Saturday, February 6, 2016

U of L President Ramsey should be investigated and fired

Louisville, KY - It is far past time that U of L President James Ramsey leaves, voluntarily or involuntarily. He has been a mess for Kentucky since he first started working years ago. In Kentucky, as long as you are a good little Democrat, you get rewarded regardless of who you harm in the process. We are way too familiar with that game and it is time we end it. 

Why would I say all that anyway, right?
For starters Ramsey's fingerprints are all over everything wrong with Kentucky financially today. The Kentucky Pension crisis is one that many do not associate with Ramsey and yet he is the guy who created it.

Ramsey has been involved in Kentucky politics and his name crops up very often with an annoying list of scandals. If one  scandal arose we can forgive that, when multiple scandals arise we have to question whether Ramsey is incompetent or a crook. At least I do. It is logical.

Ramsey has the paper creds for sure. This from Wikipedia: He served twice as Kentucky's budget director and worked as the state government's chief economist. He has also directed Kentucky's Office of Financial Management, been the state's chief Economic Analyst, and worked in the Office of Investment and Debt Management. He also worked as interim commissioner of Kentucky's Office of the New Economy. For his work and expertise in economics, he was named Kentucky's Distinguished Economist of the Year in 1999 and won the National Governors Association's Outstanding Public Service Award in 2001.
Ramsey has also been an economics professor at five other universities: the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Loyola University, University of Kentucky, Western Kentucky University, and Middle Tennessee State University.
You will note that Wikipedia does not list his scandals on the page, with the exception of the latest U of L basketball one we will get to in a moment.
I love the BS awards they always give to people to act like they are important. Ramsey of course is important to the political machine so they had to build him up.
Let's start with the pension problem. 
After serving as Kentucky's Budget Director until 1998, when he moved to UNC, it didn't take long for Kentucky to rush to get him back here. Why was that?
According to a governor's press release from 1999: "One of Kentucky’s best and brightest is coming home," said Governor Paul Patton in announcing his successful effort to recruit former Budget Director Jim Ramsey back to state government. Ramsey left the Governor’s Office of Policy and Management in May 1998 to become vice chancellor of administration at the University of North Carolina as the university’s principal finance and business officer.

He was only gone one year. Very suspicious yet no one challenged that at the time. Yet what did Ramsey do when he "came back home?"

He destroyed the Kentucky pension plans that led to the train wreck we are in today. Ramsey under former Governor Paul Patton, who had scandals of his own at the time, decided to begin raiding State pension plans to balance the budget for the first time. It was under his direction that Patton decided to stop funding the plans with matching dollars as we had been doing since 1977.

Don't take my word for it. Former Kentucky Investment Committee member and Trustee, Chris Tobe, was actually removed by former Governor Steve Beshear for challenging the way we funded our retirement systems. Tobe was the only one with finance credentials. He outlined it all in his book "Kentucky Fried Pensions,".

Up until the Patton administration we were doing pretty good with our pensions. But of course when you want to spend money you don't have in Kentucky under Democratic leadership, you just steal it from somewhere else and in 2002 Governor Patton did just that, aided and abetted by his award winning economist James Ramsey. 

Today our pensions are second worst only to Illinois and we will soon take over the number one spot as worst.

But why bring all this up now? 

Because Ramsey has done quite well for himself, while screwing everyone else, all because he is a good little Democrat "team" player.

The reward for screwing Kentucky? A U of L appointment and that is where Ramsey has really proven his worth. Just a small list of the scandals under Ramsey show a pattern of behavior that he feels is acceptable while also believing he can't be touched. So far he has proven right on the latter.

Look at this:

Since at least 2003 millions of dollars have been stolen from the University by Ramsey people. Remember Robert Felner one of U of L's Dean's? He got away with $2.3 million and all during the allegations Ramsey stood by him. Ramsey knew the truth and put the University and all of Louisville under the microscope for no reason. At least in my opinion. Felner was convicted of a whole host of charges including mail fraud, money laundering, and more. He was just released in 2014 from federal prison.

Surely he learned a lesson from Felner right?

Not exactly. Executive VP of Health affairs David Dunn, and Chief IT officer Priscilla Hancock were both put on paid administrative leave in 2014 after the Courier Journal reported they were under FBI investigation.

Russell Bessette was yet another target and resigned in 2014.

What about Perry Chadwick Vaughn? Oh yeah, he was convicted and sentenced to 63 months.  

But why put up with it when anyone else would have been fired or investigated long ago? 

Why not address the real problem. James Ramsey himself. It is beyond ridiculous that there is seemingly always an FBI investigation at U of L ongoing, criminal indictments, people put in jail for illegal behavior, and yet the one constant in it all is never held accountable in Ramsey. Why?

As always follow the money.

Ramsey has been able to put together over $1 Billion for the University's personal slush fund, I mean "Foundation," and they spend it any way they want to. Need a raise for Ramsey? No sweat the Foundation will chip in. Want to take care of a couple of buddies? Sure we got it. And that is why he gets away with it all.

We hear the term these days repeatedly that someone is "too big to fail" or "too big to jail."

When you have money, or access to it, the rules of law apparently do not apply to you. Ramsey is part of that money class. 

Even J.D. Nichols went on record, after giving $10 million to the slush fund, er Foundation, that Ramsey's good outweighs the bad. And that folks is the paradox that leads us to the U of L basketball scandal.

A hooker comes out and admits to engaging in illegal behavior with a U of L assistant coach and who pays for it?

The current roster of players. Why? Because the NCAA says so.

Today the NCAA has started finally holding coaches accountable to a degree, but nowhere near enough. They serve a meaningless suspension and coach from home. No monetary loss. Athletic Directors get a free pass, and so do corrupt University administration officials. 

That is the rub. 

Why do players who have done nothing wrong have to pay the price for the real criminals who have? 

Because no one has ever forced the issue. But there are ways to do just that.

My friend Ed Martin made a post on his facebook page stating: "The State Constitution allows the legislature to reduce the salaries of state officials (although not retroactively). It should immediately reduce the salaries of all involved, including Ramsey, Jurich, and Pitino, for negligence of duty and leave the kids alone."

I agree. But how much will you wager that they would actually do it? 

But there is yet another way as well.

Why don't the current players who have to suffer from decisions by their so called leaders sue the hell out of them. The University, Coach Pitino, Tom Jurich, Andre McGee, any and all of them.

They signed on at U of L with the intent to be able to play post season, by not being allowed to, due to the negligence of others, it could potentially cost them millions in the NBA draft.

Every coach and recruiter has been on the record at some point bragging about how post season play will affect the outcome of the NBA draft for players, and now these innocent players are not allowed to showcase their skills in a setting favorable to aid them in their future endeavors. 

How many millions will it potentially cost them? .

Meanwhile, the scumbags who created this scenario are already playing there with no repercussions and the ones who are to be trusted to oversee all of this failed miserably in their jobs. Again.

Hey Card players, I have great lawyers call me ;-)

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