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NUMBER 121 - AUGUST 14, 2019

Copyrighted:  2011,2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019

Far too much time has gone by without a resolution of whether or not Joe Carollo was ever in the U.S. Marines, and while the answer to that question is important, there needs to be some refocusing on what Joe Carollo has been up to recently, and why this question about whether he lied about his military service is a distraction that either on purpose, or just through happenstance has taken folks attention away from far more serious issues.

So first, let be clear about Carollo and the question of whether he was ever in the U.S. Marines, and the whole issue of Stolen Valor.

I have never used those words in my stories because I don't believe that he has done anything that would prompt a criminal investigation into that crime being committed.

The Stolen Valor Act of 2013, is a specific federal crime and involves the wearing, or claims of being awarded one of 12 combat medals.  I have not found any evendence, nor do I believe there is any evidence he ever did that, or even for that matter made a claim of any military service during any of his campaigns for public office.

So, no one is going to arrest him, or charge him with that crime.

What he did, if he did it, is just do what politicians do all the time. He lied as a way to enhance his resume.

That in and of itself is not a crime, because politicians lie all the time, and as Miami Dade-County Circuit Judge Judge De La O, wrote in his October opinion on the lawsuit that Carollo filed against Francis Suarez over the referendum ballot question of Strong Mayor, "This court cannot, and will not, be the watchdog for accuracy in politics."

I have no answer as to why either Carollo hasn't stepped forward with ANY documentation that would establish that he was in the U.S. Marines, nor do I have an answer of why Colonel Klink hasn't stepped forward either to defend Carollo, if he was in the Marines, or denounce him if he wasn't.

But as important as this issue might be, it is secondary to the issues that I raised in stories that I did just before this issue erupted, and which I believe have now been largely ignored or overlooked.

Below are the two critical stories that I believe deserve and require a lot more attention by the news media.

The first one is the issue of the Miami Parking Authority issuing checks from their bank account to pay for talent and production costs for Carollo's Last Friday Concerts in Little Havana.

What I failed to include in my original story is that Carollo, like all the commissioners received $250,000 for Special Events - in his case events such as these Friday night concerts.

So, on top of the $250,000 that he should have used to finance these activities, he strong-armed Art Noriega to give him $39,200, as of the time of my story to cover some of these costs, and that fails to include another $3,150 to date that Noriega wrote off for Carollo's event taking over the parking lot behind Domino Park on Fridays.

To top it off, Noriega claimed that Carollo confided to him that he had other sponsors as well. Who were they? How much did they give Carollo?

And why did Martha Maza Victor find it necessary go on Facebook to claim that Carollo had stiffed her out of any payment for her services as the talent coordinator for these events.

She by the way is not the only person who allegedly claims to have been stiffed by Carollo.

This is a story that merits being covered by the news media, but not a word has appeared in the Miami Herald, New Times, the Community News, or any of the TV stations about any of this.

What's up with that? Why hasn't anyone gone to the City Manager and gotten him to explain how all of this is going on in, "His city?"

I also have to take to task Joey Flechas for his coverage of the firing of Richie Blom, Carollo's  former Chief of Staff, and point out that the public was not served well by his failure to provide them with a lot more information than he did.  

Not only did he NOT provide the readers of the Miami Herald with copies of Blom's emails which in this day and age represents a huge failure of responsibility to a newspaper's readership when it comes to including copies of any and all relevant documents as part of any story appearing on the web version of a newspaper, but if you read the actual emails written by Blom - that are below - you have to ask why didn't Flechas go to the City Manager and ask him what he had done after he was informed through Blom's emails that Carollo was engaging in "Profanity laden rants," withone of his department directors, and a representative of the Miami Marlins.

What the fuck is up with that?

The public is entitled to know what a guy who they are paying $265,000 a year, plus benefits, does when he's informed that city employees who he's responsible for, and a representative of a major sports team and major property owner in the city are being verbally abused inside of City Hall, and a reporter worth his salt would make it a point to try and find out and let his readers know.

Here is the portion of Blom's July 1st email where he describes these incidents     

"As I pointed out previously, I've witnessed your profanity laden rants when I've greeted people in the District 3 office who, for whatever reason, were not welcome there. One was a city department director and the other individual was a representative of the Miami Marlins. I continued to work closely with these individuals but made it a point to meet at a location other than our city hall office in order to avoid the unpleasantness that I've had to endure in the past. I also do my best to keep up with your “persona non grata” list."

You would think after reading just this paragraph, another significant question that a news reporter would want to get an answer to, and maybe inform his readers was that the commissioner had/has a "persona non grata" list.

Whose on that list?

Imagine if Woodward and Bernstein back in the day learned that President Richard Nixon had an "enemies list," and then just decided that letting the readers know that such a list existed wasn't important?  

Again, what the fuck is up with that?

These stories are not just incidental incidents engaged in by Carollo, but represent part of a persistent and continuing pattern of willfull and abusive misbehavior that the citizens of Miami should be told about on a daily basis if necessary by the local news media.

My readership does not reach the wider community that the Miami Herald, New Times, and the local TV stations reach, and there is no excuse for the failure of these supposed protectors of the public's interest to do a damn site better job of reporting on what is little more than a continuing enterprise of grifting and abuse of power at Miami City Hall.

The Miami Herald claims in their daily hustle for new subscribers, "With your support we can hold those in power accountable."

That's bullshit.

True, they'll spend tens of thousands of dollars investigating a pervert pedophile who operated in Palm Beach county, but they won't spend $10 on doing the same kind of in-depth investigating and reporting on Miami City Hall, or Miami-Dade County Hall.

Those buildings and those politicians are exempt from the kind of attention that they gave to Jeffrey Epstein, because in Miami, the largely Cuban politcal players are protected by the Family and Friends Plan, even if they are as corrupt and crazy as Joe Carollo.

It's Miami, Bitches!