By Steve Hunley
Jacobs Chief of Staff Investigated
Bryan Hair, Chief of Staff to Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs, is under investigation, along with Paul White, Director of the county’s Parks & Recreation Department. That is according to a press release issued from the mayor’s office. Hair had no experience in running much of anything that I am aware of and from what I can tell made few friends in the City-County Building. As everyone waits for the conclusion of the investigation, the folks rallying around the chief of staff are likely going to be far and few between.
I can’t help but think of the similarities developing between the administration of former county mayor Mike Ragsdale and current mayor Glenn Jacobs. Ragsdale had dreams of seeking the governor’s office, oblivious to the fact Knoxville City Mayor Bill Haslam intended to run. Ragsdale’s chief of staff was none other than Mike Arms, who was to good government to what Colonel Sanders was to the welfare of chickens.
The Ragsdale administration was mired in a purchasing card scandal that got uglier, as well as questionable use of funds. By the expiration of his term, nobody was sorry to see Ragsdale leave office, nor did anybody shed a tear with the departure of Mike Arms.
Tim Burchett was wildly popular in his own right and didn’t need Ragsdale, Arms and the usual suspects surrounding him. Unfortunately, Glenn Jacobs seemed all-too-willing to allow himself to be charmed by Arms and the gang. There have been persistent rumors Jacobs sees himself, as did Mike Ragsdale, as gubernatorial timber. Arms and company helped, if not instigated Jacobs’ effort to change the county charter to appoint the county law director, which appears to be headed for defeat in the November referendum. That will be yet another black eye for Jacobs while leftists in Knox County who are angry about the mayor’s disputes with the Board of Health place signs in their yards reading “The County Mayor is a Moron.”
Bryan Hair cites having worked in the 2006 campaign of former U. S. senator Bob Corker, but if true and he is currently 34 years old, that would mean he was a 20-year-old low ranking staffer. Perhaps the Jacobs folks looked to Mike Arms for political counsel and experience Hair didn’t have himself; if so, that has been a colossal mistake.
Whatever alleged transgressions were supposedly made by Bryan Hair and Paul White will trickle out to the news media over a period of time and will likely do nothing to help enhance Glenn Jacobs’ administration or popularity.
Knoxville & Seattle
What do Knoxville, Tennessee and Seattle, Washington have in common with one another? Both cities have at least two socialists on the City Council. Yet Seattle seems to be well on its way to economic ruin. Socialist legislators are reliably anti-business and almost always in favor of hiking taxes. Seattle’s local economy, like many others across the country, has taken a hit during the COVID-19 crisis. When corporate colossus Amazon declared its 60,000 employees in Seattle could work remotely, small businesses started foundering and many have closed as a result. Restaurants were particularly hard hit without the steady stream of customers coming in for lunch. What did the City Council in Seattle do to help? Well, they pushed a program called “JumpStart Seattle.” How did the City Council propose to jump start Seattle? Why, by funding more housing and some vaguely-worded policies about communities of color. Does that sound familiar? The Council legislation is funded by a payroll tax aimed at as many as 800 businesses in Seattle. One Councilwoman, Kshama Sawant brazenly bragged it was an “Amazon tax.” The majority of council-people dismissed concerns about increasing taxes during a pandemic, airily saying the businesses subject to the tax could well afford it, even during a pandemic crisis.
Amazon reacted by announcing it was moving 10,000 jobs from Seattle to Bellevue, Washington. Amazon also refused to renew a lease on a 180,000 square foot facility in downtown Seattle. An even bigger tax problem is looming over Seattle and Washington State as the legislature struggles to refresh a depleted unemployment fund. It is possible businesses may face a 700% increase in unemployment taxes in 2021. The latest unemployment tax doesn’t apply to those employees who work at home at least half the time and don’t reside inside the city of Seattle. Facebook, Amazon and Starbucks (which is based in Seattle) have all increased the number of their employees working remotely. Homelessness and crime are increasing concerns in Seattle, causing many to look to the suburbs. Yet Seattle’s City Council keeps taxing and spending and all they have to show for it is a city in serious decline. Imagine that.
Senator Ted Cruz of Texas has introduced legislation in Congress that might give some relief to folks in Seattle and elsewhere. Cruz is sponsoring the RECLAIM Act – – – the Restitution for Economic Losses Caused by Leaders Who Allow Insurrection and Mayhem. The Cruz bill would “hold state and local officials liable when rioters establish lawless ‘autonomous zones’ and officials abdicate their duties to protect their citizens.”
Social Media Censorship
The New York Post has broken a story about a laptop left at a Delaware computer repair shop, which appears to have email correspondence, videos, and pictures from Hunter Biden, son of Democratic nominee Joe Biden. The revelations are staggering and seem to refute Biden’s assertion he never discussed his son’s questionable overseas business dealings which even the Obama administration thought were at the very least problematic. Now Twitter and Facebook, social media giants, are locking down accounts linking to the story appearing in the Post. The reason they are doing so is purely because they don’t like the story, so they are exercising censorship.
The mainstream media has let Joe Biden skate through most of the election cycle and even Axios acknowledges, “Biden is the luckiest, least scrutinized frontrunner” in modern presidential election history.
Joe Biden has been testy, to say the least, when questioned about the shady business dealings of his son, Hunter. Biden has proudly detailed his insistence upon firing a Ukrainian prosecutor who was looking into Hunter’s payments from Burisma by threatening to withhold $1 billion in American aid.