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Saturday, July 12, 2008

Fireman Randy's new gig

Looks like he's going to be running the Police Bureau come January 1. That ought to be interesting -- an-ex firefighters' union boss takes over management of the police force.

Comments (10)

Water cannons for the mentally ill?

Bigger fire extinguishers in every squad car?

Every cop gets a "firehouse buddy".

All you can eat spagetti on Wednesday nights?

More back injuries when temping at your bosses job?

Oh boy, if Randy runs the police dept look forward to more stupid, petty laws being thrust on police.

Instead of things like MAX crimes and drug sales, we'll get a city free of duct tape and spray paint sales. Oh well, at least they can look forward to a good pension.

I don't see how Commissioner Leonard could throw the police under the proverbial bus at any faster rate than Mayor Potter has done, over and over again, during his rein. I did have to laugh when Commissioner Leonard scolded the police for selectively enforcing laws. This should have disqualified him from running the police bureau as anyone with half a brain knows there are so many laws on the book you could go after everyone, everyday in the city for breaking one law or another.

This is going to be so brutal to watch. Especially once the cop on the street figures out that one of the politicians the Chief has been protecting them from is Randy. He is way more liberal on police practices than Potter ever was.

The first question is whether Rosie stays and gets fired or resigns and lets Randy appoint one of his old cop buddies as Chief.

Greg C

When I interviewed Randy for my magazine column about a year ago he indicated he was keen on being the police commissioner. He'd already been spending a lot of time on ride alongs, checking in at investigations, etc.

I think this decision is consistent with Adams' political astuteness. The PD is a real tar baby for the police commissioner (usually the mayor). Questionable shootings and excessive force complaints get folks mighty riled up. Although the buck will still ultimately stop with the mayor, Randy will take most of the flack and Sam will be one level removed.

Randy likes being a city commissioner and I think he would be happy to finish his career in his current post. Adams, on the other hand, is on a political career path. Being the mayor of Portland is another plum on his resume, but I don't think there's any doubt he aspires to higher office. Getting the police department out of his portfolio will help him maintain his teflon coating.

If he get the PPB, would you guys mind talking to him about the pink shirts?

I tried, but he thought I was joking.

Dave, you may want to be careful with he term "tar baby."

from Randomhouse's 1999 Word of the Day:


Several people have written:

I have come across the term "tar baby" recently. For example, a recent newspaper editorial mentioned the Clinton impeachment as a "tar baby" they'd have to get rid of before the 2000 elections. Another article, on a drug-policy Web site, mentioned the "medical marijuana tar baby" as an issue that the FDA had to deal with. What does the expression mean, and where does it come from?

The tar baby is a form of a character widespread in African folklore. In various folktales, gum, wax, or other sticky material is used to trap a person.

The folktale achieved currency in the United States in written form in one of Joel Chandler Harris's Uncle Remus stories, a collection of stories based on African-American folklore, narrated by the fictional Uncle Remus, a former slave. In the story "Tar-Baby," the character Brer Fox makes a doll out of tar, which he places by the road to entrap his enemy Brer Rabbit. Brer Rabbit talks to the doll, and when it doesn't answer, he hits it, and gets stuck in the tar. The more he struggles with it, the more he is entangled in it.

This story has led to the figurative use of tar baby in the sense 'an inextricable problem or situation', sometimes with the nuance 'something used to entrap a person'. Both the examples cited in the question show the use of this sense, which appears to be first used in the early twentieth century.

The expression tar baby is also used occasionally as a derogatory term for black people (in the U.S. it refers to African-Americans; in New Zealand it refers to Maoris), or among blacks as a term for a particularly dark-skinned person. As a result, some people suggest avoiding the use of the term in any context.

The combination of Randy with Sam as Mayor will be the undoing of Portland's finances.

Sam will be on perpetual excuse making and Randy will stick to his not so funny funny man schtick.

As a (retired) 25 yr officer, with 8 spent on the Executive Board of my police union, I feel Leonard will be an unmitigated disaster for the Police Bureau.

He doesn't have the temperment, it's obvious he lets his emotions overule whatever common sense he possesses.

He seems to have a chip on his shoulder, and wastes time & resources with his nutty personal jihads. In addition, he seems a rather dim bulb, who doesn't understand basic patrol technique and enforcement priorities.

As far as "disagreement being insubordination" - it's a shame I'm retired. I would love to educate him as to the free speech rights of union members in a pluralistic democracy.

But I'm old and slow now, thankfully out of the fight. However, it will be entertaining to watch. entertaining.

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