Thoughts on an Earlier Post

I watched the comment fly all day on the Mecum post (below) and have to admit that I agree with a lot of what our readers have said on both sides. But allow me to clarify even more.

The word “lynch mob” came up several times and I would have to agree with those who brought it up that we need to be careful not to become one.

We know nothing about the relationship betweet Mr. Mecum and the woman mentioned in the complaint. It could have been an acquaintance or even romantic situation but that is none of our business. If Brett was infatuated to the point of pursuing her or in today’s politically correct language “stalking” her, she obviously didn’t harbor the same feelings and felt compelled to file a complaint with the authorities.

I am surprised that he felt that Voter Vault was the most appropriate way to find out how to get in contact with her. Why not use Facebook, the phonebook or the Maricopa County Assessor’s website which contains the names and addresses of individual homeowners? Unless she was a renter, he could have stayed within the boundaries of the law by accessing another source of data. However Commenter #29 has a point if that is what the Voter Vault agreement actually states. As a precinct committeeman, I’ve had to sign a non-disclosure usage agreement to access voter data. And it’s hard to argue with the fact that the law states that it is a class 6 felony. Of anyone who should know the terms and conditions of using  Voter Vault and it’s proper usage, you would expect it to be a party official. Right?

Let’s face it, incidents like this whether fabricated, conspired or true, are a serious public relations problem for the Arizona Republican Party. I would presume that the State Executve Committee would investigate and make a decision whether there are personnel issues it needs to address and whether it needs to take actions to avoid further public relations or even liability issues. Any inquiry by the EC should be thorough and deliberative and avoid embracing a lynch mob mentality.

I don’t know if Brett has “enemies,” as he claims, who want to destroy his career. We know very little about the woman Brett was pursuing. Could she have been a Democrat trying to set him up? Thus far, she hasn’t stepped forward to verify her story. That leaves it up to MCSO to make a determination.

To the broader question. This is where I would really love our reader’s feedback. Should incidents like this ever be posted on Sonoran Alliance? I decided to allow the post to stand because it was not merely a disagreement over policy matters. In the past we have covered stories about Republicans who have been caught doing illegal or unethical activities. Commenter #9 alluded to Mark Sanford, Larry Craig and Mark Foley – all Republicans who did something that got them into trouble and hurt the party (and probably cost elections from a collateral damage standpoint).

Would our readers prefer NOT to see posts that reveal Republicans who break the law or act unethical? Is it better if we sweep it under the carpet, look the other way or just remain silent? Does our silence equate to condoning these acts and ultimately causing more damage? Democrats are always quick to remind us about the log in our own eyes whenever we point out the splinter in theirs. Has anyone in our party ever thought about getting our own house in order or, do we always want to respond with, “well, they do it too?”

Back to the question. Are posts like the Mecum post from the “genre” of the circular firing squad or do they really have a value in the long-run? Do they hurt us more than help us and do they restore credibility to our principles and agenda? I always believed that we were the party of reason, consistency and moral absolutes. If we can’t strive for those ideals then what’s the point of trying to make our lives and country a better place?

Now it’s your turn…


Comments

  1. Veritas Vincit says

    I am commenting to say, “… No comment.”
    <8-)

  2. Yah gotta be kidding. says

    Um, how are you going to avoid the entire Arpaio/Thomas meltdown?

    Seriously.

    Or just allow what is left of the party to self destruct, and leave the dems in control for the first time in decades.

    Cause that is where this is going.

    Fools.

    Might as well muckrake, because the sewage is overflowing right now.

  3. Be who you are and say what you feel….
    Because those that matter don’t mind….
    And those that mind don’t matter.
    (Dr. Suess)

  4. Antifederalist says

    Shane,
    I say post the stories. I’ve always believed sunlight is the best disinfectant. It’s better to expose the scum of the party and eject them rather than to allow them to stay and spread corruption. It’s better to rip the band-aid off early and do LESS damage overall. Cliches to be sure, but appropriate.

  5. nightcrawler says

    The short is yes..keep posting.

    The National and State GOP already have websites that offer up information that is sanitized before distribution.

    The role of SA and other similar blogs is to educate and spark up conversation regarding politics through the prism of a particular point of view. Not all agree, and that is why so many of us come back for more.

    On this rare occassion, I concur with Anti 100%.

    The story about Mecum has little to do with a man and a woman or even stalking. The real story is about the use a position of power and the trappings thereof to try to impress and intimidate people. The implication of the use of the Voter Vault as a tool to discover “I know where you live and I can find you anytime” by a senior official in the AZGOP is not only foolhardy beyond reason, but a breach of trust that we all share in the Republican community.

    I believe Mecum works hard and does good job. I like him personally. His fate is best left up to Randy who in the end will need to live with his decision either way.

  6. Yah gotta be kidding,

    So you want to see more posts directed at Arpaio and Thomas? Are you not already getting that from the Phoenix New Times?

  7. makes me sick says

    I didn’t have an opinion on this story until I read Randy Pullen’s arrogant response in the Yellow Sheets:

    “Pullen said the party can use the information any way that they want: “What did he use? He used Voter Vault. The Republican National Committee owns Voter Vault. The data has been greatly altered from what’s there. It’s very questionable whether it would even be considered a voter list. It’s not an official list of anything…. This isn’t the first time this has come up in the United States, and it’s always been determined it’s not a voter list. It’s a private list. We own the list. We can do what we want with the list, quite frankly.”

    This is the response from our AZ GOP Chairman? We own it and can do anything we want with it. Pullen admitted that he had not even read the affidavit. What ever happened to being the “good guys” at the Republican Party? The expected response would be to say we are going to investigate what is going on here and going to take appropriate actions. This is corruption of power at its highest level. We need to clean house at the AZ GOP. This makes me sick.

  8. If nothing else, the story shows that the AZGOP is terrible at managing stories.

    They shouldn’t feel too bad. Phil Gordon’s office can’t do it any better.

  9. Conservative says

    Thanks DSW for posting this analysis. I don’t think it’s a herd mentality that we’re seeing here. I think there are now numerous individuals who have seen Mecum’s behavior over the last year that he has been ED, and are outraged by it and the fact it is allowed to continue. Many of us have dealt with him personally and have had bad experiences, whether it’s his rudeness, arrogance, or inappropriate actions toward women.

    Let’s be realistic: would most people in his position still be there after the succession of events we’ve seen? More than likely not. Has Pullen let him stay longer than he should have, considering the public outrage? Probably. As such, it is important that blogs like this cover this. Otherwise the Democrats can validly accuse us of covering up bad behavior by our own. They already are unfortunately, in their new anonymous blog http://sonoranweeklyreview.com/?p=1326

  10. Is Mecum threatening/retaliating against the girl as predicted? says

    This comment, which was also cross-posted on the Phoenix New Times website (http://blogs.phoenixnewtimes.com/valleyfever/2009/12/goper_brett_mecum_called_creep.php#comments), sounds suspiciously like a threat and retaliation from Mr. Mecum against the girl – precisely what she is afraid of. I hope the investigation takes comments like this into account. That poor girl.

    Enlightener Says:
    December 11th, 2009 at 10:23 pm
    Just a few points to ponder:

    1. Stalking is a serious matter, not simply showing up at a party where one was invited, luckily he still has all the text messages where she extended the invitation.

    2. Said accuser has an injunction to prohibit harassment taken out on another man within months of claiming Mecum’s actions. (CV2009-053106)

    3. In addition, this 22 yr old girl has a felony DUI pending in the Maricopa County Prosecutor’s office where Mecum’s ex girlfriend is employed. (CR2009-131208-001)Coincidence???

    4. Is he a playboy or a creepy stalker? Arent the two kind of polar opposites?

    5. Raise your hand if you have never surpassed the speed limit.

    This is an elementary smear job from a very few. Brett is a decent man who works quite hard and takes a lot of crap. Pretty much bogus drama.

  11. Comment #10 says

    The word “bogus” is not commonly used these days. I have seen this word twice this week. Once in Brett Mecum’s response calling the charges “bogus” and the second time at the end comment #10’s response saying this is pretty much “bogus” drama. Mecum is using this blog to harass that girl again. What a piece of work.

  12. To: Makes me Sick says

    I agree with you that Pullen’s dismissive response about sensitive voter registration information is alarming. If that is the way he treats voter information, he does not belong in a position of authority as GOP chairman. There is a reason why misusing voter registration information is a felony, not just a misdemeanor or civil infraction. Very troubling our Republican Party chairman would rather blindly defend someone who has likely committed a felony, than investigate the incident. Pullen’s response should have been, “Misusing voter registration information is a serious felony, and I will be looking into this matter.” Pullen has already tried Mecum and determined he is innocent, which is not his call, it is now in the hands of the Sheriff.

  13. Hopefully, I speak for many Republicans when I say, “Can we get this mess cleaned up quickly so we can move on to the 2010 elections?”

  14. Conservative says

    DSW, the problem is we can’t move beyond this and work on the 2010 elections as long as Mecum is still ED. A lot of Republicans feel uncomfortable working with the State party as long he is the primary person they will be working with. The only way to ensure that the party can move on is to replace him. His speeding ticket is still hanging out there, awaiting retrial. As long as he is still the face of the party, he is a lightening rod for attacks from the Democrats. He should do the right thing and step down, he has become too much of a distraction. A little too immature for the position, doing foolish things and making needless enemies. The kind of guy who desperately wants to be in the center of the limelight, get fast women and appear powerful. That’s not the kind of person we need heading the Republican party. Could you see Tom Husband or Rob Haney or Lisa James cavorting like that? Of course not. Mecum is the wrong guy for this position, and continues to prove it over and over. I predict the party will continue in disarray in 2010, and will be largely ineffective for Republicans, who will resort on outside political consultants, the Maricopa County Republican Party, and other organizations instead in Arizona in order to win.

  15. I’m sure wanumba will be here any moment to tell us why this ain’t no big thing because somewhere, somehow a Democrat has done something equal to or greater than Mecum’s doing.

    And it’s exactly that sort of philosophy that’s going to rain fire down on the AZ GOP and I couldn’t be more pleased.

  16. I don't know about anyone else says

    But all this is quite depressing

  17. Enlightener(NOT MECUM) says

    So everyone posts anonymously and when I do listing my two cents worth as a woman(throwing around the word “stalking” is offensive to me), a supporter of the AZ State GOP and an anti-witchhunt enthusiast then suddenly Im Brett??

    Negative.

    He is my friend(I do not use that word lightly) and I dont want to see him loose his dream job.

    Classic..Ya investigations often take in account blog posts of public record info & opinion??? Is this amateur hour???

    Why eat your own Pachyderms?????

    Oh and btw I love the word “bogus”…I can also use “trumped-up” or “falsified”, “fraudulent” or how about “fictitious” whatever makes the SA peanut gallery joyous during this holiday season.

    Thanks for making my first post such a pleasant experience.

    God Bless!

  18. Is Mecum threatening/retaliating against the girl as predicted? says

    Enlightener/Mecum/denying you are Mecum:

    You seem to know a lot about Mr. Mecum, that’s the first I’ve heard of text messages. And you strangely know so much about the anonymous victim. You are clearly very informed about this case. Is there a reason why you think it is ok to post highly embarrassing information about the victim (if true) on public blogs to retaliate, as she said she was afraid would happen?

  19. Veritas Vincit says

    Speed Racer may or may not be the character in the Captain Planet costume, and this woman who’s made the charges may or may not have issues of her own. Who knows?

    Does anyone know how easy it is to have a supervisor ‘investigated’ for sexual harassment even if the claims are unfounded?

    On the other hand, if the Vice President of the Diamondbacks pulled a boneheaded stunt like this and used season ticket-holder records to find a babe, they would be dusting off their resume by this afternoon and the CEO would be issuing a very different statement than the AzGOP Chairman seems to have issued.

  20. I love the feigned soul searching, Shane.

  21. What is that supposed to mean, Bill? Shane has been censoring comments about Mecum for awhile. Just because he finally permits posts and comments to go through about Mecum’s proclivities doesn’t mean you have to slam him. I’ve tried to post several comments about Mecum before that, which Shane has censored. I may not agree with Shane for having censored prior posts and comments about Mecum for as long as he did. But I certainly wouldn’t make fun of him now for reconsidering, especially since major mainstream news outlets like the Capitol Times have picked up on it. http://azcapitoltimes.com/blog/2009/12/11/gops-mecum-subject-of-complaint/

  22. I just want to know what our readers want? I read the comments saying thanks for exposing the truth regardless of political affiliation and then I read angry comments about the circular firing squad.

    Some things I have censored – particularly comments that attack family members or make unproven assertions. I even censored a link showing Brett feigning oral sex being performed by some young woman in a garage. Not this time. These photos of Brett are out there and given all the stories over the last few years of young women having their photos taken in provocative positions, one would think that these kinds of photos are going to make it to the internet as some point.

    My argument is that we Republicans try to live by a higher standard that is based on some moral and ethical absolutes.

    It’s pretty hard to deny some of the recent activities and if we really want to be serious about what we believe, then we better get our act together.

    The way I see it, there are some of you who want to get our act together and there are some of you who want to bury your heads in the sand and ignore the problems.

    So I ask the question again. Do you want to read posts that point out the problem(s) or do you want to read posts that look the other way?

    feign, feign, feign…

  23. I want more stories about Vernon Parker’s profitting off his government job and the Justice Dept investigation of such.

    And I want Sheriff Joe to run for Gov’nor. And so I really want lots of stories about that.

    And if the Coyotes stay in Glendale, I want them to win lots of games.

    And I want a an official Red Ryder Carbine-Action Two-Hundred-Shot Range Model Air Rifle. I promise I won’t shoot my eye out.

    But mostly I want Sheriff Joe to run for governor.

  24. OK, I have to admit that was pretty funny. Now go to bed.

  25. Conservative says

    DSW, I think you already have your answer. As reflected by the lengthy number of comments on this post and the previous one, this has been one of the most popular subjects ever on this blog. The vast majority of the comments have expressed a negative opinion about Mecum, not disapproval with the post. I don’t see a rush of commenters responding that the topic is inappropriate. It would be worse if you had censored this information, and Mecum ends up getting removed as ED or criminally convicted – then it would look like you had purposely suppressed relevant political information. As long as it’s politically newsworthy, and at least somewhat relevant to Arizona conservatives, you should allow discussion of the topic.

  26. Blog reader says

    The length number of comments doesn’t prove anything. I would bet that a majority of the anti-Mecum comments are by a small group of two or three people that have a huge grudge againist Mecum. I would suspect the majority of reader are turned off by the constant circular firing squad nature of the relentless posts attaching Mecum, Charles Jensen, et al.

  27. Shane, you own Arizona’s biggest bathroom wall and people have been scribbling outrageous garbage on here for a while.

    Now to engage in this navel gazing about what’s right and wrong for SA rings hollow. You operate the casino; don’t act shocked that there’s gambling going on in here.

  28. As the omniscient and benevolent administrator of Sonoran Alliance, there have actually been a wide variety of unique IP addresses associated with the comments.

    You also forgot to mention the names of the Republican Professionals and our current Superintendent of Public Instruction. And don’t forget our current Governor and US Senator.

    That reminds me. Are the Democrats that good that no one has anything negative to say about them? Or, do we automatically assume they are inherently “rotten to the core?”

  29. Bill, would you like us to completely shut down all commenting? And have you checked the “bathroom walls” of the Arizona Republic and other media outlets lately?

  30. Regarding other bathroom walls, you can rest assured that I lament the comments on other outlets, too.

    You write, “Are the Democrats that good that no one has anything negative to say about them?”

    I have plenty. Keep in mind though, Shane, that the premise you’ve established for SA is that it’s a venue for Republicans to beat up other Republicans. It’s an online litmus test.

    But who cares what I think. It’s your site. Do what you want. It’s not like you’re responding to paying advertisers. The stakes are pretty low.

  31. Bill,

    Consider this my personal invitation to contribute to Sonoran Alliance if you think you can help raise the standards and stakes.

    Shane

  32. Conservative says

    Bill,

    DSW has censored plenty in the past on this site in the name of decency. Why don’t you give him credit for restricting a considerable amount that others have tried to post? I know he’s censored a couple of things I’ve tried to post before, which I understand since I was pointing out some personal flaws in politicians that he probably didn’t think were fair to be aired since they were “personal”. Sonoran Alliance is not a “bathroom wall” because DSW does delete a lot of the comments. Apparently you are Mecum or a friend of Mecum and would rather see all of this discussion shut down. Sorry, but the State Republican Party does not run this blog. This story has been run in multiple mainstream news sources already like the Capitol Times (http://azcapitoltimes.com/blog/2009/12/11/gops-mecum-subject-of-complaint/). It isn’t anything you can get away with sweeping under the rug anymore as bathroom wall entertainment. Why don’t you identify who you represent?

  33. George Carney says

    If Sonoran Alliance is a bathroom wall then Mecum has just peed all over it. Safe to say that Mecum is probably one the most hated people in politics in Arizona and Pullen is not too far behind. People mostly tolerate him because of his position that clearly went to his head. Executive Director of what? A party headquarters that is a ghost town because they have scared almost everyone off? There are stained carpets and paint cracking on the walls in the headquarters. It looks like an old strip club from the outside. Indside we have a Rino Executive Director that has been supportive of raising taxes in AZ? This train has derailed so long ago and we need to get it back on track. The corrupion and arrogance run rampant and the state party is the laughing stock of Washington DC. We need to clean house and be Reagan Republicans once again. I hear a petition is being taken out to remove Brett Mecum and Randy Pullen and already has significant backing of Conservative Republicans. As they said in the movie, The Hunt for Red October, “scuddle the ship.”

  34. All fairness to Brett, I don’t know where he stands on the issues so I can’t say if he falls into the category of being a RINO. What I do know is that I have seen many individuals in leadership of organizations who have been dismissed, fired, terminated, etc. over a lot lesser incidents. A board of directors typically expects “above reproach” behavior from its staff because they want the organization they represent or serve to succeed. Public perception is extremely important because it affects the organization’s ability to raise money and impact the community. If the Salvation Army’s CEO got caught in some form of unethical behavior, do you think the board would look the other way? If a high level staffer with Valley of the Sun United Way was involved in illegal or unethical activities, do you think the board would ignore it?

    Hopefully, this blog has made the point that the Republican Party has got to get its act together and it starts at the core. At first, I held back on Carnelian Saloon’s earlier post but they and our readers convinced me it was important to keep it up and open for comments for the good of the party.

    Seems to me a famous governor did the same thing when she realized what was going on in her party. So maybe we are going a little rogue here at Sonoran Alliance.

  35. “….I don’t know if Brett has “enemies,” as he claims, who want to destroy his career. We know very little about the woman Brett was pursuing. Could she have been a Democrat trying to set him up?…”

    Geez…Murkistanicals’ comprehension skills outsourced to India with our jobs?

    The woman admits she’s a registered Repub voter…on the list of registered voters where he illegally got her personal info/address to crash his creepy self at a private home event.

    And of course, SHE is protecting America as she said in her affidavit file against him.

    As a matter of public record: There are 30 previous complaints filed against Mecum and his lack of ‘family values’ cohorts by others, mostly women.

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