will the chief make his Friday deadline? Will the chief be successful in reducing violence in 90 days? Will Blackwell still be the police chief in 90 days. All of these questions may, or may not, be answered in the next episode of The Elected and the Useless. Stay tuned.

DISCLAIMER: Before the obvious is pointed out, I wish to acknowledge that for the most part, the title of this soap opera is redundant.

Those are my thoughts, what are yours?

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Tom Lind

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