29 February 2012

Controversy over Pres. of Fish & Game Commission and the shooting of a cougar in Idaho

Here's how I see this controversy. (See this for details). If Daniel Richards were responsible for a Commission to Combat Child Abuse and posted his picture on a website touting his recent adventures (legal and on his own dime) with underaged prostitutes in Bangkok, the governor would be well within his powers to demand his resignation for conduct which was contradictory to and inconsistent with his legal charge. I see going to another jurisdiction and gloating over conduct which would be a serious crime in California, and the prohibition of which it is specifically the responsibility of the agency for which he is charged with oversight to enforce, is comparable. Gavin Newsom is right and when Governor Brown takes up the issue, he should publicly demand that Richards resign immediately.

If we can't hold appointed commissioners to higher standards than mere technical legality of their conduct, we need to enact some regulations that give the governor the power to require compliance with California's legal and ethical regime everywhere as a condition for continued tenure in office.

I find his defense, the usual bait and switch, particularly egregious, incidentally. He says what the "real problem" is is budget cuts to his agency. That's rich. Coming from a Republican; someone whose party and its obstructionist legislators are directly and exclusively responsible for the budget mess our state is in. It's just unbelievable. This guy's gotta go. 

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