Something is very wrong in the Land of Cotton



Dr. Robert Bullard
Environmental Justice Movement Founder

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

We Warned You About BARD's "New Mule" Governor Bentley--Stephen Bradley Named Communications Director

*Updated Thursday pm 11/11
From the PR News Wire November 9, 2010 7:21 pm
Governor-Elect Robert Bentley and Bentley Transition Team Chairman Charles McCrary have announced three key transition staff appointments.

Clay Ryan, an attorney and shareholder in the Birmingham-based law firm Maynard, Cooper & Gale, PC, has been named Transition Coordinator.  S. Eason Balch, Jr., a partner in the Birmingham office of the law firm Balch & Bingham, LLP, will serve as Transition Legal Advisor while Steve Bradley, president of Stephen Bradley & Associates LLC, a public relations and governmental affairs firm with offices in Birmingham and Montgomery, will serve as Communications Director.  The appointments are effective immediately and will expire when Governor-Elect Bentley is sworn in on January 17.

"I am pleased that we have been able to fill these key positions.  I promised the people of Alabama I would move quickly to organize our transition so that we could better understand the many challenges facing our state and identify the very best people to serve in the cabinet," Governor-Elect Bentley said.

"In addition to administrative staff already in place in the transition office, the appointment of these three experienced professionals to assist the transition team demonstrates our commitment to support Governor-Elect Bentley in the important task of organizing his administration," said Transition Chairman Charles McCrary.
(SOURCES: Governor-Elect Robert Bentley and APCO CEO Charles McCrary)
Let's remind everyone of Dr. Bentley's words on WAPI's The Richard Dixon Show from October of 2010:
Dixon--"Dr. Bentley, some people want to know about the contributions you are getting from BARD, and that you're being backed by some of the same big business interests that backed your opponent Byrne, what do you have to say about that?"
Bentley--"Never heard of them."
John Archibald's Birmingham News "New Mules Keep Old Kick Alive" words regarding BARD:
The Big Mules are back and kickin'.
Not that they ever left. Self preservation, after all, is a matter of Big Mule instinct.
In the decades and days leading up to the Civil Rights Movement, Alabama money and politics were controlled by a coalition of coal mining giants, utility companies and the steel barons whose bosses built fortunes in Birmingham and lived comfortably in its shadow. This coalition spoke softly, so that regular folks could not hear, but they wielded a mighty big kick.
Social change? Whack.
Progressive tax structure? Whack.
Quality education for all? Whack, whack, whack.
The groups stacked the decks in favor of their status quo, which kept black people in their place and poor whites there with them. And then, masterfully, they used the only real difference between those groups -- skin color -- to pit them against each other.
That left the Big Mules out of sight, and out of the minds of reformers who might take some of what they had.
The public and political face of the New Mules is BARD, the Orwellian Business Alliance for Responsible Development. BARD has worked smartly and relentlessly to crush opposition to its policies, whether that be SWMA or foes of the Northern Beltline
It was about control then, and of course money.
"Since BARD can't control us, they want to destroy us and find another way."
Another way? That would be the Mule way.
And the Mule way, in Alabama, is the way it has always been.
Bentley's claims of honesty, integrity, PAC reforms, lobbyist reforms, and cleaning up corruption just trotted right on out of the truth barn. This BARD approved transition team will ensure that the "right kind" of Mules are in key positions during Bentley's reign. We warned you what Bentley really was folks, so don't stand there with your jaw on the hay bale and pretend you're shocked.

Welcome to BARDabama y'all.

Official Alabama limo
*Update--Bentley's added two more interesting names to the team that now stands at 25:
Vicky Drummond--probably a relation to Drummond Coal family and an influential republican operative in Walker County. 2002 political contributions list her occupation as "housewife."
(Drummond is a grand Mule BARD member)
Michael D. Thompson-- President Thompson Tractor (BARD member)
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  1. Further proof that Bentley is a wolf in sheep's clothing to align himself and have his message crafted and furthered by a particular individual who's buddies have had charges of fraud and RICO violations hurled at them.
    New day in Alabama my behind, it's the same old day or Mule Way as Arch so eloquently called it.

  2. Why is is that Archibald is the only member of media to take on BARD? What's everybody else so afraid of?
    Or is it maybe that they are covering for them?

  3. "Never heard of them." R-o-i-g-h-t. And Stephen Bradley, the spokesman for BARD, never sent campaign contributions from his several PACs to Bentley with Ala Power, Drummond, or other BARD member dollars in the kitty, either, huh?

    Bentley endorses the Hwy 280 toll road idea one day and presto! Campaign contributions come in from cement companies the next day. BARD dollars flow to Byrne before the runoff election. After July 13, those BARD dollars pour into Bentley's campaign coffers. But he'd never heard of BARD as recently as a few weeks ago... Just pure coincidence that BARD's PR guy is now his transition team's Communications Director. R-O-I-G-H-T.

  4. Mr. Bradley, I have some questions for you: What do you know about the millions withheld in royalties to the landowners of Emelle during your tenure, 1992 in particular, at Waste Management?
    Where did all that money go and why did you leave WM after such a brief period from 1990 to 1993?
    Why didn't you tell the EPA that Martin Marietta was submitting falsified shipping manifests to Emelle that showed no radiation in the wastes you yourself said you tested and found that they were positive for radiation contamination?
    Don't you rep Martin Marietta currently? Was that some sort of appreciation for not blowing the whistle on them?
    How much did the Carlyle's Group Synagro pay you to represent them in their push to enter N. Alabama which resulted bio contamination?
    How about Monsanto? What exactly did you do for the most evil company on earth?
    I also note that you were the PR man for Shell during the Nigerian spill. Was that your only capacity with Shell during that time?
    Inquiring minds want to know.

  5. ANON--

    Excellent questions!


  6. BARDabama...love that! ROFLMAO

  7. Bentley could not have assembled a more fiendish cast of characters if he tried. He may claim their positions will expire in January but I highly doubt that will be the case.

    Balch was no friend to Alabama during the Exxon Mobil case, so what makes that firm so qualified to act in the best interest of Alabama that Bentley maintains is his first priority?

    Is the man just a complete dolt or is it something more sinister?

    He didn't waste any time shedding that "good Doctor" persona that's for certain with this cast of characters around him.

  8. No Quarry in VincentNovember 10, 2010 at 2:06 PM

    Bentley has already created scandal-and he hasn't even taken office yet!

    I believe Doc Bentley expressed a certain distrust for PACs during 2009. More specifically, he stated he wanted to ban PAC-to-PAC transfers and that he wouldn't accept PAC money unless he knew where the money came from. Then he goes and hires the PAC-Man himself as a part of his transition team!! Sorry, but the general word on the street about Mr. Bradley is not the least bit flattering. He has represented some of the worst polluters and some of the most unscrupulous businesses in the state.

    And, I believe Mr. Balch and Alabama Power were involved in a scandal involving paying for Troy King's expenses associated with a Georgia trip to see a 6 Flags ball game in 2007.

    I had a feeling that when Doc Bentley made his un-enlightened comments about the 280 elevated highway recently, that he had been bought and paid for. His transition team is further proof.

  9. S. Eason Balch lobbyist Alabama Power BARD Lawyers

    Stephen Bradley--lobbyist Alabama Power--BARD Creator

    Charles McCrary--CEO Alabama Power--BARD Mule

    It does not take a blind man to figure this one out. As it has always been, AP is the defacto government of Alabama along with BARD.

    Big Mule way indeed Arch.

    Are all you Bentley voters enjoying the "new day in Alabama politics?"

    You nailed the bastards Max.

  10. Fix is in, but that's not news really, it's always been there. This Bradley fellow sounds like a bad character of the first order. Very interesting this is.

  11. It makes sense to me now why Byrne was defeated and who was really behind that. Bentley is dumb as a box of rocks, no people savvy whatsoever and he seems to be led around by the nose of special interests.
    I wouldn't describe Byrne that way and he did show he has pair by taking on the AEA.
    From what I read, the mules don't like anyone who has a backbone and a mind of their own.
    Dsatardly this plot is and the news has been equally as sharp as the box of rocks Bentley and either not caught on or ignored this story completely.
    Byrne supporters should be outraged!

  12. GB--

    Byrne was heavily supporter by BARD too. We're not sure what happened with him, but are of the mind that the AEA was acting either at the behest of or in conjunction with someone else.

    We do not believe that as coincidental that he fell.

    What we would really like to know is the inside story of what (and who) prompted Bentley to run in the first place.

    We'll agree with the thought that Byrne is sharper than a previously unknown Tuscaloosa dermatologist who lacks any level of executive experience.

    There's a lot of unanswered questions about this whole process don't you think?

    Some of those questions are revealing themselves with the three key players of Bentley's transition team though. More on that soon.


  13. Robert Bentley Has Secret Dothan Meetings and Reports Are He Left With $ 100,000.00 In Campaign Money

    Rickey Stokes
    July 21, 2010

    DOTHAN: The republican nominee for Alabama Governor was in Dothan and Ozark for rounds of closed door secret meetings.

    Governor Nominee Dr. Robert Bentley was meeting with groups who did not give him the time of day in the primary and most of which were bitter opposed to him in the runoff. When we saw Bentley on Friday leaving Dothan Country Club we laughed at/with him on the number of people kissing up to him since winning the republican nomination.

    And kissing up to him they are.

    In a meeting at Dothan Country Club, sources have said Bentley left with $ 100,000.00 plus in campaign donations. Some of those meeting with Bentley in the secret Country Club meeting, John Watson, John Downs, Mack Dove, George Flowers, Paul Lee, Ron Watson, Jim Kelly, Wallace Malone and Jeb Downs. According to sources Country Crossings and electronic bingo were topics of conversations.

    In the meeting with the group, Gary Palmer of the Alabama Policy Institute was there. Palmer is bitter opposed to electronic bingo and is a think tank that researches various issues.

    One source says a very anti bingo member of the group voiced to Bentley he did not want the people to vote on the issue. Reports are Bentley said 90% of the people wanted to vote on the issue and he supports a straight up or down vote.

    At the time I saw Bentley in the parking lot of Dothan Country Club I was not aware of the six figure in campaign donations he had just received. I have called his campaign asking for a response. So far all the response is Bentley is in favor of a vote.

    Earlier on Friday Bentley met with the group I describe as the underground government. A group led by Former Ozark Mayor Bob Bunting and Dothan Businessman Danny Sharp met the last Friday of each month at Ann’s Restaurant in Ozark. You can attend the meeting by invitation only and consists of only a “select” group of powerbrokers. They summoned Bentley to their meeting to answer their questions.

    Some who supported Bentley when he stood no chance have said in private since learning of this meeting they will not support Bentley with this type of private meetings and large donations from powerbrokers. They said…they did not get him here and now look, he appears for sale.

    Before the primary and runoff the Dothan Five did not give Bentley the time of day. One person attending the meeting gave Byrne’s $ 1000 in campaign donations but now sends emails about how great he is.

    November will be an exciting time for Houston County and the State of Alabama.

  14. Note in previous comment the mention of Wallace Malone, former CEO of SouthTrust Bank, at the Dothan Country Club event. Malone is one of those After-the-Runoff contributors to Bentley (one $12,500 contribution in the post-runoff reporting period and another big chunk that same reporting period).

    Granted, Wikipedia isn't always the most air-tight or up-to-date source, but you can usually cross-reference what's in their postings to either verify or refute from other sources [assuming that other media have covered what Wikipedia has covered]. That said, see what Wikipedia says about Malone and his bank's [SouthTrust] merger.---

    "About a year before the merger was announced, Wallace Malone, the company's CEO, quietly moved SouthTrust's commercial banking division headquarters from Birmingham to Atlanta. When the public found out, Malone quickly assured the city and employees that SouthTrust's corporate headquarters would remain in Birmingham. Soon after, when Malone was asked in a local newspaper whether he would ever consider selling the bank in the future, he responded by saying he believed SouthTrust was better on its own than combined with any other bank. Even within the company, he strongly preached to employees that the bank would stay independent. [2] This caused residents of Birmingham to be blindsided when the news that SouthTrust had reached a deal to sell itself to Wachovia was announced. The biggest loss to Birmingham came from SouthTrust moving its commercial banking division to Atlanta a year before the merger was announced, and that Atlanta, not Birmingham, would end up with Wachovia's Southern Banking Group headquarters. [3] Around 1,700 of the 4,000 local SouthTrust jobs were lost in Birmingham due to the merger. Many former SouthTrust Customers have defected to banks like Regions and BBVA Compass.

  15. Is a "grand mule BARD member" anything like a "grand wizard"?

  16. Fat cats, special interests, coal culprits and the usual suspects, and oh yeah, a Jasper housewife too.
    Loving this new day in Alabama politics and ethical, clean government that's being set up don't you?


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