Friday, February 15, 2008

Ragsdale's fall girls?

By now everyone who follows local politics in East Tennessee is aware that embattled Knox County Community Services Director Cynthia Finch has stepped down, and that she reportedly did so Wednesday night:

"During the course of the meeting with Mr. Arms and Mr. Troyer, there were a number of concerns discussed and brought to her attention. Evidently, as a consequence of looking at these concerns and issues that they brought to her attention, she felt this was the best decision for her," says Dwight Van de Vate, spokesman for Mayor Mike Ragsdale.

Ms. Finch, of course, had been among the worst offenders in the Knox County P-Card Affair, using her county card to purchase numerous personal items, including personal gas and health club memberships. Up to this point, Ragsdale and Arms have defended Finch-even joining in the whole "County Commission is racist" spectacle. Now, Finch is gone with very little fanfare.

It really makes the observer wonder: Was Ragsdale shielding Finch because she had dirt on the Mayor (and what dirt might they have had)? What did Margie Loyd know? Was Riquitta Bone made into Mike Ragsdale's office fall girl when it became apparent that the Purchase Card scandal could erupt into something bigger?

Obviously, I'm not the biggest fan of people filing discrimination charges to avoid taking personal responsibility for their actions (that tactic seems to be an epidemic these days), but was filing a claim of discrimination against Ragsdale's office the only way Margie Loyd knew to fight back against being used by Ragsdale to deflect attention away from him?



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