Uncle Tom’s Woodshed?

Ever since I found out about Carlos “Busty” Bustmante’s sexist comment regarding the appointment of Sandra Hutchns as Orange County Sheriff I’ve been waiting for “Busty” to be taken to the woodshed for his conduct. I have been calling for the County of Orange Executive Office to do something other than slap “Busty” with an atta-boy and high-five. That responsibility falls ultimately to the CEO Tom Mauk.

OC CEO Tom MaukJust to clarify the CEO refuses to acknowledge whether “Busty’s” comment, printed in the LATimes, violates County policy. CEO Mauk also stubbornly refused to comment as to whether “Busty’s” comment is reflective of the CEO or the board regarding the appointment of Sheriff Hutchens.

On June 10, 2008 in the lobby of the Hall of Admnistration “Busty” stated to two members of the media: “I kept telling the Chief (Walters) maybe we should get you some implants, or a water bra.”  At a salary of more than $133,000 a year, managing administration for a large county department, you would think Busty would know better.

For the record, the failure to take action to correct such an obvious and public violation of policy by a senior manager who oversees managers making personnel decisions demonstrates a lack of commitment on the part of the county to adhere to their own policy.

“They have built a small little woodshed to create the illusion of consequences for policy violations, where none exist. The woodshed in this case is nothing more than a hide-out where violators of the policy get congratulated upon their creativity. I’m beginning to see that the woodshed is really an outhouse, where Uncle Tom and his sexist band of managers take a dump on the integrity of the County EEO policy.” - Chris Prevatt

Here are the relevent sections of the County’s Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Policy:

A. Agencies, Departments, and their managers, supervisors and employees are responsible for full support and commitment to a policy of non-discrimination and equal employment opportunity.

C. Equal employment opportunity will be achieved through leadership and aggressive implementation of a program of equal employment opportunity. The program will include the periodic and systematic review of recruitment, selection and promotional practices, attention to upward mobility, periodic training and educational opportunities and audits of progress through a review of statistics, and annual Certificates of Compliance and/or Equal Employment Opportunity Plans.

F. Unlawful discrimination based on a person’s protected status or classification will not be tolerated. Discrimination includes any employment related policy, practice, procedure or decision based upon a person’s status, such as sex, race, color, national origin, ancestry, ethnicity, religion, pregnancy, age, sexual-orientation, sexual identity, physical or mental disability, medical condition, marital status, veteran status, citizenship status, or other protected group status rather than merit.

Agencies and Departments are expected to investigate and remedy promptly any seemingly minor acts of harassment to avoid the development of a hostile work environment.

Carlos BustamanteExamples of sexual harassment include, but are not limited to the following, when such acts or behavior come within the above:

Off-duty conduct which falls within any of the above and affects the work environment;

PROCESSING COMPLAINTS

A. …When the County of Orange receives a complaint of discrimination, harassment or retaliation or otherwise has reason to believe that discrimination, harassment or retaliation is occurring, it will take all necessary steps to ensure that the matter is promptly investigated and that prompt, appropriate remedial action is taken. The County of Orange is committed to take action if it learns of discrimination, harassment or retaliation in violation of this Policy whether or not the aggrieved employee files a complaint.

So, CEO Tom Mauk refuses to even admit that the comment was inappropriate and insists that Mr. Bustamante was on his own time when he made it. Fortunately, Uncle Tom Mauk cannot avoid the reality that failure to acknowledge that “Busty’s” comments were inappropriate and that they were not or have not been tolerated is in reality another violation of the policy.

For the record, the failure to take action to correct such an obvious and public violation of policy by a senior manager who oversees managers making personnel decisions demonstrates a lack of commitment on the part of the county to adhere to their own policy. They have built a small little woodshed to create the illusion of consequences for policy violations, where none exist.

The woodshed in this case is nothing more than a hide-out where violators of the policy get congratulated upon their creativity. I’m beginning to see that the woodshed is really an outhouse, where Uncle Tom and his sexist band of managers take a dump on the integrity of the County EEO policy. Tommy, you’re doing a heck of a job!

  37 comments for “Uncle Tom’s Woodshed?

  1. junior
    July 2, 2008 at 9:48 am

    From the policy:

    “Occasional, isolated, sporadic, or trivial acts that are simply annoying in nature may not constitute harassment. Nonetheless, Agencies and Departments are expected to investigate and remedy promptly any seemingly minor acts of harassment to avoid the development of a hostile work environment.”

    Chris – This would seem to be the operative clause from the County’s policy. Are you aware if the County has not handled this situation at this level?

    Has a complaint of harassment been filed?

  2. July 2, 2008 at 9:50 am

    Isn’t this story dead yet? Geez!

    SMS

  3. Dan Chmielewski
    July 2, 2008 at 9:55 am

    But “junior” it doesn’;t appear any meaningful investigation was done on the part of the county.

  4. junior
    July 2, 2008 at 10:25 am

    Dan – Do you expect to be provided information on this investigation? It is a personnel matter at this point.

    I do not see an appropriate mechanism for release to the public of the personnel information you are asking for.

    Again, has a complaint of harassment been filed?

  5. Dan Chmielewski
    July 2, 2008 at 10:33 am

    I expect Busty to apologize for lying about having made the comment in the first place as reported in the LA Times and by Matt Cunningham. Of does the lie have to happen under oath for it to matter to conservatives?

  6. junior
    July 2, 2008 at 10:58 am

    I agree with you that a mis-statement of the truth seems to have occurred. That will not do Mr. Bustamante any good.

    Should Bill Clinton have made a similar apology?

  7. Dan Chmielewski
    July 2, 2008 at 11:16 am

    he did. you must not have been paying attention to it

  8. Oh Good God!
    July 2, 2008 at 12:14 pm

    Why are you still talking about this? You should be much more worried that Ron Cedillos bought Pat Bates’ and Janet Nguyen’s vote that day they appointed Sandra Hutchens! With Pat’s $500,000K+ in campaign debt and Janet being tapped out on any of her big-business supporters, Cedillos (whose company builds jails, in case you all were wondering what he has to gain from this little ‘act of generosity’) must have looked like the ugly person before bar closing–a little disgusting but if you are desperate and squint hard enough, well……

  9. July 2, 2008 at 12:43 pm

    Sara, No the story isn’t dead.

    Junior,

    The issue here is the position of authority “Busty” holds in county administration. His comments fly in the face of existing policy. The fact that the CEO dismisses the matter as something engaged in by “Busty” as a private citizen is a blatant LIE. If we were to accept the CEO’s premise that “Busty” was somehow temporarily off duty, then he still has a responsibility to address this public conduct “outside work” in a manner that assures the 18,000 county employees that this behavior is unacceptable. The fact that Mauk one the one hand denies that “Busty” was on county time, then calls it a personnel matter on the other, presents a conflicting account of the same event. He was either working or not.

    Any moron, including Tom Mauk, knows that “Busty” was on county time. Rather than publicly assure county workers, and the public, that such comments are not accetable, Mauk refuses to even acknowledge the conduct, repudiate it, and while not spelling out what discipline occurred, communicate that corrective action was taken.

    At a minimum, Mauk should require “Busty” to appologize publicly for his crude and inappropriate remark. to appologize publicly for his crude and inappropriate remark.Of course that won’t happen because Uncle Tom is sitting in the Outhouse with “Busty” taking a dump ont the County EEO policy and congratulating “Busty” on the humor and accuracy of his “joke.”

  10. July 2, 2008 at 12:50 pm

    Oh Good God-
    Have you proff of this, or just talking out your a**

    Speaking of bought votes, are you as outraged at Supervisor Norby, whose vote for Walters was sold to Holder and Lewis?

    Santa Ana Councilmember Carlos Bustamante is a sexist pig who has an alleged reputation for treating women like dirt. And his less than ethical behavior when confronted with his sexist pig comment was to lie, a direct violation of Santa Ana’s new Code of Ethics, which Carlos apparently has none of…..

    Come November, lets see how many people are willing to plant yard signs for this less than ethical member of Santa Ana’s Council. I can see the blog post of all the Floral Park folks who support his behavior by supporting Carlos on the not to distant horizon.

  11. junior
    July 2, 2008 at 12:55 pm

    Dan – Is this the Clinton “apology” you are refering to?

    CLINTON “APOLOGY” TEXT DECONSTRUCTION

    Total words: 549
    Total words devoted to self-justification: 134
    Total words devoted to taking responsibility: 92
    Total words devoted to regret for actions: 4
    Total words devoted to attack on prosecutor: 180
    Total words devoted to “time to move on” theme: 137
    Total words devoted to apology: NONE – ZERO – ZILCH – NADA

    “If a President of the United States ever lied to the American people he should resign.” — William J. Clinton, 1974, during the Whitewater scandal.

  12. Dan Chmielewski
    July 2, 2008 at 12:56 pm

    ***Speaking of bought votes, are you as outraged at Supervisor Norby, whose vote for Walters was sold to Holder and Lewis?****

    Since you’re asking Chris for proof Tom, do you have any proof on this charge? Or are you just asking out of …you know….

  13. Dan Chmielewski
    July 2, 2008 at 12:59 pm

    Junior –
    See below. Take your pick. Please note the dates and the number of “I’m sorry’s” But I’m sure this still isn’t good enough for you

    “I did have a relationship with Miss Lewinsky that was not appropriate. In fact, it was wrong. I misled people, including even my wife. I deeply regret that.”
    August 17, 1998

    “I’m having to become quite an expert in this business of asking for forgiveness.”
    August 28, 1998

    “You know, I have acknowledged that I made a mistake, said that I regretted it, asked to be forgiven, spent a lot of very valuable time with my family in the last couple of weeks, and said I was going back to work.”
    September 2, 1998

    “I made a big mistake. It is indefensible, and I am sorry. I can’t disagree with anyone else who wants to be critical of what I have already acknowledged is indefensible. There’s nothing that he [Sen. Joseph Lieberman (D-Conn.)] or anyone else could say in a personally critical way that I don’t imagine I would disagree with since I have already said it myself, to myself, and I’m very sorry about it, but there’s nothing else I can say.”
    September 4, 1998

    “I also let you down, and I let my family down, and I let this country down. But I’m trying to make it right. And I’m determined never to let anything like that happen again. And I’m determined to redeem the trust. So I ask you for your understanding, for your forgiveness on this journey we’re on. I hope this will be a time of reconciliation and healing.”
    September 9, 1998
    (Two Clinton apology quotes were extended today, this one in the afternoon)

    “I’ve tried to do a good job taking care of this country, even when I haven’t taken such good care of myself and my family and my obligations. I hope that you and others I have injured will forgive me for the mistakes I’ve made, but the most important thing is you must not let it deter you from meeting your responsibilities as citizens.”
    September 9, 1998
    (This is evening edition of Clinton apology quotes.)

    “I agree with those who have said that in my first statement after I testified I was not contrite enough. I don’t think there is a fancy way to say that I have sinned. It is important to me that everybody who has been hurt know that the sorrow I feel is genuine: first and most important, my family; also my friends, my staff, my Cabinet, Monica Lewinsky and her family; and the American people. I have asked all for their forgiveness. But I believe that to be forgiven, more than sorrow is required—at least two more things. First, genuine repentance—a determination to change and to repair breaches of my own making. Second, what my Bible calls a “broken spirit”; an understanding that I must have God’s help to be the person that I want to be; a willingness to give the very forgiveness I seek; a renunciation of the pride and the anger which cloud judgment, lead people to excuse and compare and to blame and complain.”
    September 11, 1998

    “What I want the American people to know, what I want the Congress to know, is that I am profoundly sorry for all I have done wrong in words and deeds. I never should have misled the country, the Congress, my friends and my family.”
    December 11, 1998

    “Now that the Senate has fulfilled its constitutional responsibility, bringing this process to a conclusion, I want to say again to the American people how profoundly sorry I am for what I said and did to trigger these events and the great burden they have imposed on the Congress and on the American people.”
    February 12, 1999

  14. Oh Good God!
    July 2, 2008 at 1:33 pm

    Re: Thomas Anthony Gordon postulating out his anal orifice–

    Dan, you beat me to it…was going to ask that exact same thing…
    Walters never went dirty on this appointment, unlike some of his opponents and a couple of supes. Ask anyone closely involved–even those in the final 9. They will be hard-pressed to come up with anything bad about Walters that is credible.

  15. junior
    July 2, 2008 at 2:03 pm

    Dan,

    Would an apology by Carlos Bustamante do it for you?

    How about – I apologize for the disrespectful remarks I made toward Sheriff Hutchens in a private conversation. I am sorry that I was not truthful in my statements concerning those remarks.

    Further, I am sorry that those remarks were overheard and reported by a biased LA Times news reporter who would not have made those same remarks public if they were made by a liberal democrat.

  16. Dan Chmielewski
    July 2, 2008 at 2:26 pm

    First paragraph works. The LA Times reporter is NOT biased in this case. But a nice dodge on that whole notion of liberal media bias.

  17. July 2, 2008 at 3:28 pm

    Junior is an idiot. Here at the county’s most liberal rag, we’ve taken mucho delight over the years catching liberal politicians saying stupid things–Nativo Lopez tying his political plight to the Virgin of Guadalupe, Joe Baca calling Loretta a “whore”, Papi Pulido’s various gentrification schemes. The only reason he’d even bring up bias is because he’s carrying water for Busty. Spill it, Junior!

  18. July 2, 2008 at 3:33 pm

    Hey junior, Because the remark was salacious, in poor taste, and lame, uttered by a public official, in a county building, at a public meeting where the public’s business was being conducted, the LA Times had seven reasons to report it regardless of who it was that had the poor judgment to utter it.

  19. junior
    July 2, 2008 at 4:04 pm

    Gustavo – You are the idioto. I did not call into question any possible liberal bias by this “liberal rag.”

    I merely pointed out the known liberal bias of the LA Times.

  20. junior
    July 2, 2008 at 4:11 pm

    Bill,

    “Poor taste, lame” – certainly.

    Hardly “salacious”, don’t overstate your case.

    It was a private conversation during public meeting – period.

  21. July 2, 2008 at 4:55 pm

    And I’m telling you, junior, that at an even-more avowedly leftist paper like the Weekly, we go after liberals. Same with the Times. Liberal bias or not, they’ve gone after Villaraigosa, the kooky councilmembers in the small Southeast LA Couny cities (e.g., Bell, Cudahy, Southgate), and all of those people were virtual Aztlanistas. So for you to say the Times reporter outed Busty because he’s a Republican is not only an evasion tactic to help Busty, but also plain wrong.

    And it’s “idiota”, not “idioto”–unless you’re trying to write in Esperanto.

  22. Homewrecker
    July 2, 2008 at 4:55 pm

    Chris, you probably won’t get anywhere with Mauk. You need to go to the Board with this. A little embarrassment can go a long way. Don’t let it go stale. Call the deputies and then bring it up at Tuesday’s meeting.

    It is really amazing that they are doing nothing, but then not so amazing.
    OC government is about as corrupt as they come because Republicans hate poor people and worship the rich.

  23. Dan Chmielewski
    July 2, 2008 at 5:05 pm

    The known Liberal Bias of the LA Times? I’m sure Bill and Hillary might disagree with you. And so would Gray Davis. And Antonio Villarigosa, and John Kerry and a host of other liberals the Times has reported about, fairly I might add.

  24. July 2, 2008 at 5:35 pm

    I would chime in about the so-called leftward tilt of the single-payer-trashing Times, but I don’t think it’ll come off right with these pinche permanent italics on.

    Junior, don’t be such a predictable partisan. You don’t need to stick up for every scumbag who happens to be a Republican. It’ll make your head feel better when you stop banging it against the wall of partisanship. (You know what I’m talking about)

  25. July 2, 2008 at 5:44 pm

    Dan -

    Thanks for the Clinton quotes. Apparently, he’s still everyone’s favorite straw man.

    I hate to agree with you, but when you’re right, you’re right.

    SMS

  26. Dan Chmielewski
    July 2, 2008 at 6:30 pm

    I’m sure you’ll get over it

  27. junior
    July 3, 2008 at 7:12 am

    OK – let me get this right.
    Bill Clinton is an apologetic serial liar.
    The LA Times does not have a liberal bias.
    The County should not follow it’s stated personnel policies.
    The County must release private personnel information.
    Bustamante is not entitled to the privacy of his personnel file.
    What else did I have wrong, that I may get my head right (or left)?

  28. Dan Chmielewski
    July 3, 2008 at 9:33 am

    Junior
    1. No. But George W. Bush is an UNapologetic serial liar, Cheney too.
    2. No, the LA Times does not have a liberal bias. Try OC Weekly or LA Weekly. Do you think the Register has a conservative bias?
    3. If the county did follow its stated personnel policies, they Busty would have cleaned out his office last week.
    4. There is no privacy if you work for the county; employment records are public records (Chris, correct me if I am wrong here)
    5. That is correct.
    What else do you have wrong? Where do you want to start?

  29. junior
    July 3, 2008 at 11:11 am

    Dan,

    The OC Register news pages do not have a conservative bias. The editorial pages proudly and overtly express libertatarian views. Some of which are similar to conservative views and some are similar to liberal views.

    On 3, 4 & 5 you are incorrect. and on 1, 2 you are just wrong.

  30. Dan Chmielewski
    July 3, 2008 at 11:36 am

    You don’t read Frank Mickadeit or Gordon Dillow; columnists on the news pages with a conservative point of view. Headlines in the Register often read “Republicans Lose” rather than a “Democrats Win”. The Reguster’s editorial pages carry columnis by Mark Steyn, George Will and Robert Novak (and others) — all conservative. The LA Times editorial pages carry Max Boot and Jonah Goldberg, both conservatives; I’d classify the LA Times editorial pages as MOR/moderate, hardly Liberal.

    We disagree on all 5 points. But on #4, the Register recently requested and received payroll records for all county employees. Am I realy wrong?

  31. junior
    July 3, 2008 at 1:36 pm

    Dan,

    Re. #5 – Employment / salary / wage records are public information. Public employee personnel files are not public information other than through a court order.

    PS: Yevette Cabrerra is very liberal & the news pages of the OC Reg use AP – Reuters, UPI, etc. all with liberal bias

  32. junior
    July 3, 2008 at 1:39 pm

    Dan – If you do not believe me on #5, go ahead and file a Public Information Request with the County. Try Chris Prevatt’s file, I am sure that he wouldn’t mind you getting hold of his personnel file.

  33. Dan Chmielewski
    July 3, 2008 at 2:08 pm

    Yevette Cabrerra is very liberal & the news pages of the OC Reg use AP – Reuters, UPI, etc. all with liberal bias

    The wires are among the more conservative of MSMs; any studies to back this up.

    Court orders can get you access, so you prove my point

  34. junior
    July 3, 2008 at 2:39 pm

    Information obtained by court order does not meet the definition of “Public Information.”

    So file a court order, that is your perogitive.

    Otherwise, I suggest that you and Chris refrain from further requests that the County voluntarily release information which is exempted from general Public Information.

  35. Gustavo Arellano
    July 3, 2008 at 3:00 pm

    Dan, don’t bother with junior. You and I already demonstrated that those evil liberal newspapers have gone after liberals with the same gusto we go after conservatives, yet he’s insistent the Times threw in Busty’s idiotic comment because they’re liberal. Go figure.

  36. Dan Chmielewski
    July 3, 2008 at 4:47 pm

    I’m still waiting for Junior to acknowledge that Bill Clinton did in fact apologize for Lewinsky.

  37. Northcountystorm
    July 4, 2008 at 12:29 am

    Whether the discipline(if any) that Bustamante received should be public is debatable since public employees–especially managerial ones that in addition are elected officials–have their privacy rights weighed against the public’s right to know.

    But what should not be debatable are the following:

    1) Carlos should man up, apologize for lying and apologize for saying what he did. Apologize to the Sheriff, to female County employees and to his Santa Ana Councilmembers since the County has said he was speaking in his capacity as a Santa Ana Councilmember.

    2) The County should make a clear statement that comments such as were made by Bustamante are not acceptable comments by any County employee while on County property. they can nuance the time and whether he was in the course and scope but unless the County makes it clear they do not find this language acceptable they could be sen as ratifying the otherwise isolated instance conduct of Bustamante. Which could biute them in the butt in future litigation. The COunty could probably get away with not revealing any discipline they dished out to Bustamante but do need to make it clear that the conduct was unacceptable.

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