Friday, May 15, 2009
E.B. Brown Takes The Stand, Angels Weep And Fear For Her Immortal Soul...
Oh, I wasn't done with E.B. Brown, yet, but between yesterday's post and today's there was time that had to be spent lavishly, to be invested, to be taken: time to eat the perfect salad, time to feed a dog half a bratwurst, time to talk about feelings, and the bright utopian future of NoMi, time to talk about why you don't put cabernet sauvignon in the fridge.
Do we not live at a pivotal point in neighborhood history? Soon enough--with all the progress happening, with all our hard work being invested--soon enough will come the tipping point in public perception, and all over Minneapolis the public at large will say, "You know, North Minneapolis used to be rough--I was scared to even go there--but that place is completely turning around! NoMi is like the new Soho!"
So where were we with E.B. Brown? UNDER OATH, as I recall.
"What was the purpose of the closed session, from your view?" Defense Attorney David Schooler asked.
Brown said her purpose was...
...to caution the board around wrongful termination discussions, vis-a-vis Jerry Moore. (Obviously, Brown didn't use the phrase "vis-a-vis.") E.B. Brown said she had concerns about any action being taken in closed sesssion, and felt she had "the authority to keep that from happening."
Schooler asked where was it written--in state law, in bylaws, in the words of some advising authority--that action couldn't be taken in closed session? Once again relying upon what law students would term a "natural law" argument--that you just know, instinctively, how it is, what the rules are, how God wants to give order to the universe when novel new questions arise in the conduct of human affairs, The Answer comes down to you from on high--E.B. Brown answered it was "standard" to do it that way, which--fleshed out and translated--appears to mean, "This is the way my crowd has always done it, and we forbid the new crowd to do otherwise, especially because it will mean we lose and they win."
The soft brush of angelic wings filled the room at that moment--things were under oath, and truth was what God Himself wanted in response to the questions by David Schooler. Let God be The Judge of E.B. Brown, but here are some of the questions and some of her answers, the reader can be her judge as well:
Question: Why was Jerry Moore terminated?
Answer: Brown has no idea why he was terminated.
Question: In regard to the missing records and equipment...
E.B. Brown appeared to visibly stiffen on the stand. Schooler said he wasn't going to ask her where the missing records and equipment were, he just wanted to ask her ABOUT the records and equipment...
Answer: Brown claims to not even know JACC records and equipment are missing.
This produced consternation among the spectators. What on earth? Does E.B. Brown really know nothing about that? And yet her answer, once analyzed a little more deeply, is actually consistent with the truth. No records or equipment are "missing." That stuff (in her point of view) is in the hands of the "true" JACC organization, which includes her, Ben Myers, Steve Jackson, and a very large vat of church Kool Aid.
Question: In regard to the JACC checkbook being missing.
Answer: E.B. Brown has no idea the checkbook is "missing."
Question(s): Her view of the events of January 14, 2009, wherein the "New Majority" voted out old officers, and voted in new ones.
Answer: "There proceeded an illegal election on that day...characterized as illegal, the process went forth. I did not approve."
Question: But was there a PUBLIC VOTE?
Answer: An illegal vote, and "I believe I am still the chair." (Very little confidence in her tone, however. Like asking an 8-year-old about Santa Claus)
Question: As the chair, is she obligated to conduct regular meetings?
At some point right around here, there is an objection. E.B. Brown is not required to answer some question, in light of the fact there has been lawyer-client discussion on this point, and that discussion appears to be the basis of whatever answer she'd need to give to the question.
David Schooler--who may be too lanky to be a graceful dancer, who knows?--is perfectly capable of dancing gracefully around questions he can't get answered. So he asked about meeting minutes, and whether such minutes exist. The answer is there have been no formal board meetings (of the"Old Majority") as of February, 2009. Are there any minutes from February, 2009? No, because no meeting happened.
Later that very night after spending all (expletive) day in court, the "New Majority" had a meeting at the JACC office. I can tell you what was discussed: shuffling around NRP money. Assigning details about a staff hiring decision to the proper committee. Pete the Pedophile's attempt to file a "grievance" with JACC, over being accused of trying to pass himself off as--good lord--having a position of authority from the Public Safety Committee, knocking on the door of Kip Browne's house and scaring the living daylights out of Kip's wife, Kelly--and the overwhelming success of Jordan's Clean Sweep, partially funded by money from the Hawthorne Neighborhood.
Kip Browne vowed Hawthorne would get repaid.
And the number of old tires picked up during Clean Sweep was 148. One. Forty. Eight. More than twice as many as the Hawthorne Neighborhood, but who is counting?
These are the things the "New Majority" had a meeting about, with proper minutes and representatives there from the police (Lt. Rugel) and NRP (Stacy Sorenson, who is being SUED by the "Old Majority") and the Hawthorne Neighborhood (Jeff Skrenes, Housing Director) and the media. (Johnny Northside blog) The New Majority had a meeting and the necessary stuff got done.
What gets done with the Old Majority since January 14, 2009?
Kool Aid is getting kind of cold. Might want to put more ice cubes in it.
I didn't see the end of E.B. Brown's testimony, because Pete the Pedophile's removal from court was far more interesting, see previous blog post. I did see E.B. Brown leave the court, waving to Steve Jackson on the stand. There was something about that wave...its wistful finality, like a ship full of old, unused Disney cartoon characters sailing off over the painted horizon, and the ship's horn blows....
Goodbye. Goodbye to a golden era. We tried our best, we failed in a blaze of glory, but didn't we go down like Texan soldiers at the Alamo? God only knows what the future will be, but didn't we have some happy hoody times? The wicked plot (don't deny it exists!) to transform the happy Northside hood into a "white, middle class" neighborhood is so far along, they are crushing us, they are winning, and Kip Brown is their highly-effective tool.
One last argument, though it came from Steve Jackson, not E.B. Brown.
Dissolve the JACC board, Your Honor. Start all over again with new elections. If the city wants an organization to do its dirty work in North Minneapolis, let them make their own, not take over JACC with a bunch of pawns. (Existential scream of agony. It's all coming apart. Everything is changing, and members of the "New Majority" are driving the so-called "revitalization" changes at breakneck speed)
For the record, one of the "pawns" in this purported plot--a science fiction fan whose Geekotopia collection is the wonder and glory of the Jordan Neighborhood, and I'm not talking about Kip Browne, here-- prefers to be called a "thrall," not a "pawn." Another of the "pawns" appears to revel in the term "meat puppet."
In the hallway, in animated discussions among the New Majority members, these accusations of being pawns of the City of Minneapolis invoke breathless laughter. If they're being used so well, where is the reward? Where is the cut? How is it they have to LOBBY SO HARD to get the things they need from the City of Minneapolis to change the neighborhood for the better, if there really is such a plot, and they are all part of it? Is it a nefarious gentrification plot to want to be safe on your own street from roving gangs of youth? From random gunfire? From vacant houses where crackheads break inside and take up residence?
"Oh, yes," said one of the New Majority. "The landed gentry are so eager to leave their palatial estates in the suburbs, and buy a 100-year-old fixer-upper former crack house in North Minneapolis. Right."
Hmmm, I thought. Such articulation. Get that man a blog.
What the Old Majority calls "gentrification" (and it was Plaintiff Attorney Jill Clark who first tossed out the "g word") is what the New Majority calls mere safety, mere livability, mere COMMON DECENCY.
So many of these issues were mere subtext to E.B. Brown's testimony. The outlines of the wicked City-led gentrification plot--and how taking over JACC plays right into that--would come from the mouth of Steve Jackson.
More to follow on Johnny Northside...