Why is it that the best posts on Naval Gazing, the OC Weekly’s blog, happen on late Friday afternoons?
But R. Scott Moxley’s post from last week may not have had the impact it should have had.Â Listening to the transcription of the Carona/Haidl tapes (that would be the indicted, on-trial-for corruption, disgraced, hypocritical and resigned ex-sheriff Mike Carona) features a brief nugget into how Sheriff Mike regarded his onetime spokesperson.
Carona says: “I just think he (Fleischman)Â was a moron on his best day, but . . .
They’re willing to pay morons a lot of money because I was probably paying him when he left $90,000 a year. He made four times what I was paying him in a year, he made it in six months. And, uh, it’s all through that silly ass Flash Report. He was doing consulting for business and stuff like that, too, you know? He’s doing a George Jaramillo . . . He’s doing a shakedown.”
With Johnny Flash’s ties to the State GOP, one way for Republicans to curry Fleischman’s favor is to buy ads on the Flash Report.Â I’m sure the ad revenue for the site is good and don’t necessarily think that Carona was accurate, but then Sheriff Mike I’m sure forgot that the Bible says “thou shall not commit adultry” when handing over a check to help cover the cost of his alledged mistress’Â Â lawÂ office/love nest.Â But a shakedown from Fleischman? How would thatÂ go down exactly?
We understand Jon Fleischman will be called to testify in the trial.Â It will be interesting to see which Fleishcman shows up; the party boss pissed off at Randy Duke CunninghamÂ or the fawning fan of Sheriff Mike.Â In either case, if Fleischman confirms a lot of details that Haidl uncovered to help burythe Sheriff. its damaging to Jon professionally as someone who willfullyÂ misledÂ the press on Carona’s “management style.”Â And if he truly didn’t know what was going on, then Fleischman is not the well-connected insider he’s portrayed himself to be.Â
To date, Fleischman has not written about the Carona case.Â He does post links to stories about it, but likely won’t comment until after he tesitfies or the case is closed.
Last February, Fleischman went before the OC BOS and said:Â If the people in public office are doing wrong things..if they are taking money and inappropriately benefiting the people who gave them money. Shame on those office holders. They should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
So Jon’s path is clear, right?
For those of you with strong stomachs, here’s what Jon wrote on Carona’s last re-election bid:
I am going to take a few minutes, though, and talk about a race that is near and dear to my heart.Â My apologies to the vast majority of FR readers who hail from outside of “The OC” — but I want to take a few minutes to urge my several thousand Orange County readers to vote to re-elect my boss, Orange County Sheriff Michael Carona.Â If you are reading this column, and live outside of Orange County, but have family, friends or acquaintances here, please contact them and ask them to vote for Sheriff Carona.
I have known Mike Carona for nearly fifteen years.Â He and I first met when he was the Marshal of Orange County (in charge of security for our county courthouses) and I was a special assistant to freshman Congressman Ed Royce.Â Over the years, I have come to know Carona as a man of strong integrity with a commitment to freedom and liberty, and a passion for public policy administration.Â
Because of Mike Carona’s strong belief in Republican principles, I have seen him be a leader within the GOP.Â He has endorsed hundreds of Republican candidates for local, county, state and federal office.Â Whether it has been his support of paycheck protection, or his solid opposition to both open primary measures, Carona has done the right thing.Â This year you need only look at the big battles in Orange County to know that, despite his own election taking place, Carona is still stepping up for the GOP cause.Â He was a solid endorser of Diane Harkey for State Senate, and he is a prominent supporter of John Moorlach for Board of Supervisors.
Of course, for FlashReport readers, it is important to see the Sheriff as a great conservative leader (I’ve never met a Sheriff who is more passionate about second amendment rights than this one!), but the last five and a half years, I have been able to see a great law enforcement leader and manager first hand.Â If you didn’t know it, I work full-time in the media relations office of the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.Â In that capacity, I get an insider perspective of Sheriff Carona.
There have been a number of news articles (primarily in the OC Weekly and in the LA Times) that have been negative about the Sheriff.Â Well, I can tell you as someone who is truly in a position to sort out fact from fiction — most of what they have said simply isn’t true.Â And the volumes of great things that he and our department achieve on a daily basis that the newspapers don’t print is staggering.Â
So what are we expected to believe Gentle Readers?Â What Jon says, or what Carona was recorded saying about Jon?
“I just think he was a moron on his best day.” — Mike Carona.Â That’s a little better than Haidl’s description of Fleischman as a “Goofy Bastard.”Â
But not by much.