Lee’s comments showed he has ‘sold his soul’
by Mike Boyce
September 02, 2014 04:00 AM | 1979 views | 21 21 comments | 16 16 recommendations | email to a friend | print
In their Commentary in the Aug. 26 MDJ, “Having experienced advisor was key to the Braves deal,” senior Cobb Chamber of Commerce VP Brooks Mathis and Cobb Commission Chairman Tim Lee admitted to their complicity as the “engineers” of the secret negotiations between Lee, the Cobb Chamber and the Atlanta Braves.

Reading their remarks, I had the impression they gave the same weight to this clandestine effort to subvert open government in Cobb as they did to arranging a surprise birthday party. The column should have been titled “Confessions of the Clueless” or at least “The Ends Justifies the Means.”

Perhaps the reason Mathis-Lee don’t want to “glance in the rearview mirror,” is to avert seeing the bodies of representative government and reputations they drove over to grab the Braves. Let me give these victims faces and personalize the damage Mathis-Lee have done to this county by their thoughtlessness.

The first are the Cobb Chamber of Commerce, which named Lee their Man of the Year, and this newspaper, whose publisher presented Lee with the award. Think of the untenable situation this has placed both institutions in by recognizing a man who believes government works best when it does so in secret.

Lee’s rationale and explanation for hiring Dan McRae off the books was akin to Richard Nixon’s observation that “when the president does it, that means that it is not illegal.”

Was it a Freudian slip when Lee compared his seeking advice from McRae “to calling your uncle who happens to be a master plumber” about a spigot? Lest we forget, every one of Nixon’s “plumbers” went to jail.

The second casualty was the Cobb Board of Commissioners. Admiral Arleigh Burke, one of the most famous naval commanders in World War II, once wrote that the “integrity of a society or a group is approximately equal to the lowest common denominator of its people. When the standards are lowered for an individual, the standards of the group or society to which the individual belongs are lowered.”

Lee, as a member of the board, has brought the adage “guilt by association” into play and given affirmation to the negative stereotypes about politicians. By his actions, he has sullied the reputation of every member of the board. They must now consider the consequences of failing to respond to the chairman’s brazen challenge — his use of outside consultants to perform county work without the advice and consent of the board.

The final sacrifice in this whole sordid matter is the public. If there is any better reason why more people don’t vote, it’s the actions of the chairman. I originally thought the reason he wanted a quick decision from the board to accept the Braves deal was that he saw the voters as being inconvenient. Now, it turns out he just simply doesn’t trust his commissioners — or at least some them — and by extension us, the voters. If his action stands without consequences, the people have the right to ask why bother voting or becoming involved in government.

The Mathis/Lee column misses the point that this controversy is not about what we get for the Braves, but instead how we got them. Lee’s assertion that the true nature of the secret negotiations is really a matter of “semantics” is laughable.

The air needs to be cleared on this controversy and the Board of Commissioners need to stop standing by legalisms, go into executive session and decide if there is enough abuse to merit sanctions — if not a request for a special grand jury. They should be guided by the words in Mark 8:36: “What does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul?”

By his co-writing last week’s commentary, the chairman has shown that he has already sold his soul.

Retired Marine Col. Mike Boyce of east Cobb ran unsuccessfully in 2012 for Cobb Commission chairman.
Comments
(21)
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Mr. Boyce
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September 05, 2014
I just read something that reminded me of you, Mr. Boyce. It was sent by a Christian friend. "Avoid using the WORD to speak against yourself or to gossip about others."

Your comment "“What does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul?”, which was said about the Cobb Chairman, and who is known by friends as faithful Christian man with whom you have political differences, was so offensive. I cannot help but think it likely embarrassed many of your Christian friends and students of God's Word.
anonymous
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September 02, 2014
Tim Lee and Barack Obama. Two elected officials who refuse to let laws and the electorate stand in they way of what they want to do.

Gotta love the way the Cobb RINO establishment has honored the occasion of our first half black/half white president by thrusting Tim Lee on Cobb voters so he could exact his big government, tax 'em more crony ways on us all.

Thank you, republican pukes!

Kevin Foley
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September 03, 2014
"Half black/half white president..." - it's understandable why the gutless racist who wrote that doesn't want his name known.

I'll have more on that Friday.
anonymous
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September 03, 2014
Racist? Heck, given the sideways and less than flattering critique that was being meted out to the current (historic)president, if I'd said the first "black president", you would have been bent out of shape for my not having pointed out that his white ancestry was at least as responsible as his black ancestry for any shortcomings that this leadership may exhibit.

In short, goofs like you would have called me a racist for placing ALL of the "blame" on his "African American" roots.

You are clueless, Foley (whoever you are).

So looking forward to Friday. I feel certain you can make it equally as mindless as today.

Cheers!

Ben Twomey
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September 04, 2014
Kevin, you are the last person to be calling anybody a racist. As was amplo\y demonstrated by your column last week, you are nothing but a race baiting shill for liberals.

You established your place in the racist hall of fame with that one.
Laura Armstrong
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September 04, 2014
"Thank you, republican pukes!"

Wow, you are obviously a Democrat, and a racist as well, for noting the president's "half black-half white" DNA.

Interesting how Kevin Foley, in today's paper version, automatically assumes you are a conservative racist and calls you out for not signing your name, when in reality you out yourself by the line you wrote about "republican pukes."

Foley, can you read? Try again, bud. You missed this boat.
Samuel Adams
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September 04, 2014
And Foley is going to write an entire Friday column based on the fallacious rantings of someone who is obviously NOT a "republican" by his own admission above.

Foley, how about a column based on something real, like the rise of the next Islamic caliphate in the middle east, the chopping off of children's heads and Obama's weak response and assertions that they are "JV."
anonymous
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September 06, 2014
RE: "Republican Pukes" - Of course. No one but a democrat could be upset with the fine way the Republican party (rino-ville) has been behaving (and not)...locally and nationally. Right?
Judge & Jury
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September 02, 2014
You seems to know Mark 8:36. Do you also know Matthew &: 1-5?



Do not judge, or you too will be judged For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.
Cobb Taxpayer
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September 02, 2014
Colonel Boyce is "spot on" ! I am bewildered as the "inaction" of the other four elected Cobb Commissioners - do they have no backbones or merely incapable of serving the needs of their office and the taxpayers? The 4 bankrupt commissioners are void of leadership and fortitude or does Lee have mystical powers over them ?
Held hostage
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September 03, 2014
Ott an Cupid have no power since the Chamber controls 3 votes. Weatherford backed Lee on this issue even while admitting he didn't know all the facts. The BoC is powerless until November 2016. We now live under a County Dictatorship with one man controlling 3 votes, the budget, and the agenda. And he breaks the rules when he wants to and flaunts those that challenge him.
Kevin Foley
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September 02, 2014
Mr. Boyce offers an excellent assessment of Lee's behavior. I would only add that the taxpayers in Cobb County, where the median household income is $65,000, ought to be asking why $400 million of their dollars are being handed over to Braves' owner, the Liberty Media Corporation, which has a market cap in excess of $15 BILLION.

As I have noted, this is a perfect example of 21st Century Republican politics in action: take from the middle class and give to billionaires.

Ben Twomey
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September 02, 2014
It ain't a partisan political issue, Kevin. Stick to the facts in the issue and you are right. Don't drag politics into it. Do you really think the Democratic mayor of Atlanta isn't in for a piece of ths pie?
THE TRUTH
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September 02, 2014
I am so certain this editorial comes from Mr. Boyce's undying loyalty to our county, his adherence to the rule of law and not from his wanton lust for political relevance and a future race he intends on running. Mike in your push for transparency your motives are just that, clear as crystal.
@@truth
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September 02, 2014
Show us where anything Mike Boyce said is untrue. Whether or not he has any additional ambitions has nothing to do with the truth as you were so quick to call your post. The facts are very clear as to what Tim Lee did regardless of anyone's ambitions.

Why not take off your TL rose colored glasses and see the REAL TRUTH
Rich Pellegrino
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September 02, 2014
The Truth...ha, ha...it is a common tactic to attack the messenger when what he is saying is the truth which you don't want to hear or be revealed....who cares who says it...a third grader knows that this Chairman and his cohorts are corrupt and that the old "Cobb Way" is unraveling in front of our eyes!

Good riddance...and it is time for everyone, including the other commissioners, to decide if they stand on the side of corruption or the truth.
Papermill gal
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September 04, 2014
Col. Boyce does have a love of our country and its formerly principled leadership. He has proved this through years of service in uniform, personal sacrifice and hardship and is not deserving of your cynical political rantings.

If ANYONE deserves a shot at governing this community, it's Mike Boyce, not some half-baked "consultant" who couldn't find a job in the private sector without some kind of quid pro quo as an elected official and representative of an artificial turf company.

Your post is clearly the first of a Chamber of Commerce "Defend Tim Lee" pile on!!!
My Uncle the Plumber
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September 02, 2014
Lee's deception began the day he learned of the opportunity, by using his kitchen cabinet of advisors in place of BoC approved counsel and staff.

Lee's coverup began the day after the announcement to the public. By not responding to Open Records requests, he states his position:

I am Tim Lee. Stop looking over my shoulder. I know what is best. I don't need the BoC. I don't want citizen input. I will decide who will negotiate for the county instead of some process involving your "laws" and "code". You don't need to know what goes on behind the scenes, because you are not very smart, and it would confuse you.
Baseball fan
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September 04, 2014
Interesting how state Rep. Earl Ehrhart escapes any kind of scrutiny here. The good old boys reward even the RINOs when it's something that will benefit their clique. They compromise their conservative principles and 20 years of credibility goes right out the window. At least some of us know the truth.
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