It is undeniable that a lot of changes have taken place since George suddenly exited. Ironically, if Sakauye had come in and VOLUNTARILY done what she has been and is being forced to do –kicking and screaming and foot-stomping all the way–
She would have been viewed as a branch asset, not as the branch’s biggest remaining Team George liability. A liability the entire branch is paying for.
Our chief justice — a professional gambler-turned top representative of the judicial branch– is undertaking budget discussions with less-than-zero credibility. And query– is it responsible for the legislature to entrust billions to current top leadership, knowing where its true priorities lie (and it sure as heck ain’t with the public and trial courts)?
“Guest” is right. Current leadership does not play well or responsibly with others and the natural result is for current leadership — and unfortunately the entire branch– to get schooled. Those in the trenches will pay the biggest price.
If the branch wants credibility and positive change, the branch as a whole (not just the ACJ, and court employees) is going to have to man up, and woman up, and demand a change in leadership. Certainly that means democratization of the Judicial Council and it may even mean respectfully asking the CJ to step down. She is clearly in over her head. The structural leadership/oversight changes necessary to ensure that in the future, branch leadership handles itself and branch money in a representative, prudent, responsible manner MUST be given priority — by the branch and by the legislature.
Help keep us in power, and what’s your pleasure? A big fat pension? A little side cash? How about a new kitchen? A luxurious new courthouse? A position on the JC? A bench or appellate position? Can we look the other way for you, or help you get rid of a pesky situation– maybe you have someone you want us to take down for you– oh and we’ll get just the right assigned judge for you, or give you the green light to destroy documents– how about a private lawyer to defend your bad behavior, courtesy of the AOC. . . .you name it, we got it, because we rule this multi-billion dollar empire and we got no oversight!
Sadly, top leadership has undoubtedly inspired great. . . .thuggery, thievery, cronyism, corruption, derision, disgust, and so much more.
Respect and public trust are not on the list. . .
I wonder if our gambling barmaid regrets her 20-minute rant against key members of the legislature. . . .or taking the Roddy/Turner advice to teach the legislature a lesson by continuing to spend on CCMS and court construction. . . .or just recently insisting top leadership has been a “wise steward” of branch money when a mountain of outside evidence proves the contrary. . . .
I wonder if Sakauye understands how disingenuous it looks for her to beg for money while insisting to the bitter end that CCMS was a good investment and “worked”. And while Sakauye and company are blatantly helping bad actors delay their retirement to maximize their pension benefits at the expense of the public. And while a bunch of unnecessarily expensive and grandiose new courthouse projects are in the pipeline, and the best the cj/jc/aoc could offer was a 10% cut.(Tell me again why state architects and DGS were not used for these projects in the first place? And why people from all over the state and nation have been brought in to work on the projects rather than using local talent?)
Whether Sakauye survives– or not– I do hope everyone realizes that a legislative fix is absolutely necessary. OF COURSE the Judicial Council must be democratized. It is untenable for a cj–good, bad or middle-of-the-road– to be able to handpick JC and AOC party-liners whose actions the entire branch must LITERALLY pay for. There must be effective checks and balances within the branch, so a cj that turns out to be an arrogant megalomaniac or arrogant inexperienced footstomper cannot surround himself or herself with well-paid thugs and sycophants at the expense of the branch. If the entire branch has to pay the price for branch leadership’s actions, the branch sure as heck better have a say regarding who is in branch leadership positions.