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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on January 28, 2009 8:51 AM. The previous post in this blog was Portland nuked. The next post in this blog is The mayor's minions. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Sam Adams, slander artist?

The mayor of Portland has proven time and again that he cannot be trusted to tell the truth about his own conduct. But it does not stop there. Today, the WW reports that recently he also falsely suggested that John Vezina, one of the people who had correctly accused him of having sex with his teenage "friend with benefits," had done so because the mayor had accused Vezina of trying to rape the young man. WW has posted the audio of these remarks here and here.

This hearkens back to a statement that Adams made in his pathetic interview with the the O's editorial board last week. The subject of Bob Ball came up -- this is the guy who correctly blew the whistle on Adams's teeny bopping back in September 2007, when Adams was running for mayor. At the time, Adams lashed out at Ball for conducting a smear campaign that reinforced unfair stereotypes of gay men.

In the O interview (starting at around 5:00), the editors press Adams for an apology to Ball, whose political career was destroyed in the incident. Adams refuses. He says, "Ball was trying to take me out," then gets interrupted by an O staffer, and then, at 6:35, says, "I resented the fact that he tried to portray it as only concerned about Beau, when anyone who you talk to on the ground floor will tell you otherwise. And he himself had vulnerability on this issue in his own life and he knew that this was a fellow gay man."

Mayor Adams meets with Oregonian editorial board part 1

Again, responding to proven truths about himself with accusations against others. What a guy.

Comments (35)

Hey, it's all good dude, cuz you know, he's like progressive 'n' stuff.

Barf.

Someone forgot to tell Sam that "Nixonian" is not a compliment.

I think the WW article talks about an alleged rape "attempt."

This just gets uglier and uglier every day.

Can someone please report on the O'Reilly Factor piece last night? I don't get that channel. Thanks.

Wow, I don't know, man. That was one stressful interview for me to watch and for him to give (I imagine). I'm not really believing the mayor on his characterization of Ball's allegation (sex with a minor) and his denial of that allegation. Check out the big gulp he makes when answering this question. There's a dissonance between his words, his unconscious movements, and my perception of all of it.

How many lies has that guy told in his life? How many more will he tell?

This guy is a full-on sleaze bag. He must go...soon.

Audaciously,

The O'Reilly Factor's coverage was pretty weak in my opinion. You can find it here:

http://www.billoreilly.com/show;jsessionid=B7227A20E1EDF99F3D77783E61316867?action=viewTVShow&showID=2240#4

I was a little disappointed.

Making out in the City Hall men's room at what was essentially a work function. Attacking anyone who calls him out on his misdeeds. A past personal bankruptcy. Financial engineer of the SoWhat debacle.

This is now beyond making me sick...it's becoming PATHETIC.

This man has a history of bad decisions and apparently no ability to control his impulses. This is the man we want leading the city in one of the most fiscally-challenging eras in memory?

We need an organized recall campaign. This individual should not be in a position of power. He's proven time and time again that he cannot use it efficiently and that he has no regard for those effected by it - other than himself.

Someone get the recall campaign started now.

Reggie

Thanks, PDX Native. It sounds like I didn't miss much.

Reggie, there is already a recall effort underway.

The strangest part is those who support Sam because either (a)they have a financial interest in it, or (b)they believe, perversely, that Portland somehow can't function, thrive, or survive without Adams in city government.

what a poor self-esteem we seem to have.

this town needs an enema, a cleansing of its bowels. and, more simply, a gut check. balls. a sense of ethics and ideals about local government that isn't bent simply because it's expedient to do so.

time to be honest with yourself, Adams supporters. why *are* you supporting him? if you say he's only human, you're missing the point. it's not about Adams--it's about the duty and responsibility of the office.

and are we to believe that there's simply nobody other than Adams with skill, talent, and vision? good lord. seriously.

Living down state from Portland, I hadn't heard about most of this until it began to explode. Being naturally suspicious whenever the media goes after someone for gay sex, I was sympathetic to start, but that's changing as I hear more about his shoddy politics. This isn't just about sexual orientation but ethics in all areas. It does sound like it's time for a recall in Portland.

I believe Sam has that Karl-Rove-like ability to force the hands of those around him. When this happens you either go along and start being an ally out of fear and necessity or you're identified as an opponent and await the next move where Sam tries to crush you. Of course, there's a little cult love going on too. Over at Blue Oregon they are tying themselves in knots avoiding the indefensible parts of this.

At some point - and it's probably already happened - they're going to realize what a craven bastard the guy really is. I mean they bemoan this smear that's befallen their noble leader and give Sam a pass when he tried to smear another gay man to the Oregonian. Then they write posts about DOUBLE STANDARDS.

Kari, I believe you have a keen eye for situations. Do you really want to assist Sam as he brings the Democratic Party in Oregon to such a sleazy level?

And Beau, you're looking at a fortune that you earned the hard way. All you have to do is cut these old guys loose, sue the city and tell the truth. You should also question whether your lawyer has taken your interests completely to heart.

What I take from this story is that Nigel is into the emails. Perhaps there's some hidden text messages, or emails somewhere that will bring all this into focus.

As for Bill O'Reilly: I love it when the sex scandal touches on whether there was a workplace relationship. You know he hates even going near that.

As for me: I've recovered from my initial anger at having this trample on the Inauguration, and I'm now trying to profit from it. Is this a wonderful country, or what?

I’m curious to know if there are any sociologists who post here who could enlighten me as to why so many Adam’s supporters, particularly those in the gay community, keep portraying this scandal as a one-time lapse of judgment. Does it have to do with “in-group” thinking? From my perspective, there are 3 phases to this scandal:

Phase 1: the initial relationship with Breedlove (pre-18 and post-18), which highlights questionable judgment and possible illegal behavior.

Phase 2: the cover-up (lies, attacks on opponents, asking others to lie), which shows a willingness to engage in unethical behavior for political gain.

Phase 3: damage control (hiding out at home, avoiding the press and citizens of Portland), which shows a lack of leadership and an inability to function under pressure.

Granted, I didn’t vote for Adams and, despite being a gay man, feel no loyalty to him. But still, even the most generous interpretation of these events show, at the very least, a pattern of troubling behavior.

And one request: if there is a god, please don't let the outcome of the official investigation come down to a Clintonesque parsing of whether a 1-minute kiss with a 17 year-old meets the definition of "sexual."

Almost as disgusting as Adams' callous disregard for "the good of the city", is the cowardly behavior of the council. They have an obligation to act NOW. Waiting, hiding and hand wringing while months of a criminal investigation tears this city apart is dereliction at its worst.

If a criminal conviction is the threshhold for them to censure and call for Adams' resignation, then shame on them and blame on them for the damage done.

Fish should take this opportunity to step up as the only one not already lost.

Vkpdx I completely agree with all of your points. And as to;

And one request: if there is a god, please don't let the outcome of the official investigation come down to a Clintonesque parsing of whether a 1-minute kiss with a 17 year-old meets the definition of "sexual."

I can't imagine any adult, and especially a parent, walkinging into a public restroom and catch a 45 year old man kissing a 17 year old kid, whether male or female, and having a negative reaction to it. It is just wrong, wrong, WRONG! And then to have the abuser lie about it (again) and only admiting to it when the victim hinself speaks up.

I find Sam Adams despicable and want him recalled. Sooner than later.

In one word... Icky

~V~

"As for Bill O'Reilly: I love it when the sex scandal touches on whether there was a workplace relationship. You know he hates even going near that."

This is a "sex scandal" - Oh, I see. It is when it helps you get in a dig at O'Reilly.

Bravo.

When or where did Bob Ball "correctly" blow the whistle on Adams's affair with Breedlove? As I remember reading, Ball accused Adams of having sex sex with a minor. Both Adams and Breedlove deny that. You're saying Adams should apologize to Ball for levelling an accusation that Adams continues to assert is false?

Pace Vkpdx and Roner, it doesn't seem to me there's any deep sociological component to any of this. Those who didn't like Adams before (even if they held their noses and voted for him) dislike him even more now. Those who did like Adams probably like him less, but still think he's the best person for the job. What's so tough about that? Vkpdx is laboring under the impression that everyone who voted for Adams thinks he was perfect ("engage in unethical behavior for political gain..." OMG!!!! Show me a politician who hasn't); and Roner seems to think qualified mayorial candidates grow on trees and are ripe for the picking. Adams won the seat in the primary, running against about a dozen others, without needing a run-off. Clearly, a majority of Portlanders did feel Adams was the best person for the job. Whether they still do is a moot point until someone steps forward as a viable alternative. Offhanded suggestions, which I'm sure everyone here could come up with, are meaningless unless one of those people suggested is willing and able to make a run for it.

Really, people, until you're willing to put your money where your mouths are, get out there and help mount a credible challenge to Adams's mayorship, you're just coming off like spoiled brats who didn't get their way. No doubt you're taking your cues from Jack, who's demonstrated and continues to demonstrate a tendency to play fast and loose with the facts as they are known if he doesn't like them.

The rest of us, we live in the real world, where you need evidence to prove accustations, and where elections come down to a choice between people who want the job.

When or where did Bob Ball "correctly" blow the whistle on Adams's affair with Breedlove?

Ball said that Adams and Breedlove had sex. Adams denied it. It turns out, Adams was lying.

cc,
I think we can call this a sex scandal. I mean are you saying it isn't? The point was that if it's consensual between adults that shouldn't be the reason you go. If. When people say it's not about sex, they mean the reasons Sam should resign: The abuse of power, etc... This was a sex scandal. You get that part right? I mean Sam wasn't offering the kid a job in city government.

As far as taking a shot at Bill O'Reilly, I watched last night, and I thought I saw a flicker of recognition in his eyes when the workplace came up. You do remember that, don't you? Bill rushed to the cameras and said he was a victim of an extortion attempt, or words to that effect, and he wasn't going to give in. Then the woman's lawyer implied they had it on tape complete with Foxworth-quality transcripts. Bill paid her a sum of money to go away and forget the whole thing. Do you remember that at all, or are you so protective of Bill O'Reilly that you've blocked that out?

"Vkpdx is laboring under the impression that everyone who voted for Adams thinks he was perfect ("engage in unethical behavior for political gain..." OMG!!!! Show me a politician who hasn't)"

Michael M., I don't think that those who voted for Adams thought him perfect (many of my friends and coworkers voted for him despite reservations), my issue is that his supporters seem quite willing to overlook Adam's blatant ethical violations. I would hate to think that some progressive Portlanders view the CoP Code of Ethics in the same way Bush viewed the constitution, i.e., as just "a goddamned piece of paper."

a tendency to play fast and loose with the facts

This pretty much proves my point. A Sam Adams supporter responding to the utter ethical and moral bankruptcy of his hero by accusing others.

Really, people, until you're willing to put your money where your mouths are, get out there and help mount a credible challenge to Adams's mayorship, you're just coming off like spoiled brats who didn't get their way.

irony.

...and I voted for Adams. the only "way" I didn't get was ethical leadership.

...and if our standard of ethics for political leaders is "hey, what leader *doesnt* lie?", then we're screwed.

Bill,

If you think this is a sex scandal, well, who am I to disagree?

As for O'Reilly, I've never watched his show in my life - again, whatever you say, Bill.


Over at Blue Oregon they are tying themselves in knots avoiding the indefensible parts of this. At some point - and it's probably already happened - they're going to realize what a craven bastard the guy really is. I mean they bemoan this smear that's befallen their noble leader and give Sam a pass when he tried to smear another gay man to the Oregonian. Then they write posts about DOUBLE STANDARDS.

The discussion at Blue Oregon has actually been rather mixed; last time I looked, an informal poll there indicated close to a 50/50 split as to whether Adams ought to resign. Some commenters there are definitely outraged about Adams' ethics. Blue Oregon also seems to have attracted quite a lot of salacious commentary from people making dumb quips about sex, and accusing Adams of being a pedophile. One wonders if the wingnutosphere hasn't got some sort of alert out telling all right thinkers to head on over to Blue Oregon.

On the other hand, I have seen a grand total of one comment supportive of Adams on this blog. That comment's in this thread.

I'd like to see Adams resign, but that's no reason to misrepresent the commentary on various websites.

Actually, the story is like this:

"He'd heard rumors, Ball told Leonard, that the most likely candidate for mayor, City Commissioner Sam Adams, had been in a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old legislative intern."

That differentthan "Ball said that Adams and Breedlove had sex."

Ball also said this: "In an interview last week, Ball said that he'd never heard the rumor and denied he had told it to anyone."

You know what gets me about this? People have known about all of Adams's other ethical lapses. You've known that he would be incompetent in his stated position, and that he'd do nothing other than hire his buddies into City Hall. You've known since the Vera Katz days that this guy was Bad News. Jack did a great job of pointing this out, but nobody paid any attention, and the weasel became Mayor.

Now, after knowing all of this, the only way that the general electorate gets angry enough to do anything to get him the hell out of office is thanks to a sex scandal. Is it only because he was boinking teenagers that suddenly this is a concern, or is it that only a scandal involving reproductive organs could get everyone to turn off the Battlestar Galactica reruns and, you know, pay attention to the people who want political power?

One wonders if the wingnutosphere hasn't got some sort of alert out telling all right thinkers to head on over to Blue Oregon.

And you'd be the only "one".

...but that's no reason to misrepresent the commentary on various websites.

Interesting juxtaposition, that.

"How many lies has that guy told in his life?"

Uh, you realize we are talking about over 20 years of public service?

So who files the first slander/libel law suit? Ball or Vezina?

I mean neither is a public figure and Sam did state this stuff on record - I am not a lawyer, but what else do you need?

"You're saying Adams should apologize to Ball for levelling an accusation that Adams continues to assert is false?"

No he should apologize for a story that he constructed out of whole cloth and decided to make a public record of without any need to.

From what I understand, Ball went to Leonard and not to the press to say Sam's relationship might be an issue.

Leonard then ran like a lapdog to Sam and either one or both decided they needed to go public when they could have no commented. Rather they decided to take the road of running it up the flag pole (finally a metaphor with only one meaning.)

This morning my 9 year old son told me about his disturbing dream last night. Gangs of teen-agers were going around and grabbing younger kids and doing mean things to them. My guess is the two main news events: The deranged man shooting the teenagers and the mayor preying upon the teenager filtered into his subconscience. He had asked questions about the mayor when the news broke.

He lives in a censored household, but not a bubble. About two years ago, while he was taking swim lessons at the SW Community Center, news hit about the police arresting a freak from Wilsonville who was preying on the boys from the swim team via the locker room. So we had the discussion. You know the one-- don't let anybody touch your privates. Then recently, this past fall, we moved onto the Beaverton YMCA where my son is on a swim team. I won't soon forget the look on his face when he came out with his eyes and mouth wide, trying to tell me that a man had touched a boy there. Again, another freak is arrested. Now, the fathers stand vigilant in the locker rooms/bathroom.

For all of you who try to whitewash this sad state of affairs. It is a sex/ethics scandal. Sam is a politician, not to be confused with a leader.

Not implying anything, but there is a song out there about ...politicians whipping boys gagged and bound.

Sick and sad all of this. Step down Sam.

Joe Bob,
I'm talking about the posts, not the comments. You can't hold a blog responsible for the comments. Just scan down the list of posts. Now look at all the media attention this is getting. I think they're tied up in knots over there because they know the information is hard to defend without sounding insane. Just putting out a poll question is not taking a stand.

Kari's first instinct was to make this a "we all make mistakes dating" thing, but he's less forthcoming on Sam's smears of other gay men, and the potential abuse of power charges. Where are the posts defending Sam on this stuff?

I don't blame them. If they had positive points to make there would be a new post every 15 minutes - not discussions of rent and jobs. This is their time - a national story about a Democratic politician from right here in Portland. Where's all the posts? Sometimes it's easier to maintain credibility by not speaking at all.

Sometimes it's easier to maintain credibility by not speaking at all.

A lesson there for all of us, no doubt.

"He didn't look 17."

Nice...maybe I'll try that next time.

"He didn't look 17."

note that even after realizing that, he "kissed" him at least twice, once in a City Hall men's room. oh, and doing it after telling Breedlove he "wasn't interested ina relationship".

tell me, Adams supporters--how in the heck is a City Council member making out with an underage teen in the City Hall men's room--while at work--"nobody's business"?

and where is the "open and honest" that Adams promised?

I remembered (and just went back and re-read the articles from last summer/fall) that Ball told Leonard that Adams had a relationship with a minor. I think we all know now that this is true.


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Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus - The Nanny Diaries
Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
F. Sionil Jose - Dusk
Natalie Babbitt - Tuck Everlasting
Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
Mark Herrmann - The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law
Barry Glassner - The Gospel of Food
Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
James McManus - Positively Fifth Street
Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

Miles run year to date: 62
At this date last year: 144
Total run in 2016: 155
In 2015: 271
In 2014: 401
In 2013: 257
In 2012: 129
In 2011: 113
In 2010: 125
In 2009: 67
In 2008: 28
In 2007: 113
In 2006: 100
In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
In 2003: 269


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