Sunday, May 31, 2009

"True JACC" Lawsuit In The Jordan Neighborhood: Rank Odor Of Megalomania Wafts Through Courtroom As Ben Myers Takes The Stand...(Contains Parody) photo

So I'd better get this blog post done about Ben Myers' testimony, before old information begins to smell like rotten fish heads. However, it's pretty hard to write about Ben Myers under oath and NOT have it smell like something rotten...

Ben--who has been sporting something of a Mr. Clean haircut, lately, apparently the one and only way he can be "Mr. Clean"--took the stand and was immediately asked about an alleged "turf war" between JACC and (major city entity and funder) CPED.

Well, Ben said in response to the question--acting all coy, acting like he wasn't willing to use the phrase "turf war" but, oh gee, here was his ATTORNEY using the phrase--you couldn't call it a "turf war," exactly, but there was a period of time when no matter what JACC did, it was NEVER ENOUGH to please CPED.

Myers said CPED's loyalty was not to "the good of the (JACC) organization," but to a small group of Jordan residents: Megan Goodmundson, "the Wagners," and Anne McCandless. Poor Jerry Moore--he of the $60k salary with no college degree--was always being asked about "mundane and irrelevant" issues by "people like (Anne) McCandless."

According to Myers, he tried to get between Moore and "people like McCandless" to "handle that stuff." Myers was forced to deal with "a big volume of emails." Myers claimed he dealt with that kind of stuff "all day and got very little work done."

Myers had plans to get funding for the JACC organization, though, oh yes, he did. Myers floated a plan to "remit traffic stop proceeds" back to the neighborhood where the stop occurred. However, according to Myers, the 4th Precinct was "not receptive" to the idea and Council Member Don Samuels found out the money went to the "general fund," so neighborhoods getting a slice--it just wasn't happening. This was, however, one of "a number of ideas to sustain the organization," including seeking out private funders.

Jill Clark asked why it was necessary for JACC to seek additional private funds. Ben said he didn't want to "put all the eggs in one basket," relying so heavily on the city (which wanted revitalization, not a stagnant crime-ridden neighborhood) (well, Myers didn't say THAT part) so it was best to seek additional funding from other sources.

At that moment, in the court room, P.J. Hubbard sat and listened to the testimony, and used the time in court to multi-task. A pile of bills sat to his right, along with a booklet of Liberty Bell "Forever" stamps. Hubbard wrote out one check after another, stuffing the checks in the envelopes. I was tempted to call over Jerry Moore--often seat just several feet away--and say, "Yo, Jerry, CHECK THIS OUT. Watch what Hubbard is doing. THIS IS HOW YOU PAY BILLS ON TIME."

Ben Myers was asked about the January 14, 2009 meeting at which Jerry Moore was removed from his position as Executive Director of JACC. Myers said he had "no notice prior to the meeting there would be an amendment to the agenda to take up the termination of Jerry Moore." Here, one sees the cracks in Ben's armor and the Kool Aid cult fuel flowing through the machine:

In Ben's world, members of a committee can't amend an agenda. No, not after the (sort of) duly elected executive officers of the neighborhood organization have decided what is on the night's agenda, and it doesn't include firing poor Jerry.

Oh, sure, minor stuff can be amended. Sure. MINOR STUFF. But not something important. What's "important?" Whatever Ben says, though sometimes he will say it through figurehead E.B. Brown.

Plaintiff Attorney Jill Clark asked why the Moore contract didn't go through Bob Miller of NRP? Myers said Miller had "no jurisdiction or standing to object to the contract."

Ben was asked about Dan Rother, and Rother's numerous grievances, his constant requests for financial information. Ben said, "Mr. Rother is special...definitely special."

Well, I thought, Ben is actually telling the truth. Rother is indeed special. He's devoted, he's brave, he gives a damn about his neighborhood, and his partner loves him. Special, indeed. God bless Dan Rother.

Ben said Rother was "concerned" with organization finances. Myers claimed he "gave Rother stuff" but the requests for info became "hostile." Myers said there was a "volume of questions, complaints, animosity." Nothing could satisfy Rother. The hostility became "abusive," Ben claimed. Ben considered the organization "harassed" by Dan Rother's oh-so-unreasonable requests to look at the books while JACC was paying Jerry "Magna Cum Nothing" Moore $60K a year.

In 2008, Kip Browne became the Chair of the Nominations Committee. Myers said he wanted to put Browne in that position so Browne would "do something positive" instead of "complaining and moaning." But, Myers said, Browne used the committee chairmanship for "self gratification."

Sitting and listening to this, I seethed. I wanted to stand up and say, "Ben, we shared the same small bedroom in mom's double wide trailer, so don't think I don't know all about your--"

Never mind.

Myers--who apparently uses Jerry Moore as something of a benchmark--said Kip Browne "didn't do his job" on the Nominations Committee. Then--in a moment which caused confused looks to travel throughout the spectator section--Ben began to assert with a straight face that, typically, in the JACC organization it is the old board members who elect executive officers, which remain when the new board members come aboard.

I leaned over and whispered to P.J. Hubbard, "Wait a minute. Isn't that BACKWARDS?" Hubbard rolled his eyes, nodded, and paid his gas bill.

Myers was asked about his own term in office on the board. Unexpectedly, under questioning from HIS OWN ATTORNEY, Myers stumbled and froze up. He said during the last two years he's been "in a haze" from dealing with all the grievances and, gee, he couldn't remember his own term in office. Just a moment. Let him think...

Questioning came around to the voice vote at the annual JACC meeting in October, 2008. This was the vote which delayed JACC elections. Myers--who clearly lives in his own alternate reality--says the concern about delaying elections involved Browne not "doing a good job" and so elections should be postponed. There was concern about the "poor product" of Mr. Browne with the board elections. Myers said "We went ahead with officer elections to comply with the bylaws."

Asked next about physical "fracas" involving Jerry Moore on the night of elections, Myers said he missed the fracas because his vehicle slid on ice and hit a concrete barrier, with the car facing (ass) backwards into oncoming traffic.

Did you tell your mother about this accident? Jill Clark asked. The mother you share with blogger Johnny Northside?

Ben was forced to admit that--heartless and self-involved prick that he is--he never told our mother, and she'd probably have to find out secondhand after his testimony on the stand.

Myers said he communicated with Moore that night, telling Moore to go directly to the Myers home. That would be the Myers home where Ben Myers has let the taxes go for quite a while, now, unless he paid the taxes recently, who knows? Anyway, Moore went to the Myers home, and the police came there, too. Moore was not arrested.

Myers spoke of the "removal of officers" at the January 14 meeting, how it was "contrary to the bylaws." Myers said it was "eerie" to see Browne, an attorney, "pushing this violation of the bylaws."

You want to talk "eerie," Brother Ben, there's plenty of water from Lake Eerie in that cult Kool Aid you and your clique has been drinking. You sued somebody for filing a complaint with the State Bar Association. You claim to be the Vice Chair of the neighborhood association while you don't pay the taxes on your house. You take the Fifth Amendment when somebody asks you where the JACC office equipment is. EERIE? Take a look in the mirror, you cross-eyed freak.

Jill Clark introduced Exhibit 27 which--from the context--seemed to be the "Old Majority" agenda introduced at the meeting of January 14, 2008, the one the "New Majority" rejected in favor of their own agenda. The moment was anti-climactic. Jill Clark then turned over Ben Myers to the loving embrace of Defense Attorney David Schooler's cross examination, which bears more resemblance to a crucifix than a cross, and I say that as a compliment.

If Schooler were a boxer, his style would be to dance around if the other boxer is weak, put on a show for the crowd because, after all, they're paying money to watch a fight. This is the style he used with dear, sweet, sorely deceived E.B. Brown. But with Ben Myers--a much stronger opponent--Schooler comes boiling out of his corner of the ring and tries to land a hay maker.

Schooler handed Myers a thick bound document, and referred Myers to the bottom of page 78. The weighty document was Ben Myers' deposition. That would be the deposition where Myers said he didn't know what Jerry Moore's contact said, and how he thought the contract was at the "JACC house." (JACC headquarters)

Myers was forced to answer that he'd never produced the contract for the JACC board. That would be the contract for the executive director. The most major expense for the JACC organization. Never. Gave. It. To. The. Board.

"If we comb the minutes," Schooler asked. "Will we find reference to board approval of Mr. Moore's contract?"

Myers' answer was a ride on a slip-n-slide. Much can be avoided by complaints about the inadequacy of the JACC minutes. Does anybody in the Jordan Neighborhood have a LAPTOP? The Hawthorne Housing Committee does things a different way.

I'm just sayin'.

"By what authority did you sign Moore's contract?" Schooler asked. Demanded.

By his authority as board chair, Myers answered. But Myers asserted he thought there was indeed board approval for Myers to negotiate the contract, and he claims he had authorization from the board to sign the contract.

But is it in the MINUTES? Schooler pressed.

Myers couldn't say it was. He had to agree it SHOULD be.

As to the fight, Schooler asked, "Wouldn't it be grounds for termination to PUNCH somebody?" Myers--who picked up a thing or two in law school--said when he's asked a question like that, "My mind doesn't go to a place of answering yes or no, but a place of asking questions. Was it a case of self-defense?

I think it may be necessary to say at this point the next sentence is NOT parody: Myers said "knowing Mr. Wagner's history" that Myers can't say punching Wagner is an "inappropriate response."

Yeah, that's pretty much what I was thinking last night as I sat around drinking and eating buffalo steak with Mr. Wagner in the yard of a neighbor near the Jordan Pond. I thought, "How much I'd like to just haul off right now and PUNCH THIS GUY." Don't turn your back on Denny Wagner. He's a total BACK PATTER.

Schooler pointed out that, during the termination vote, Myers didn't "call time out" and go fetch the contract.

"The full board voted on the side of Moore's termination, didn't they?"

Myers had to concede that point. Damn majority rule.

Referring to Exhibit 16, Schooler asked, "What provision of this contract would save Moore's job?"

Myers held the document up close to his face and spent a while looking...and finally came up with, oh gee, the term of the contract, the 3 year period.

"Did you raise THAT issue at the meeting?" Schooler asked.

Myers said the board majority just REMOVED Moore.

Don't pull your hand away from the nail while I'm putting it in, said Schooler. YOU NEVER CITED THAT PROVISION, DID YOU?

Myers answered that he cited the ENTIRE AGREEMENT. That would be the entire agreement the board had NEVER SEEN and, indeed, some doubted its EXISTENCE. Some still doubt its existence, considering Exhibit 16 to be an ex post facto creation of Myers, et al. There's no proof of that. There's little proof against that, either, as far as I can see except, oh gee, the word of Ben Myers and Jerry Moore.

"You never brought the contract forward from then until the present?" Schooler pressed.

"It wouldn't have mattered," Ben said, and his tone grew whiny. "They didn't care."

"You NEVER EVER ONCE handed the contract to the Jordan Area Community Council board from January 14 to the present?" Schooler pressed.

Myers remained silent, eyes downcast.

How tragic it is when lawyers eat their own. Ben was pretty much Schooler's lunch at that point, or something worse than lunch, something so much lower and more foul.

Pour Ben in a bucket and call him shark chum.

"Let's move on," Judge Porter said, drawing the curtain on THAT sad little episode.

More to follow in the next few days...


Anonymous said...

More to follow now please.

Anonymous said...

U can't lead the people if U steal from the people.

Anonymous said...

It is becoming very apparent to me that Ben & Jerry may not have ever been told that JACC was a community organization and not a life-long endowment (to them) to do with as they saw fit.

As this trial progresses and more of the information comes-out, I am becoming a firm believer in reincarnation.

In another life, Myers was born at Gasthof zum Pommer, in Austria-Hungary on April 20th, 1889 and Moore was born as Joseph Goebbels with a totally different agenda.

In his last life-agenda Moore went after the Jews. This time around he's after the Gentiles as well. Myers life-agenda remained pretty much the same....

Believe it or not they are both big proponents of consensus-building... There methodology is just a little whacked-out. They eliminate anyone that doesn't agree with them and eventually they reach a consensus....

Anonymous said...

I'm a total addicting.

More now please.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

To anon @ 1136am

I have been thinking the same thing - this material can't even be MADE up, and Johnny's writing is so addicting.

Please keep the parody writing coming. I think Ben, Jerry and others will keep the material coming.